Company to launch Boston social map

A new kind of map that incorporates real-time data and tweets is set tolaunch in Boston Monday on the Web and through a free mobile app.

A new kind of map that incorporates real-time data and tweets is set to launch in Boston Monday on the Web and through a free mobile app.

 

Boston will be the fourth city for CityMaps, which has already launched in Austin, New York and San Francisco.

 

Instead of focusing on directions or routes, the map focuses on the social experience.



Cities are displayed like a visual Yellow Pages with company logos and names at their locations. By tapping or clicking on a business, users can access tweets from business owners, daily coupons or deals, Foursquare reviews and pictures, menus, OpenTable reservations, movie times, parking garage prices and other business information.

 

The maps incorporate real-time data that is refreshed every 60 minutes, said CityMaps co-founder Elliot Cohen.

 

"We're trying to give people the best way to discover and share their city," said Cohen. "Online maps really, to this day, are still all about going from Point A to Point B -- and we saw that there really hadn't been any true innovation or changes in ... what online maps can be in the era of social media."

New York City's tourism organization partnered with the company last month, citing its use of easy-to-recognize logos and symbols.

When it launches Monday, the Boston version will include select neighborhoods including downtown, the South End, South Boston, Chinatown, the Back Bay and parts of Cambridge.

Cohen said he hopes to work with users and crowd source the best ways to improve and expand the map.

He said he expects the map to be big in Boston because of its tourist attractions and large population of students who are new to the city.

 
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