Thursday, February 11, 2016

Exploring M&S on Google Maps

One of my trends for this year is mapping.

People take maps for granted, but there is lots of activity around mapping at the moment, and lots of money being spent on mapping technology and companies.

We think of maps as open - and indeed I've made lots to help me with places to visit on holiday and so on.  But actually they're closed ecosystems, and this example with Marks & Spencer in Oxford Street, London illustrates that.

On Google Maps you can now see inside the store to see the different departments.  You can change floors by clicking on the numbers on the right hand side, near 'zoom'.  You can't see this for the other stores nearby, and you can't see this (as far as I know) on Bing or other mapping companies.

It's very much Google's decision what they choose to put in the maps, beyond the basics.  If you're Emirates and you pay to name Arsenal's stadium then you'll be in all the maps.  If you're R Costings and you're the sponsor of Cambridge United's stadium than you're not listed.

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