Frequently asked questions

The answers
to all your questions

Frequently asked questions

We’ve gathered the most frequently asked questions for all departments so you can easily find answers to your questions. If your question is not in our FAQ, just reach out and our experienced employees will help you.

General

Why choose MapsIndoors as your indoor wayfinding solution?

MapsIndoors is designed to make navigation inside large indoor spaces easier and stress-free and to unlock new ways for you to increase your revenue. The indoor wayfinding platform can be used at any large venue such as airports, shopping centres, convention centers, universities, hospitals, corporate offices and sports arenas. MapsIndoors has a range of benefits: The solution is built on Google Maps, which ensures a seamless transition from outside to inside your venue plus a high level of familiarity, as everyone is used to the map design and functionality. Furthermore, you can easily update location based data such as points of interest on the map via the MapsIndoors Content Management System (CMS). MapsIndoors can be integrated with an indoor positioning system, which will unlock even more potential.

 

How does indoor wayfinding work?

Indoor wayfinding brings all the known benefits of outdoor navigation indoors. It provides users with a digital navigation tool, which helps them find their way around large indoor spaces using only their smartphones. Traditionally, people would use maps or information desks when they needed directions inside a building but with our indoor wayfinding solution, indoor wayfinding has become digital.

 

What is indoor positioning?

GPS doesn’t work inside buildings. When we want routing from A to B inside, we need to apply a different positioning technology. There are a range of options available such as Bluetooth beacons, WiFi Positioning, positioning via magnetic fields and via lighting. MapsIndoors can be interfaced to any of the above and the most suitable indoor positioning technology depends on the venue type and on the solution requirements.

 

Why should we use indoor positioning?

When you combine your indoor wayfinding solution with an indoor positioning technology, you unlock a whole range of added benefits such as “Find nearest” and real time routing from A to B. You will also be able to gain insight into how people move around your venue and send customers and visitors push notifications based on their current location.

 

Which indoor positioning system should we use?

This depends entirely on the venue type, solution requirements and your budget. We can always advise you on which indoor positioning system, we think is best suited for your needs.

 

How do you move from outdoor to indoor navigation?

Because MapsIndoors is built on Google Maps, the transition from outdoor to indoor navigation is completely seamless. This means that the user can get a route from their home and all the way to a specific point of interest inside the building.

 

How do we make changes to information shown on the indoor maps?

We know that very few indoor spaces are static, so we have developed an Indoor Navigation Content Management System, which allows you to add, edit and delete points of interest and add images and text to all indoor locations. For convention centers, the MapsIndoors CMS is often used to make changes to floorplans as layouts change based on specific events. The MapsIndoors CMS is easy to use and does not require any programming skills.

 

Can we get indoor wayfinding if we don’t have an app?

MapsIndoors is delivered as SDKs and APIs so you can easily integrate it into existing apps, websites and/or info kiosks. If you don’t have an app, we can help you with that as well.

We already have an app. Can MapsIndoors be integrated into an existing app?

Through the MapsIndoors SDKs and APIs, you can integrate the indoor wayfinding solution into your existing app. You can read more about the technical specifications under “Developers“.

 

I want to resell MapsIndoors. Do you work with Partners?

Yes, we work with partners across the globe to market and sell our indoor wayfinding solution, MapsIndoors. You can read more about the MapsPeople Partner Program here. If you think the product fits well in your portfolio, please don’t hesitate to contact us to find out more.

Features

Is live positioning included?

MapsIndoors relies on a third-party positioning provider for live positioning. You can implement your own positioning provider with a third party SDK or we can help you.

 

What is the difference between using my phone’s GPS and an indoor positioning technology?

GPS is a standardized service available on most mobile devices that is suitable for device positioning outdoors. An indoor positioning technology is typically a combination of technologies, including GPS, WiFi, BLE, and sensor-technology in order to determine an indoor position of an end user’s device.

 

Can the system figure out what floor I am on?

Used in conjunction with an indoor positioning service, MapsIndoors can pinpoint your exact location within the building.

 

Does the system support 3D, AR, or a 360-degree view?

MapsIndoors now supports Google Street View indoors for our web solution. Interactive panoramas, like the ones we know from Google Maps Street View, are composed by a sequence of 360 degree images. To create these images, you can either use the official Google Maps Street View app or get a certified photographer to help you. When the images are uploaded to Google Maps Street View, go to your MapsIndoors CMS and link your points of interest to the right pictures in Street View. While the MapsIndoors SDK is currently not an AR/VR SDK, we do expose a lot of geometries. These geometries, e.g. for a route or a location, are referenced in a global (WGS84) coordinate system, and to work for AR/VR, they must be converted to a local metric coordinate system. If you have the development skills, we can definitely help you!

CMS

Can I change the route/floor plan myself?

