Until recently, our docs have focused on describing features rather than telling a story. We chatted to some developers and came up with a new design for our tutorials. We’d love to know what you think of them.

Developers tell us they want quick, straightforward guides on how to integrate the Google Maps APIs into their app. The most common thing people want to do is to add a map with a marker. Just show me how to do that.


Developers are also looking for complete, step-by-step tutorials for the most common use cases. Guides that go all the way from a to z, with no deviations.

And they want code. Front and foremost. All the code.

Here are some examples of the new-look tutorials:


Each tutorial provides the entire development project, especially useful for the native mobile APIs. The doc page goes hand in hand with a new sample app on GitHub. For example, here’s the code for the current place tutorial on Android.

Each page includes a visual illustration of what you’ll achieve by following the tutorial. A working demo is ideal (such as the visualizing data tutorial for the Google Maps JavaScript API), otherwise a screenshot (as we’ve done for the native mobile APIs).

We want to make it easy for developers to find the guides. So, we’re adding tutorial showcases to the API overview pages. To date we’ve created the showcases for Android, iOS, and JavaScript. We’re also collecting together all the tutorials for the Maps JavaScript API in one place.


We’ve made a good start, but there’s plenty of change still to come. What would you like to see more of? Are we on the right track? The tech writing team would love your ideas—please add comments to this post.

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Posted by Sarah Maddox, Technical Writer, Google Maps APIs