Google has introduced major changes to the Google Maps API which now runs under the name, Google Maps Platform. With this update in effect, there is now a new pay-as-you-go pricing model where users are required to have a valid API key. To learn about the changes in-depth, visit Google’s guide for existing users and their FAQ on pricing changes.

How does the new change affect me?

It was announced back in June 2016 that Google would stop supporting keyless usage, meaning any request that doesn’t include an API key or Client ID. This update will give you the ability to scale easily with less downtime and fewer issues with performance.

“Keyless calls to the Maps JavaScript API and Street View API will return low-resolution maps watermarked with “for development purposes only.” Keyless calls to any of the following APIs will return an error: Maps Static API (including Static Street View), Directions API, Distance Matrix API, Geocoding API, Geolocation API, Places API, Roads API, and Time Zone API.”

Google Cloud

Beginning June 11, 2018, it is a requirement for you to have a valid API key and a Google Cloud Platform billing account to access the core Google Maps APIs. Once you have billing enabled, you will be given access to $200 of free monthly usage. If you exceed the $200 of free monthly usage with your total sum of all Google Maps Platform services, you will be charged automatically. To keep your budget on track, you can set billing alerts and daily quotas in your Google account.

Billing has been enabled, but the map still isn’t working?

Before you make any changes. make sure that the problem isn’t related to your API keys. If the error is showing up as ‘API limit reached’, or the map shows ‘for development purposes only’ as an overlay, make sure to contact Google billing support.

“See our YouTube videos for quick tutorials on setting up billing, creating and securing an API key, and more.” – Google Cloud