Google has slashed the price of its Maps application programming interface (API), according to a post on the Geo Developers blog.
In a move to attract more enterprise use of the system, U.S. companies will now pay 50 cents instead of $4 for every thousand map loads, an 88 percent lower rate.
With the plunge in API costs, Google also introduced simplified usage limitations, saying that the same usage limits and pricing will now apply to applications using Styled Maps and the default Google Maps.
"We're beginning to monitor Maps API usage starting today, and, based on current usage, fees will only apply to the top 0.35 [percent] of sites regularly exceeding the published limits of 25,000 map loads every day for 90 consecutive days," Google Maps API project manager Thor Mitchell said in the post.
Mitchell also insisted that companies using the software will not see a break in the Maps service if they see a sudden surge in popularity. Instead, Google will contact them to discuss payment options.
The move comes six months after Google began charging for Maps use in January, and just days after Apple removed Google's Maps API for its own mapping service.