In October Google announced the cost for Google Maps if you use above 25,000 map loads per day. Many developers balked at paying for a service that had been free for several years, though it affected fewer than 1% of developers using the Google Maps API. Now the search giant is lowering the cost from $4-8 CPM to a fixed price of $0.50 per 1,000 map views. It will also start enforcing the price, though the company says this process is not automated.
One of the most important--and too often forgotten--pieces of a successful API is promoting what developers have built. Doing so should be a win-win, as both platform and developer should benefit from third-party apps being discovered by users. Location-sharing service FourSquare just re-vamped its application gallery and now any developer can be included.
It used to be you could change anything layered on top of a map, but you couldn't change the underlying map itself. Now you have several options for changing the color palette and the visibility of different objects that make up your base map. The options vary on the amount you can customize and how much work is required. But all three of these APIs can have you map scripting with style.