ill make app smaller and better integrated with the web
One area we’ve been trying to improve upon with the MapBox for iPad app is the app’s size. While we currently have the benefit of shipping an entire offline-capable world map in the app itself, we are weighing in at over 160MB, which is rather large for a mobile app.
Given that our TileStream Hosting service is MBTiles-driven, and that you can use TileStream’s tiles in MapBox for iPad over the network, the next logical step is to allow you to download MBTiles documents from TileStream – or any place else, for that matter – and put them right onto your iPad for offline use. This will allow us to ship a smaller app – one that has online-only access to map tiles initially but allows you to download tiles for offline use whenever you like. So I’m working on just that.
Screenshot of the downloads manager for the MapBox iPad app
With the download feature, you will be able to pause, resume, view progress on, and cancel downloads, which continue in the background while you are working on other things, at any time. They will still work when the app is not frontmost, as well as when you restart your iPad and have partial downloads that have not yet completed. I’m hoping to make this fast and light, while impacting the rest of the iOS experience as little as possible.