This morning MapQuest released “My MapQuest” a set of personalization tools that enable users to save specific maps and customize or shortcut other features on the site:
Users sign in using an AIM ID (Open ID is coming) and then can save any search or map. Recent searches are remembered without registration via cookies. Here are several maps I created and saved just a couple of minutes ago:
One of the maps above is “movie theaters” in San Francisco, another is a map of coffee houses in my old neighborhood and another is a commute route from Oakland to downtown San Francisco. In the latter case, I’ve mapped the traffic and when I return to this map the current traffic conditions are shown (which is convenient).
There are several other nice features:
- I can input and store multiple cell numbers (like “ship to” addresses) to send maps to a default cell or to any of the other stored numbers, rather than inputting them each time I was to “send to cell”
- I can input multiple locations and more easily manage directions to and from those places (e.g., “home,” “work,” “school,” etc.)
- I can add my vehicle (or multiple vehicles) to a saved list and calculate trip cost based on standard mileage and current gas prices for the selected vehicle (i.e., “Should we take the Mini or the Escalade?”)
- The system supports multiple languages and readings in kilometers or miles
My MapQuest is also coming to mobile in the near future.
In my quick testing this morning I found that the “My MapQuest” experience is not without its bugs and awkwardness at the margins. However, on balance the new personalization capabilities — most of which are unique to MapQuest at this point — are very useful. It will be interesting to see how many people in fact use them.
Yet My MapQuest is simply the latest installment in an ongoing rollout of new tools and features that aim to improve the MapQuest user experience, as well as keep the market leader one step ahead of rival Google.
Related: Mike Blumenthal discusses Google fixing “lost saved locations” in Maps.