Consider the user …

I know it’s obvious, but it’s amazing how some companies don’t take user experience into account when designing their products.  Take for example the bike route mapping sites MapMyRide and RidewithGPS … MapMyRide appears to be the market leader given they’ve been around for a long time, but man is it painful to use.  They have a decent number of routes if you look around, but the site compresses the map to a small area and there are really a pretty gross number of ads on the page as well as on the map itself.  Their goal is of course to get you to upgrade to a paid account and certainly the incentives are there given the volume of ads … The problem for MapMyRide though is that they are not the only game in town and RidewithGPS arrived on the scene with an excellent route planner and a great map browser.

Take a look at the two screens …

From Route Planning
From Route Planning

Both are views of my local area and show available routes … so the experiences are as “parallel” as they can be to show the difference.  I went into fullscreen mode to try and maximize as much of the view as possible.

Which would you prefer to use?

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