Thursday, November 03, 2005
At first glance you may think this is just another Google Maps, dig deeper because its way more. You get a default location on the map to start from which means you can save your home, work, wife's, or mistress' as your starting point for quick directions, or quick escape route. The drop down menu also stores recent addresses for quick access, which could be a positive or negative depending on if you happen to be hiding something or not.
The integrated local search feature is my favorite. Yahoo really nailed this feature not only with its ease of use but also the functionality. Here you can enter and address and expand the menu to the corresponding industry you are looking for ie Restaurants, gas stations, florists, bookstores etc. There is a whole list of selections and they will only show in your current field of vision. Another cool feature with this is you can get directions from point A to point B and then use the same menu to search for a business that's on your way. Talk about convenient. It's a great way to do things without having to type, great for those who keep their Pimp Juice in one hand and a mouse in the other. These avenues (pun intended) also lead me to believe that there will be new advertising space on Yahoo Maps, whether its pay per click, paid inclusion or straight sponsorship, there will be money made from this product, but its up to Yahoo on how.
Other features include, an automated updated URL (so no more "link to this page" link), a full set of Yahoo Map APIs, mobile phone ready, mapping overlays and more.
Once again Google throws the product out on the market, another company comes along and makes it better and more robust and the end result ends in a win for the consumers.