Say goodbye to Microsoft's 'MapPoint' and 'Streets and Trips'

Microsoft has recently announced that it is retiring two of its mapping products, MapPoint and Streets and Trips. Both of these services have received their last update and will soon be retired in favor of Microsoft's premier mapping product, Bing Maps.

We don't know exactly when Microsoft changed their pages to announce that these services had reached their 'End of Life' and a quick search around the web shows that it is not widely known. 

MapPoint made it easier to view, edit and integrate maps into existing applications, and Streets and Trips was a route planning package that was a subset of MapPoint. Knowing what these products do, it's not a surprise that these services are being retired in favor of Bing Maps.

Both of these applications are examples of how applications are moving to the browser. Both of these mapping services used to live inside their own isolated application, but with the browser quickly an application that can support running high end processes inside of it, these former stand-alone products are quickly disappearing.

Streets and Trips will have online support available until July 14, 2015; both products can still be purchased up to 12/31/2014.

Source & Image Credit: Microsoft 1, 2 | Thanks for the tip Remco!

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Another perfectly good product down the ****ter what are these people smoking? they spend years adding features to these programs and then decide just to kill them off.

Its not the first time this has happened recently infopath who knows what they're going to kill off next and leave users\developers out in the cold

I have a customer that tracks the location of freight trucks for a few US trucking companies. Map Point is critical to what he does as the trucks locations are shown in Map Point. I wonder if Microsoft even looked into how its map programs are used by businesses or if they care at all.

That's really the bigger point. MS has a history of doing this very thing which is why whenever an alternative exists to MS software, I usually give it a hard look. Too often for both consumer and commercial users, they're left in the cold. "Recommend alternatives", gee how nice of them. There just aren't many good alternatives here commercially, this was one of the good MS products, too bad it couldn't pay off enough to justify keeping around. Now many businesses that rely on it will be left scrambling.

Problem is offline use. I went on a trip and could not use Bing or google cause we had no wifi in the car. First stop we came too I found HERE Maps by Nokia and you could sownload the maps for offline use and it worked great.

Middle of Ireland.. No cell data, no way to get any online maps. Middle of Colorado, Washington, Montana, Texas, Nevada, etc no cell service. Locally installed maps and gps software have saved my butt more times than i can count. No, the world communication infrastructure is not in place.

So use a paper map. Those have worked fine for decades. Also, if you are getting lost more times than you can count, a bit more pre-planning may be in order.

I've made some comments about this above. Nokia and Microsoft make HERE maps software available for free. And you can download all the maps for offline use for free. Small countries have one map. Larger countries like Germany, France and the USA are broken down by regions.

The offline maps span all 6 populated continents. They are of fantastic quality, especially in Europe. I've been hiking with them (yea, more than just a road map the maps include lots of info, even 3d renderings of buildings) in Germany and they are great.

COKid said,
So use a paper map. Those have worked fine for decades. Also, if you are getting lost more times than you can count, a bit more pre-planning may be in order.

Paper maps require you to take your eyes off the road, spoken GPS does not. Paper maps usually get updated once a decade, while computer maps get updates every 2 - 4 months. Being in Colorado, you should be used to the construction and constant changes that invalidate paper maps.

On the pre-planning, I own a computer business that does emergency repairs for businesses in various locations that I've never traveled to. Its quite profitable being ready for the events you can't plan on.

I used Microsoft Tips with a USB GPS and a Laptop, and a power cord connecting the laptop to the car, and I drove more than 1000+ KM with it, was fun, but designed for desktop, still, good old days :-)

I use Google Maps for everything now + Unlimited Cell Data, works like a charm.

I bought Streets and Trips a number of years back, and it included a USB-based GPS widget. That allowed me to take a plain ol' laptop and have it show itself on a S&T's map, in offline mode, even if I was in the middle of nowhere.

There's still a market for that IMO, even if MS doesn't see it.

There's a market for a lot of things. Just not enough of one to make it worth it to Microsoft. Other companies will step up if the demand is really there.

_dandy_ said,
I bought Streets and Trips a number of years back, and it included a USB-based GPS widget. That allowed me to take a plain ol' laptop and have it show itself on a S&T's map, in offline mode, even if I was in the middle of nowhere.

There's still a market for that IMO, even if MS doesn't see it.

