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Maps Blog


Announcing the new Bing Maps site with a redesigned left-rail and broader access to Map Apps & StreetSide

Today, we’re happy to announce the following additions and changes to Bing Maps:

  1. Launch of the V7 AJAX control
  2. Redesigned left-rail
  3. Broader access to Map Apps & StreetSide

AJAX V7 Control

The launch of the next version the Bing Maps AJAX control provides consumers improved browsing performance, updated navigation controls, enhanced Bird’s eye and optimization for mobile.

You’ll notice the different position for the navigation and map layer options. Previously, these controls were in the upper left of the map and now run across the top of the map. Also, the Bird’s-eye option now refers to both our exclusive Bird’s-eye 45-degree angled view and a traditional top-down aerial view (there is a toggle to switch between the two).

About three weeks ago, we talked about the enhanced Bird’s eye that was being added to the AJAX site. The enhanced Bird’s eye adds synthetic building models for larger buildings (built using a combination of top-down and Bird’s eye views).

"Enhanced" Bird's eye“Enhanced” Bird’s-eye

The “New” Left-Rail

We’ve updated the layout for easier navigation. So, one thing we changed is the left-side rail for, giving you a direct on-ramp to what you want to do: get driving, walking, or transit directions; view live traffic and traffic cameras; view local restaurants and businesses; and explore Map Apps.

Bing Maps Redesigned Left Rail 

We feel the new design really surfaces how you can use Bing Maps to make decisions on which mode of transportation to use, when is the right time to avoid traffic, where to find local businesses, and how to experience Map Apps.

Unifying the Reach of AJAX with the Richness of Silverlight

Now, everyone using Bing Maps can access Map Apps and StreetSide (through a Map App). These features are still built on Silverlight and users will need Silverlight installed to use them. To access Map Apps, click either the “explore map apps” link or the Map Apps button in the lower-left of the screen. Use the search box or change the sort to find the map app you’re looking for.

Bing Maps New Mapp App Gallery 

I look forward to hearing feedback about the new Bing Maps site and the accessibility of Map Apps & StreetSide to all of our users. Enjoy!

Follow me @BingMaps ^BH.
Learn more on Facebook & Wikipedia

Brian Hendricks
Bing Maps Product Manager


  • Here's the feedback I sent to you guys:

    The Silverlight Bing Maps takes too long too load.  It works very smoothly once it loads, but I have found that many people prefer the classic Bing maps because it loads very quickly.  On the flip side, the new AJAX version of Bing maps loads quickly but it's zooming is not nearly as smooth as the Silverlight version.  What I found awesome is that once you open a map app, it can switch to Silverlight very quickly.  In short, either make the Silverlight version load faster, or make the AJAX version smoother. (maybe you want to use the HTML5 deep zoom stuff from MS research).

  • Link?

  • "The enhanced Bird’s eye adds synthetic building models for larger buildings"

    Very nice!

  • yea i miss the smoothness of the silverlight version. =\

  • Am I missing something, where is the link to switch into the silverlight version?  Don't tell me I have to manually add /explore/ to the url.  The AJAX version falls way short of Silverlight.

    - No fullscreen....a must have for me

    - No direct access to Streetside

    - No smooth zooming

    - No zoom level presets


    All I'm saying, don't neglect or prevent access to the Silverlight version unless you are going to add these features to the AJAX version.

    A couple of other things to take a look at...

    - Make AJAX header more touch friendly

    - Enable multitouch gestures

    - That popup Map App dialog has got to go.  Please consider something like #ToggleTaskArea...perhaps #ToggleAppList, except expand the other way

  • It is nice to see that you work constantly to improve Bing. Here are my two cents:

    The header is way too big with just the single word "Maps" in it. Please improve it and give us more screen real estate for, well, the map.

    The new ajax map is flickering heavily on Chrome 8.0.

    The font rendering for satellite images is still not as good as on the street view map.

    If automatic view is selected, the contrast between the dark satellite image for the whole world and the very bright street map is too extreme. Please make the satellite images brighter.

    The icons on the lower left menu are still very unprofessional. Seriously. I would recommend an inspiration from the Metro UI language.

    Arial! Arial? As the default font? No! Please give us hundreds of million users the Segoe font as the default and only use Arial for users with machines from a different century. Thx ;)

  • Is it me, or has nothing changed? No map apps on, no new map styles, the old side bar still looks exactly the same....

  • Oh hang on. It looks like this update is for the American site only. Visiting from the UK (or manually going to looks the same as always.


  • So I switched to the Ajax version to try it, but now I can't switch back to the Silverlight version. What's up with that. There used to be a link that would allow you easily do that, I don't see it anymore.

  • Hi all - I can definitely understand the frustration around not getting access to the Bing Maps Explore site. I'll post an update to the blog as soon as possible on why we removed the option to go to the Explore site. Also, the update is indeed currently for EN-US users. I KNOW this is frustrating and I will find out more information.

  • So why is no one commenting on the fact that one can't switch back to the silverlight view from the Ajax version?

  • Why has Streetside been hidden away...  It's such a cool feature, should be on the menu bar, or as a "view" type, surely?

  • I'm in California and I don't see the updated version. I get the "old" one no matter how I browse to it. Please, please, a link!!

  • To get the Silverlight enabled version back...for now use this link...

  • I still don't see the new version, redesigned version. How to I get there?