Other Osmdroid vs. Google Maps


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Longtime User
Hi all,

I've got little to no experience on the subject, so I'm asking here for some good advice.
I read this post from warwound that makes me prefer Osmdroid, but let me give you an idea of what I need.

My app should be able to show my current position along with a few POIs based on some selection criteria.
These POIs are common to all the users but they're not conventional POIs like restaurants, museums..so I will design and manage a specific DB for that.
I need the ability to tap on a POI to show detailed info about it.

It doesn't matter whether maps are available only working on-line, but obviously an off-line mode could be a plus.
It would be nice to highlight the path between current position and chosen POI.
POIs could be indicated by a single communal icon but using different icons for specif groups of POIs should be better.

In the past I used an intent to launch GoogleMaps when I needed to show a place on a map, but now I need a closer integration within the app that, BTW, I'm still conceiving..

I'll read with great interest your comments, hints and notes about past experiences with those tools.

Thank you.


Well-Known Member
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Longtime User
Hi udg,
I started develop some apps with both osmdroid & google maps-mainly self guided tour apps, so both have advantages and disadvanteges. I'll try to give a short summery of my experiences - without claiming to be complete and may be they are a result of not knowing all possibilties of the libs. so comments and hints are appreciated:)

+ osm is great, free and growing
+ different mapstyles (Renderings) available (CycleMap, Mapnik, OSMPublicTransport) or use your own styles
+ possibility to give local tilesets to the app, so it will run without internet
+ possibilty to give your own tiled maps to the app, like historical maps
+ a lot of possibilities to interact with the api (thanks a lot to Martin), so it easy to integrate it in your app
- the standard tiles (Mapnik) are designed for webapplications, so OSM-labels are on high resolution devices nearly not readable
- geolocation and routing is just starting and there are only some possibilties at the moment (mapquest, which is also limited)

+ the leves of details are very good in my opinion
+ you easy switch between Satellite, street, hybrid and terrain
- interaction between your app and the map is not so easy. for example you can not give the marker a tag (to hold the id), you have to work with secondary structures like a map which hald the marker and the key, which is strange
- google is commercial and the requests are limited, also for routing and geolocation api, you don't know what the future will bring (I am optimistic;))

even though the advantages of the osmdroid seems to be more, at the moment I prefere google for my self guiding tour apps.

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Licensed User
Longtime User
Hi Stefan,

thank you very much for sharing your comments.

Today I installed OSM and in much less than 1 hour I had my first app running!
I easily integrated Martin's example code in my project, modified the POIs file from his demo and started experimenting with more features. All that in minutes from OSM downloading. I am really impressed.
Surely it will get more complicated the more I'll exlore it and soon I'll meet the cons you cited, but, as for tonight, let me be really happy. :)

@warwound : Martin, if you will ever read this: THANK YOU!
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