Should You Upgrade to MapPoint 2013?


MapPoint 2013 for North America was introduced in July 2012 and at the time of this writing can be purchased through the Microsoft website for $299.99.  (We also recommend the reputable reseller that offers a significant discount below the retail price.)   Microsoft doesn’t offer just data updates for MapPoint, so you need to repurchase the software to get the new data too.  If you already own a previous version, is the newest version worth the cost?

Although the new MapPoint has a somewhat new look and feel, there really aren’t any substantive changes in functionality over MapPoint 2011, and so the main criterium for upgrading is the new data it contains.  Here’s a comparison of what you get for recent versions:



The addition of over 200,000 miles of navigable roads is a significant increase over the MapPoint 2010 version, and if you use CDXZipStream and MapPoint for critical routing calculations involving deliveries, cost analyses, or route optimization, you should strongly consider upgrading to MapPoint 2013.   This will also be somewhat dependent upon the area of coverage, since new road construction is less likely in developed urban areas;  issues such as this can only be considered on a case by case basis.

“Points of interest” include restaurants, airports, casinos, etc.  (A new feature of MapPoint 2013 is that it also contains hotel and restaurant reviews.)     Points of interest are not currently incorporated in any CDXZipStream functions, so if you use MapPoint only for its support of CDXZipStream , they should not be a factor in your decision.

We do recommend that you download the trial version of MapPoint 2013 and try it before you buy.  Run some typical routing scenarios and calculations and see if there are any significant differences.  Just make sure that you do not uninstall any previous versions during set-up, and if you decide not to buy at the end of the trial period, run a “Change/Repair” (using the Programs option in your Control Panel) on your previous MapPoint version to ensure it will continue to function properly.  Note that the trial period for MapPoint 2013 is 14 days, where for previous versions it was 60 days.  

One piece of bad news with the new release:  MapPoint 2013 is still provided only in a 32-bit version.  It can be installed on 64-bit Windows operating systems, but is only compatible with 32-bit Microsoft Office (and Excel).  As a result, any add-ins that work with MapPoint must also be 32-bit.   This includes CDXZipStream as well as the MapPoint Office com add-in that allows direct access to MapPoint from within Office.   Microsoft provides both 32 and 64-bit versions as part of the license for Office 2010, so you can pick and choose the version you want to run, although you can't install both versions on the same machine. Alternatively, you can also install an older version of Excel (2007 or 2003) on the same computer with Office 2010 64-bit and successfully run 32-bit MapPoint 2013 and CDXZipStream.  


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