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This article was published on December 15, 2010

Bing has reworked its map interface for greatly improved readability

Bing has reworked its map interface for greatly improved readability
Alex Wilhelm
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Alex Wilhelm

Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected] Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected]

Hot on the heels of our last post demonstrating the new Bing abilities with regards to food, the search giant has also today released a new version of their normal map product, version 1.1, to help users find what they need on the double.

The changes center around five main ideas of improvement, which are:

  • Increased city density while preserving a clean, visually appealing map
  • Clearer differentiation between major and minor city streets
  • Greater color contrast at the city-level so streets “pop” out more
  • Altered font sizes and contrast for crisper, less cluttered map labels
  • Improved highway shields for US and added new shields for 7 countries

The effect is at once mild and noticeable across Bing Maps, never my favorite when compared to Google’s map offerings, making them faster to use accurately. Take a look at a few examples. The new version is always on the right in the following images:

This is an incremental change, but one that Bing put quite a bit of thought into. If you read the team’s blog post on the matter, the level of care that was employed is impressive.

Will it woo people from Google? I don’t think so, but upgrades and tweaks like this from Bing will surely help keep their users loyal. What do you think of all of today’s Bing updates?

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