Sunday, September 21, 2014

A Mobile Map Application for Book and Antique Hunting

I like to use a map application on my iPad when I'm out hunting for books.  Most often, I use the app if I am visiting a series of estate sales.  Occasionally, I might be traveling somewhere and wish to enter the locations of a number of book and antique stores into the app.

The old Google maps worked fine for entering a series of locations in that it stored the locations in its recent history, so they could be recalled by checking the list.  The new Google maps does not work the same way, so I no longer like it. 

Apple maps works in the fashion that the old Google maps did; however, it would be nice to be able to see all of the locations pinned on the map at the same time.  That functionality does not exist with either Apple or Google maps.  I want to be able to see all of my planned stops at the same time on the screen just like if I had sticky notes placed on a paper map like I used to do 20 years ago.

This summer I tried the Click2Map app.  Click2Map is offered in both a free and pay version.  I chose the free version.  In the free version, users can enter and store up to 150 locations, and every single location is displayed on the map at the same time.

Users sign up for an account on the Click2Map website.  The pinned locations are stored on the website, and the app syncs with the website whenever it is opened.

The app does exactly what I wanted, and I have found it very helpful in my book hunting.  The app does use up a lot of data, more so than other maps applications.  It constantly syncs with the server, which is what uses the data.  I did encounter a few glitches, such as the app closing abruptly.  Even though the app has some glitches and uses a lot of data, the benefits far outweigh the problems.  It's the only free app I was able to find after extensive searching that allowed me to display multiple locations on the map at the same time.

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