MapQuest is a map publisher and a free online Web mapping service owned by America Online (AOL). The company was founded in 1967 as Cartographic Services, a division of R.R. Donnelley & Sons in Chicago, Illinois. The company moved to Lancaster, Pennsylvania in 1969. The company became independent in 1994, and was renamed GeoSystems Global Corporation. It was acquired in 2000 by America Online, Inc. Their headquarters are in Lancaster and Denver, Colorado.
Donnelley began making maps with computers in the mid-1980s to generate maps for customers. Much of that code was adapted for use on the Internet to create the MapQuest web service in 1996. In 1999 the company was renamed to MapQuest to leverage the popularity of its online brand.
For a while, the website included satellite images, but later removed them. In September 2006, the Map Quest web site once again began serving satellite imagery in a new beta program.
In 2004, the company collaborated with uLocate, Research in Motion and Nextel launched MapQuest Find Me, a buddy-finder service that works on GPS-enabled mobile phones. the Find Me service lets users automatically find their location, access maps and directions and locate nearby points of interest including airports, hotels, restaurants, banks and ATMs. Users also have the ability to set up alerts to be notified when network members arrive or depart from a designated area. In 2005 the service became available on Sprint and in 2006, Boost Mobile.
In July 2006, the company created a beta version of a new feature in which users could now “Build Your Route” by adding additional stops, reorder a route (and the stops along the way), and avoid any turn or road en route.
In April 2007, the company announced a partnership with General Motors’ OnStar that will allow OnStar subscribers to plan their driving routes on MapQuest.com and send their destination right to OnStar’s Turn-by-Turn Navigation service. The OnStar Web Destination Entry pilot program will begin the summer of 2007 with a select group of OnStar subscribers.
Related Links and Resources
MapQuest.com – This website offers Internet, wireless maps and business mapping applications that help people find places and get there. The website is one of the most recognized and trusted brands on the Internet and is the leading consumer website for maps and directions.* The site provides consumers with trusted, reliable mapping and navigation solutions and offers valuable features such as aerial/hybrid imagery, multi-point routing and the ability to find the lowest gas prices.
Wireless – A suite of wireless services extends the company’s popular place search, mapping and directions services beyond the desktop to cell phones and other wireless devices. The wireless service offers free solutions for the mobile web as well as free paid voice-guided navigation applications to meet the needs of users “on-the-go.”
MapQuest Platform Services – Helps companies build rich, engaging business mapping applications with our industry-leading geospatial web services platform for a wide spectrum of internet, wireless and desktop applications. Our customers include some of the world’s most recognized names in key industries such as financial services, healthcare, real estate, retail, travel and hospitality, asset tracking, local search, and insurance. It delivers a unique combination of flexible technology and development tools, expansive mapping data, and industry expertise that can help businesses and developers realize more value from their online mapping solutions.
Gas Prices – The Gas Prices website allows you to search gas prices and gas stations by state, city and fuel type.
Toolbar – Get instant access to maps, directions and more no matter what websites you browse. The Map Quest Toolbar gives you all the power of mapping anywhere you surf. In addition to having Maps and Directions at your fingertips at all times, you get one stop access to Real Time Traffic and a convenient web search bar. Enhance your browser with toolbar features that you’ll use all the time! You’ll find this add-on application invaluable to get your favorite features and traffic conditions all in one convenient place.
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