Yesterday I was quoted in the New York Times:
“If you are a site just looking to put a pizzeria on a map, it’s no big deal, but if you are trying to put a brand around your mapping, it’s a big deal,” said James Fee, chief evangelist at WeoGeo, which provides location data. “Google says it will affect a very small number of users, but I have heard it will touch 30 or 40 percent of people who really depend on maps for their business. It could cost you tens of thousands of dollars a month.”
Now I assure you that I didn’t use the word “pizzeria”. I’m 110% sure that word isn’t used west of the Hudson. My point here is not just that people are going to have to pay for using Google Maps in the next year but enforcing how you can use the APIs themselves is going to be a problem. The fact that I’d have to use Google Maps tiles to display Google Geocoding results just kills that service for me. No matter how awesome Google’s geocoding is, I (WeoGeo) just can’t use their tiles.
You should read the Times article though. Quentin did a great job outlining the business case for using Google or going a different route.