Geocoding from Excel: Yahoo -vs- Bing -vs- Google

I have already looked at geocoding with Bing Maps -vs- Google Maps and Google Maps is a clear winner. Yahoo Placemaker is pretty good at first glance even though it claims not to be a geocoder. Note that I am just using the basic REST URI query in all these examples – since the whole point to access directly from Excel. Comparing capabilities under Javascript would be a whole different ballgame.
  • Yahoo require you to get a Key to use Placemaker which they call and Application ID. In this downloadable example, I am using my key. If you use this code for anything, please get your own and follow the Yahoo rules on usage. Google do not require you to get a key, but limit your usage to a small number of queries daily.
  • Yahoo was as good as or better than Google in dealing with ambiguity.
  • The Yahoo response is clean and does not contain a bunch of unnecessary waffle.
  • The Yahoo response is even simpler than the Bing one, and easier to deal with and decode. It is so similar to Bing that I was able to use the same modules to deal with both, so implementing Placeholder was about a 30 minute job, mainly to find out what the field names were.
  • Yahoo provides less detail than both Google and Bing, but most of what you would need is there. It does not provide a ‘cleaned up, full address’ field though, which the other 2 do. On the other hand, this can easily be constructed from other fields.
  • Its confusing that Yahoo Placeholder is not actually Yahoo Maps. Yahoo Maps is actually OVI maps, which I haven’t tried .. yet.

Author: brucemcp

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