BlackBerry Maps Revamped

Announcements

Hello developers – I have great news! As part of our continuous effort to improve our map client and the data services behind it, we have added some really exciting features to our BlackBerry® Maps offering. Whether your application uses an embedded MapField or simply invokes BlackBerry Maps to render map data, you can start taking advantage of these new features today!

First, the data coverage has been extended by adding 34 new countries, including Australia, Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, New Zealand, The Philippines and Taiwan. I have no doubt that the addition of these new countries in our database will open up a lot of opportunities for app developers in those regions. The figure above shows the current coverage of the BlackBerry Maps service.

After carefully listening to your comments and feedback, we have also spent a significant amount of our efforts to optimize the visual appearance of the maps with a stronger rendering engine as well as with a new color scheme. New POI databases for hospitals, universities/colleges, police stations, train/subway stations, shopping centers, parking, parks and airports were also added wherever available, in order to make the maps as meaningful as possible to the end user. The screenshots below highlight a few of the many visual changes that went in as part of this update.

Please note that, in order to enable the extended coverage and visual optimization, you will first need to update your device as instructed below:

Updating BlackBerry Maps with BlackBerry® Device Software 4.7 or Lower

  1. From the home screen, go to Maps.
  2. Press the [Menu] key and select Options.
  3. Press the [Menu] key and select Clear Cache.
  4. Select Delete when prompted to delete cached entries.

Updating BlackBerry Maps with BlackBerry Device Software 5.0 before Bundle 1057

Update your BlackBerry Device Software to the latest version, available here. If you do not wish to update your software, you can follow the instructions below (for the BlackBerry Device Software 5.0 after Bundle 1057) to receive the additional map coverage and new map design. However, the new POI icons will not be available.

Updating BlackBerry Maps with BlackBerry Device Software 5.0 after Bundle 1057

1. From the home screen, go to Maps.

2. Press the [Menu] key and select Options.

3. Press the [Menu] key and select Clear Cache.

4. Select Delete when prompted to delete cached entries.

Updating BlackBerry Maps with BlackBerry Device Software 6.0

1. From the home screen, go to Maps.

2. Press the [Menu] key and select Options.

3. Press Global Map Options.

4. Press the [Menu] key and select Clear Cache.

While we try our best to support new features on all OS versions, it is important to note that some of these features are not available on legacy OS versions. Please use the table below to determine which features are available for the OS version you have.

Feature BlackBerry Device Software Version
4.2 4.5 4.6 4.6.1 4.7 5.0
Before Bundle 1057
5.0
After Bundle 1057
6.0
New map coverage Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
New map design No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Parking icons No No No No No No Yes Yes
Hospital icons No No No No No No Yes Yes
University/College icons No No No No No No Yes Yes
Shopping center icons No No No No No No Yes Yes
Police station icons No No No No No No Yes Yes
Metro station icons No No Yes No No No Yes Yes
Train station icons No No No No No No Yes Yes
City park labels No No No No No No Yes Yes
National park labels No No No No No No Yes Yes
Airport icons No No No No No No Yes Yes
Other landmarks No No No No No No Yes Yes

I am very excited about these new features and am really looking forward to any comments you may have!

About Shadid

Application Development Consultant at Research In Motion (RIM), Shadid is a developer and more importantly a developer developer. He has been working closely with the dev community to help bring the best BlackBerry® experience to their applications. A key contributor in the Developer Relations team, Shadid is the lead contact for Location Bases Services, Sensors, Bluetooth and Deep Integration of Apps. Working with BlackBerry developers is not just his job but a passion he shares with the BlackBerry developer community.

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