Mumbai, India, December 5, 2014: Mail.Ru Group today announced that MAPS.ME Pro, the previously paid version of the MAPS.ME app, is now available at no charge on major mobile platforms. Now known simply as MAPS.ME, the free app includes extensive offline maps, routing information, offline search and the ability to bookmark locations – features that led to MAPS.ME Pro’s listing as a Best Apps of 2014 on the Google Play Store. Additionally, Mail.Ru announced plans to open-source the MAPS.ME data in 2015, to contribute to the thriving OpenStreetMap community. Mail.Ru acquired MAPS.ME in November of 2014 as part of a strategy to enable My.com, its subsidiary focused on global audiences, to offer additional products and services to a growing base of users.
The first version of MAPS.ME was released in 2011, and since then the apps have seen over 7M installs. MAPS.ME contains mapping data for over 345 countries and islands, and is one of the top rated apps in the Travel category in more than 100 countries.
Built on the OpenStreetMap project, MAPS.ME quickly amassed rave reviews and a devoted following due to its lightning speed, detailed database and seamless offline functionality. With advanced data compression, MAPS.ME circumvents expensive data plans and roaming charges, allowing users to download and store maps for offline use. Unlike most mobile map applications, whose offline maps provide at best a limited level of detail, MAPS.ME’s offline functionality is fast, seamless, and comprehensive; users can even create driving routes and search for addresses offline. Maps are rendered quickly and clearly on the screen, and use very little space on the mobile device.
OpenStreetMap is created and updated by editors just like Wikipedia articles; users can edit maps, adding towns, roads, locations and points of interest. MAPS.ME’s database is constantly updated by the global community of enthusiasts that has grown exponentially to 1.8 million members. This crowdsourced model creates the most detailed and current maps available on any app.
“The idea behind OpenStreetMap is amazing; the success of MAPS.ME shows that mapping data is most accurate when sourced locally, from people all over the world, based on the roads and communities they are familiar with,” said Dmitry Grishin, CEO of Mail.Ru Group and founder of My.com. “We think that making the MAPS.ME application free and available to everyone will be a critical step towards the development of a global, universally accurate mapping system.”
Mail.Ru Group (LSE:MAIL, listed since November 5, 2010) is a leading Internet company in the high-growth Russian-speaking Internet markets (Russia is Europe’s largest Internet market measured by the number of users, comScore). Mail.Ru Group’s sites reach approximately 96% of Russian Internet users on a monthly basis (comScore, September 2014) and the Company is the sixth largest Internet business globally, based on the total time spent (comScore, September 2014).
In line with the “communitainment” (communication plus entertainment) strategy, the Company is moving rapidly to build an integrated communications and entertainment platform. The Company owns Russia’s leading email service and one of Russia’s largest internet portals, Mail.Ru. The Company operates all three of the Russian language social networks, Vkontakte (VK), Odnoklassniki (OK) and Moi Mir (My World), and Russia’s largest online games business. The Company’s portfolio also includes Mail.Ru Agent and ICQ – two instant messaging services popular in Russia and CIS.
The Company holds an equity stake in Qiwi (1.31%). The Company also holds a number of small venture capital investments in various Internet companies in Russia, Ukraine and Israel. In November 2013, The Company launched My.com in the US and later globally to provide communication and entertainment products and services in non-Russian speaking countries.
My.com is a subsidiary of Mail.Ru Group, the largest Internet company in Russian-speaking countries with an audience of more than 100 million users (comScore, September 2013), that is publicly traded on the London Stock Exchange (LSE:MAIL, listed since November 5, 2010). My.com’s vision is to build an integrated communication and entertainment platform, dubbed ‘Communitainment,’ beginning with a family of mobile apps and games, and most recently, expanding to PC games bringing immersive, massively multiplayer online experiences to the masses.