When we heard that Toronto-based Avenza Systems Inc., innovators in the mapping industry, recently took home the ‘IMTA Global Award’ – only given out once every few years for the ‘best of the best’ in the mapping industry – we figured we’d download the company’s new PDF Maps app and talk to Doug Smith, the company’s director of sales and marketing, to see just what the company is all about.The IMTA Global Award from International Map Trade Association recognizes the best products from three international Map Trade Association Regions. The Toronto team also took the ‘Graham Stanton Award of Excellence’ and the ‘Best Maps for Multimedia Application.’
Avenza, more than 15 years old, sells software to cartographers. PDF Maps app, Avenza’s innovative app for the iOS platform, redefines how consumers view and work with mapping technology and how map publishers are reaching their audience as paper maps continue to decline due to technology equipped with GPS. Through PDF Maps, Avenza is working with map publishers to recoup income and build new revenue streams. The app itself is changing how the mapping industry does business in a digital age.
If you download PDF Maps app, you have the opportunity to download, in one place, the maps that interest you via apps from many sources – many free and others at low cost – with many more to be added. Looking for the transit system map of Manhattan, it’s there. Looking for hiking trails in Adirondack Park, it’s there. Planning a tourism trip throughout the Iberian Peninsula, it’s there.The map apps in the PDF Maps app are currently divided into transit, typographical and tourism maps within countries worldwide. A Tools button allows you to measure distances, tag waypoints, add photos, find coordinates and more. You can, or will be able to find places nearby.
“We’re constantly making arrangements for additional maps,” says Smith. “If you know that you will be traveling outside your coverage area, you can download the app and avoid heavy roaming charges. Or you can download an app for use in an area where there is no coverage We’re constantly adding new ones. At the moment we’re trying to get the transit apps of all major cities.
A lot, though not all, of the map apps listed in PDF Maps, are made with Avenza’s software.