Using OSM instead of Google Maps #2787

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Robot8A opened this Issue Jan 5, 2017 · 46 comments

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@Robot8A
Robot8A commented Jan 5, 2017

Hi, I'm wondering why do you use Google Maps when you send/recieve a location.
It would be great if you could use OpenStreetMap (it's open source!) instead of GMaps, or if not, let you choose the map provider that you prefer.
Thanks.

@Robot8A
Robot8A commented Jan 6, 2017

I prefer using open source software, and Google Maps is propietary.
Google Maps is run by a company with its own interests, whereas OSM is run by a non profit organisation.
The map data in OSM is editable by everyone (think of it as the Wikipedia of the maps), so it's mostly up to date, and overall most detailed as Google Maps.
I think it fits better the Telegram philosophy, because it is open source aswell.
If you want to know more about the project, go check the Wikipedia article about OSM: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenStreetMap
or the OSM webpage: osm.org

Said that, I personally no longer use Google Maps anymore, not even on mobile phone (I've uninstalled it), and I would love to see that my favourite messaging app lets its users choose what map they want to use.

@john-preston
Member

@Robot8A Regarding tdesktop you mean open links there (how does a link with latitude and longitude and a dropped pin point look using OSM?) or using small images in chat message history (how does a link to such image with desired coordinates, zoom level and a dropped pin point look using OSM?)

@Zverik
Zverik commented Jan 9, 2017

Also you would have to pay for Google Static Maps API that you currently use, if usage exceeds 25k views per day: https://developers.google.com/maps/documentation/static-maps/usage-limits

@sabas
sabas commented Jan 11, 2017 edited

I support this, it would also be in the spirit of more privacy (than other messaging services).
See Eraser Map as a privacy-focused map application based on OSM https://github.com/mapzen/eraser-map

@bcalik
bcalik commented Jan 12, 2017

OSM is not up to date in most of countries.

@Zverik
Zverik commented Jan 12, 2017

No map is up to date anywhere. But OSM is free to use and is updated by 40k mappers monthly.

@KamranMackey

Sure, but Google Maps is better and is far more updated. I highly doubt Telegram will switch mapping services. Google Maps is fantastic.

@Zverik
Zverik commented Jan 12, 2017

Please add "around my house" when you post such comparisons. Here is Velikiye Luki in Russia, for example.

@bcalik
bcalik commented Jan 12, 2017 edited

Here is KaฤŸฤฑthane / Istanbul / Turkey. Location of our company.
No street names, buildings, nothing on OSM. Also missing some roads, wrong names etc.

We have a vehicle tracking product, and none of our clients wants to use OSM. We tried to use once, and we got a lot of negative feedback.

@bcalik
bcalik commented Jan 12, 2017

People also share location on a messenger app for navigation/routing purposes. Since Google Maps also provides navigation solutions on all platforms, it is a much better choice.

@fredao
fredao commented Jan 12, 2017

@bcalik FUD - "it is a much better choice."

@fredao
fredao commented Jan 12, 2017

@bcalik OSM also provides navigation solutions on all platforms - did you know that?

@bcalik
bcalik commented Jan 12, 2017

How? I can set route of my Android Auto car with one click from Google Maps.

@fredao
fredao commented Jan 12, 2017

yes, and I do it with Maps.me :) ... and that is only ONE example ... ;-)

@bcalik
bcalik commented Jan 12, 2017 edited

So you mean, when someone send me location, then I open it on tdesktop, it will redirect me to some unknown web app that uses OSM as a map layer, then I should somehow open same location on Maps.me app, then etc.. And does it even support android auto / apple carplay.. Or If I am using an iOS device then there is no way telegram can redirect me to Maps.me or other custom apps.

Edit: Also, since Maps.me is based on OSM, and so it is missing street names, buildings, etc on many countries, it is not effective to use as a navigation for most people.

@Robot8A
Robot8A commented Jan 12, 2017

The Geo URI exists, so maybe it could be implemented so telegram links to the URI, and then you can open the location with your preferred navigation app.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geo_URI_scheme

@Robot8A
Robot8A commented Jan 12, 2017 edited

Maybe not for the desktop version, because not many browsers support the geo: URI yet, but maybe for a mobile implementation of Telegram.

@bcalik
bcalik commented Jan 12, 2017

@Robot8A: Directions does not mean navigation. It has to consider traffic, tolls etc.

@az09
az09 commented Jan 13, 2017

No war! Let then this will have a choice of several options. Then compare

@MrYadro
MrYadro commented Jan 13, 2017 edited

Google Maps or not, question was about "Can we have another provider for people who don't like to send his/her data to corporate company" In some cases Google maps is better, in some OSM, maybe you like Apple maps, WHO CARES. Every map has missing data. Having buildings around on a map doesn't mean that they are around in real life. As I know Google maps takes AGES to remove buildings.

P.S. @KamranMackey if you think OSM is bad, call unknown company @uber and ask why do they use it. Same goes to @mapbox, and many gis applications.