You can edit your route network by opening and closing paths and apply waiting times at specific checkpoints. If your route/floor plan changes go beyond these features, please submit a support tickets – we’ll take care of it for you!

 

Can I update the floor plan content?

While it is not possible to edit room walls in the MapsIndoors CMS, you can easily change names and other relevant content of any room. You must submit any other floor plan changes as a support ticket.

 

Can I change the colors?

Yes, but not through the MapsIndoors CMS. Please file a ticket in our customer portal to change the colors within your map.

Development

Is the Blue Dot Experience included as one of the MapsIndoors SDK features?

An Indoor Positioning Service (IPS) is needed for the Blue Dot Experience. MapsIndoors SDK is itself not an IPS. To learn more about indoor position, we recommend this blog post.

MapsIndoors provides indoor maps and directions with seamless indoor/outdoor integration because our maps are our built on Google Maps.

In order to utilize the Blue Dot Experience, users must find an IPS and use that location in MapsIndoors. To some extent, iOS CoreLocation and Android Location Services can fulfil the role of an IPS, depending on the building infrastructure. This should be tested first. You will need some basic knowledge of the LocationManager on Android and the CLLocationManager on iOS.

We have made implementations for the LocationManagers platform in demo apps shipped with the MapsIndoors SDK. See more here.

 

How do I set up a MapsIndoors application?

MapsIndoors Deployment specialists will process your buildling(s) and deploy the platform. For information on implementation, please review the MapsIndoors SDK Guides and Documentation. If you want to know more about the MapsIndoors app and/or the commercial aspects of MapsIndoors, please contact us. If you have other technical questions that are not answered by our existing documentation, please create a support request.

 

How do you integrate MapsIndoors SDK into our own app?

MapsIndoors is built on top of Google Maps. You can initialize a Google Map and apply MapsIndoors content on top of it with just a few lines of code. Complexity grows depending on your feature requirements. Learn more from our guides for iOS, Android, Web, or CMS: https://mapsindoors.github.io/.

 

How do I integrate the MapsIndoors CMS with my Facility Management System so I only have to change the content of my building in one place?

MapsIndoors can be integrated with any other system using the MapsIndoors REST API

 

Can I get the mobile solution as a web solution? Which features are only available on mobile?

You can create an excellent indoor wayfinding experience using the MapsIndoors SDK for web. However, most third-party indoor positioning services are only available on native Android and iOS solutions. The ability to tilt and rotate maps is also only available on iOS and Android.

Deployment

What is the expected timeframe for a MapsIndoors deployment?

Deployment time depends on venue size and data quality. A typical deployment can vary as widely as two days to 4-6 weeks.

 

Can I view my maps on google.maps.com?

The MapsPeople solution is built on top of the Google Maps SDK, and is not a part of the public google.maps.com. Rather, it is owned by you. It is possible to get your building/venue on to the public google.maps.com site with a separate agreement or you can apply to Google independently. MapsPeople can not guarantee if and when the building will appear on google.maps.com and has no say in Google’s independent acceptance process.

 

I uploaded my CAD drawings to Google Indoor Maps, can you help me with this?

Yes, we have experience uploading our MapsIndoors maps to Google Indoor Maps. (JLJ, RSA)

MapsPeople, however, can not guarantee when Google will update the Google Indoor Maps platform with your new data.

 

In what format do you need my data for MapsIndoors deployment?

We support various data formats, but prefer DWG files for building drawings and CSV files for the related meta data about your rooms and other locations.

The attributes for the locations should be delivered in a spreadsheet such as this.

 

We support a variety of different floor plan formats.

CAD formats:

– DWG

– DXF

 

GIS formats:

– MapInfo

– Esri Shape files

– Esri Geodatabase

– Geojson

– KML

– KMZ

 

Graphics formats:

– AI

– PDF

– Images

Security

Does Google have access to our data?

Client data belongs to our clients alone and is not shared or exchanged with third parties such as Google or other business partners.

 

Where is our data stored?

Map graphics are generated and hosted by MapsPeople. To ensure fast and easy delivery to all corners of the world, MapsPeople relies on Amazon’s Content Delivery Network (CDN). MapsIndoors data and services are hosted in and shared between a cloud provider’s regional data centers across the world. To ensure safety, scalability, and high availability, MapsPeople hosts locations and routing network data as well as services and APIs at Google and Azure. All cloud providers are ISO certified. The MapsIndoors database and management services hosted at cloud providers takes advantage of the extra measures of security granted by the service providers. All MapsIndoors services and APIs are designed, programmed, and maintained based on the requirements outlined in PCI-DSS-12.

 

What data are you collecting/monitoring from end users’ activities?

We monitor all requests to our back-end services which can include data such as:

– search words

– search filtering

– unique sessions (anonymous session ID)

– technical info (device/browser info, software versions, etc.)

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