Over the past few months we have been assisting our clients with the changes brought in by Google regarding its Maps API.
Firstly, a note on what API stands for: API is an Application Programming Interface and is a way in which different applications can communicate with each other. The main way that communication with the API is secured is by use of an API key (or keys). This enables other applications to access your account, but without the worry of you having to release your password for all to see.
In June this year, Google began to withdraw key-less access to the Google Maps platform. This meant that the generation of an API key became a requirement for all websites wishing to use Google Maps on them. Billing on the Maps platform would also need to be enabled.
Once these requirement were met, the Maps key could be placed in the website source code on pages where a map is displayed.
Google still offers a generous free usage quota, so many clients will probably still be using the service for free, with the added benefits for clients that they can also view some analytics on the maps usage.