@fredao
fredao commented Jan 13, 2017 edited

@Zverik @MrYadro please have in mind @KamranMackey is very young. ;-)

@bcalik
bcalik commented Jan 13, 2017

@MrYadro: Uber is using Google Maps. I have just checked from their iOS app.

@MrYadro
MrYadro commented Jan 13, 2017 edited

@bcalik I did not said a word about their app. OSM is about data, you can build anything location related based on it.

https://www.uber.com/legal/other/data-providers/

@santamariense

Some places are better in OSM, some in GMaps. In my city I think OSM is better (https://goo.gl/ctGaHN). The question is that OSM is more about the telegram's philosophy. The users of telegram will help OSM rise better. And more... OSM cannot use GMaps to get the map better, but if Google want to use OSM, it can as long as Google cite about the source (www.osm.org/copyright). OSM is getting better day after day and it is becoming the best map of the world.

@santamariense

@bcalik, You can become a volunteer and help editing the map http://www.openstreetmap.org/edit?editor=id&way=35116146#map=17/41.08408/28.98628

@auchri
Member
auchri commented Jan 13, 2017

You can edit the gmap too

@sabas
sabas commented Jan 13, 2017

@auchri not anymore https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!topic/map-maker/UEN0wxhj6Rs
(editing geometry will go away in march)

BTW this issue is a feature request, not a discussion on which map is better.

@santamariense

@auchri , The MapMaker is being deactived. All you contribute to GMaps are their property. All you contribute to OSM is humanity property. You can use OSM DATA, but you cannot use Google DATA (even you have contributed). The question is: Do you want waste your time helping a big company getting more and more the world dominance or do you want waste your time helping to build a thing to the humanity?

@yopaseopor

Do you can configure GMaps to show any specific data? Nor, you can't
In OSM Yes, you can. All you see in this issue is about Osmcarto, one of lots of the renders you can find working with OSM, because is not a map, it is a data base, a gigantic geodata base. And with this data you can do the best map ever, with the specific data you want. And if the data is not here yet....you can add it. Think in Wikipedia: Which did won: Encarta or Wikipedia? History will repeat it again

Also this issue is for being able to choose, what is wrong with that?

@fredao
fredao commented Jan 14, 2017

@KamranMackey as you are young and maybe you are still interested to learn that the world of maps is not only black and white https://youtu.be/552lYVwoz2o

@thisconnect

I support this, it would also be in the spirit of more privacy (than other messaging services).

It is surprising that no one else has privacy concerns in this discussion.

@mxa
mxa commented Jan 15, 2017 edited

AFAIK Removing gmaps would also remove one proprietary binary blob from Telegram Android, so that it doesn't need to be ripped out in the F-droid version. OSM is the way!

@Robot8A
Robot8A commented Jan 16, 2017 edited

Yeah, my original idea was to post this issue on every platform, but unfortunately Telegram Android doesn't have issues.
Telegram FOSS (the F-Droid version) already has this issue, they have the location deactivated because they don't want to use propietary libraries, if you want to comment on this issue: slp/Telegram-FOSS#121

@denadai2
denadai2 commented Jan 18, 2017 edited

I chose Telegram because it is a bit more distant to "big companies who can steal your data". This could sound stupid, but it's not to me.

Choosing OSM instead of Gmaps could have these impacts:

  • freedom from big companies like Google (privacy)
  • less traceability, especially in war zones (e.g. Africa) where the Government (in civil war) could be interested in tracing you
  • it could help improving an Open and crowd-founded/sourced solution as OSM, which we all should support no matter what. As @bcalik and @fredao said, OSM is good and bad in many locations but it is good ESPECIALLY where Google doesn't have commercial interests. However, let's use it and push foward contributions to OSM

The integration could be done in this way:
1- share a mini image either in OSM/Gmaps
2- when you click you choose to open it in OSM/Maps.me/Apple maps or in Gmaps (right now you are not allowing anything. It's arbitrary)

@mxa
mxa commented Jan 18, 2017

Worth mentioning in this context is that the OSM community is using Telegram as one of their channels of communication.
http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/List_of_OSM_centric_Telegram_accounts

@Skippern

Just did a map comparison of my home town, where OSM is rapidly improving map quality, while Google is showing outdated information. Since OSM is user-driven community, increased exposure will make it more detailed and more up to date by the minute, while Google and other commercial services rely fully on release of official datas, which might take months of processing before being entered into the map.

@gorn
gorn commented Jan 25, 2017

support this, it would also be in the spirit of more privacy (than other messaging services).
It is surprising that no one else has privacy concerns in this discussion.

It is surprising that telegram whose first argument on its own homepage under "Why switch to Telegram?" is PRIVACY does not really care about privacy. Or does it?

@amunizp
amunizp commented Feb 18, 2017

So to add up:

  • Some users want to be offered the choice of OSM compatible API
  • Ap developers concerned that Gmaps will probably cost money when number of users increase. non-gratis
  • gMaps is non-libre
  • gMaps has tracking
  • OSM is not that popular with some who have good support for their area.
  • iOS dropped gMaps in favour of an OSM based app some years ago.
  • OSM seems to only get better while gMaps probably peaked?
  • Anything else?
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