Yes, surprisingly Microsoft MapPoint 2009 has been released a few weeks before Microsoft Streets and Trips 2009. And honestly, all the MapPoint users do deserve this "earlier" release, since they've had to wait for this update for over two years, since May of 2006, when MapPoint 2006 (the North American version) was released. What has changed since MapPoint 2006? MapPoint 2009 Map data
MapPoint 2009 now has approximately 2 years fresher map data than the previous MapPoint 2006 version. In the North American version of MapPoint 2009, beside the usual USA and Canada data, I now see a huge improvement in Mexico. While the address find feature is still not functional for Mexico, the country now does contain street-level map coverage for even many smaller towns. Are you planning a vacation in Mexico soon? Microsoft Mappoint 2009 is the only GPS product that I'm aware of, that actually does include navigable map data for popular tourist destinations including locations such as Acapulco, Ixtapa, Mazatlan and Puerto Vallarta. Full-screen navigation mode
Full screen navigation mode was not present in MapPoint 2006. It was introduced later in Streets & Trips 2007, and now the feature is in MapPoint 2009, too.
For those who don't know: Microsoft Streets & Trips is a subset of Microsoft MapPoint. Streets & Trips is a consumer product costing about $30 (software only). Mappoint is the business version of the product. It includes demographic data for business analysis. MapPoint can be programmatically controllable (unlike S&T). Mappoint costs approximately $300.
Streets & Trips releases a new version annually. MapPoint updates less frequently. Last two versions were MapPoint 2006, and MapPoint 2004. Estimated Drive Time feature
Same as the previous feature - not in MapPoint 2006, but introduced a few months later in Streets & Trips 2007. Now MapPoint 2009 users can finally enjoy it as well. Hmm, but is anyone using MapPoint for GPS navigation? Likely not too many, since Streets & Trips is so much less expensive, and it updates annually. Integration with Live Search Again, not in MapPoint 2006, but I've used this feature numerous times in Streets & Trips 2007 and 2008. This is a very handy feature that uses online database to search for POIs (points of interest). The problem with the earlier Streets & Trips implementation was bad geocoding (in my experience). The new implementation of this feature in MapPoint 2009 has corrected this issue. Reverse Route option
A click of a button can reverse the order of stops in the Route Planner pane. This feature was added to Microsoft Streets and Trips 2007, and now it is also available to Microsoft MapPoint 2009 users. Navigation map view (3D-view)
This feature was introduced in Streets & Trips 2008. It was then called "Perspective map view". There were problems with it, and the feature didn't become popular. Issues reported by users have been addressed, and it appears to be usable now. I had a chance to briefly test to today. It works as it should. This feature is optional. Turn it on if you like it, Don't use it if you don't. I personally do like it. The first picture above shows MapPoint 2009 with the feature off, and the second picture is me driving home with the feature on. Automatic re-routing
First introduced last year in Streets & Trips 2008. Most users liked it, but some users said they wanted the ability to turn it off. Microsoft understood the concerns involved, and the new implementation of this feature in MapPoint 2009 allows users to turn in off, or keep it on. Voice direction prompts that include street names
This feature is new to MapPoint 2009, and it will be new even to Microsoft Streets and Trips 2009, when it releases some time in September 2008. Previous versions would simply say: "Turn right",the new version will say: "Turn right on Main Street". "Pan" and "Select" tools
Originally Posted by taoyue
The single greatest improvement in usability is the integrated pan/select cursor. Left-drag to pan, right-drag to select. You no longer need to keep switching back-and-forth between the two tools when moving around the map. Saves a huge amount of clicks and mouse travel in normal usage. Nitpick: discoverability of feature.
S&T Team wrote an article about this feature: Where did the "Pan" and "Select" tools go on the Toolbar in S&T 2009? The following are random new items located in MapPoint 2009 Options:
There is no longer the need to visit online communities to read about rumors of upcoming update. Your Mappoint 2009 will automatically notify you when MapPoint 2010, or MapPoint 2011, or Mappoint 2012 becomes available.
Remove the check-mark if you just cannot stand Microsoft Anna mispronouncing the name of your street.
I see truckers, RVers, and others sending thank-you cards to Microsoft for not making the auto re-route mandatory.
This feature will make many people very happy! Start GPS when program starts! Finally!
Nice touch, Microsoft! Related Reading http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/2538-mappoint-dummies http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/2738-review-microsoft-mappoint-2009-a http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/3459-mapping-tools-microsoft-mappoint http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/2737-review-microsoft-mappoint-2009-europe