Microsoft and Nokia partnered almost a year ago to bring a better mapping experience to Bing. Today they have finally announced some results from the partnership. Their plan is to bring a unified mapping experience to Windows Phone and online maps. They talked about three major points:
Common color palette for road map style We’ve updated our color palette to create a cleaner and consistent view of roads and landmarks resulting in a map that’s easier to interpret. For instance, the new road color is further clarified from rivers while not competing with traffic colors or overlaid information.
Celebrate Typography We focused significantly on improving various typography components in order to provide further clarity on maps including font updates, improved readability and contextual labeling. Type size hierarchy further delineates classes of labels. The user watches city names consistently grow and become more transparent through the zoom levels. Small type is demystified from its surroundings with a technique that reduces clutter instead of adding glows or ever-present strokes. The right use of typography helps our customers consume mapping details more quickly.
Using Visual Hierarchy to create Focus and maintain context At each level, there’s an appropriate amount of information conveyed to the user. Too little or too much information can lead to overload and thereby an unpleasant user experience. We’ve redesigned with this in mind, so a very different level of information is presented to you when you zoom compared to when you pan out. Go in for detail, pull back for context. We strive to keep the orientation and context of a user within the map surface persistent across various levels of zoom.