Microsoft and Nokia are providing Here Maps which work offline. And a Windows phone used as a hotspot also shares it's GPS information with a computer, creating a pretty handy offline, middle of nowhere map system.

It is only a matter of choice for Apple and Google to enable real time location sharing in hotspot mode if they haven't.

EricP said,

Microsoft and Nokia are providing Here Maps which work offline. And a Windows phone used as a hotspot also shares it's GPS information with a computer, creating a pretty handy offline, middle of nowhere map system.

It is only a matter of choice for Apple and Google to enable real time location sharing in hotspot mode if they haven't.

WP shares GPS over wifi hotspot? Since when?

No, I've been using it with my standard Nokia 920 running Windows Phone 8. Not sure when it started, I've only been using internet sharing for a few months. But it was working the moment I started. The update frequency is somewhere in the neighborhood of 5s intervals.

Maybe it works with Bluetooth. I paired my laptop and phone. When paired the laptop can turn on the dormant hotspot by simply trying to connect to it. When Bluetooth is off, the hotspot SID is not visible and you manually have to enable it on the phone.

Edited by EricP, Jul 11 2014, 6:41pm :

I remember long, long ago when MapPoint and Streets and Trips was a huge move from those big book atlases (see grid C5 on page 126), slightly before MapQuest became ubiquitous.

I used MapPoint all the time for a long while even after google maps, mapquest, etc became popular. At the time it was so much easier to use (drag and drop routes, etc, before you could do that in the browser). And having all the maps offline was terrific for trips when connectivity was spotty.

But I agree its time for them to go, at least as far as consumer versions are concerned. Perhaps they should keep the corporate line going (and given their history, they probably will if a company is big enough and asks)

Worst thing ever. What about the professional folks that use excel with mappoint to plot where to drive to visit their customers? I use mappoint daily with over 1000 pushpins to get a birds eye view of customers in the area when I am near by to visit. Bing maps have that functionality?

it is/was "Streets and Trips", one of my most used tools from them by me. but even then it had compatibility issues with their own OS's. they actually kicked it to the curb as far as quality awhile ago. they should sell it to DeLorme Mapping as they have their own product that has a different set of issues that could be resolved with a joining of the two.

Never heard of 'MapPoint' and 'Streets and Tips' until I read this. Web interface is the way to go (always up to date).

'There's a point when all good things must come to an end.' - that slogan would actually apply to quite a few of Microsoft's latest products also.

I think it was quite popular back in the Windows 95 / 98 days, back when a lot of people didn't have internet access, or if they did it was slow and expensive.

I remember hearing a lot about it back then, likewise the Encarta Encyclopedia was really popular. That helped me with my homework so many times when we never had the internet at home.

Hahaiah said,
What about commercial users?

The page on Microsoft's site addresses that. They have recommended alternatives for business intelligence and a link to the Bing Maps API for application developers.

Bit worrying that everything is now moving towards the browser when the connectivity infrastructure isn't always there. Understandable on MS's behalf though.

Zlain said,
Bit worrying that everything is now moving towards the browser when the connectivity infrastructure isn't always there. Understandable on MS's behalf though.

Considering how many people already use google maps/earth or bing maps, I think the infrastructure is there and Microsoft know it.

I don't know if it's really an application versus browser thing so much as the fact that the map data is already out there and free through other sources. MapPoint just isn't needed anymore.

Zlain said,
Bit worrying that everything is now moving towards the browser when the connectivity infrastructure isn't always there. Understandable on MS's behalf though.

Also Microsoft and Nokia are providing Here Maps Apps for free. You can download maps for everywhere on the globe, letting the apps work offline for directions. The data is updated regularly for free too, beating most GPSs.

dvb2000 said,

Considering how many people already use google maps/earth or bing maps, I think the infrastructure is there and Microsoft know it.

What has that got to do with anything. This programme was to help integrate maps with existing apps.??

Zlain said,

What has that got to do with anything. This programme was to help integrate maps with existing apps.??

Nitpick, yet it annoys me when people use programme to refer to computer programs. Google it or Bing it.

Zlain said,

What has that got to do with anything. This programme was to help integrate maps with existing apps.??

What? People integrate google earth/maps with programs all the time. Why keep supporting old inflexible programs like Mapoint or streets& trips?