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Get Started With MapLibre GL Native for iOS using UIKit

Application Screenshot

This tutorial describes how to create a simple iOS application using Swift and UIKit.

You will learn the following:

  • Add MapLibre to the iOS project.
  • Add the map view to the ViewController.
  • Create MapTiler key.
  • Initialize map and load the style.

This tutorial was written for macOS

Create new project

Open Xcode and create new project. Choose iOS -> App template. In the “Choose options for your new project” select Interface to “Storyboard”, lifecycle to “UI App Delegate”, language to “Swift”

Add MapLibre Native SDK for iOS

Add MapLibre SDK to your project using Swift Package Manager.

  1. To add a package dependency to your Xcode project, select File > Swift Packages > Add Package Dependency and enter its repository URL. You can also navigate to your target’s General pane, and in the “Frameworks, Libraries, and Embedded Content” section, click the + button, select Add Other, and choose Add Package Dependency.
  2. Either add MapTiler GitHub distribution URL (https://github.com/maptiler/maplibre-gl-native-distribution) or search for maplibre-gl-native package.
    SwiftPackage1
  3. Choose “next”. Xcode should clone the distribution repository and download the binaries. Choose both mapBox and MapBox Mobile Events libraries.
    SwiftPackage2

MapTiler Key

  1. Create MapTiler cloud account.
  2. Obtain the api key.
  3. Set the MapTilerKey property in SimpleMap_UIKit/info.plist to the value obtained in the previous step.
  4. Open the SimpleMap_UIKit.xcworkspace in Xcode and navigate to ViewController.swift. Add code to read MapTilerKey from property list.
    func getMapTilerkey() -> String {
        let mapTilerKey = Bundle.main.object(forInfoDictionaryKey: "MapTilerKey") as? String
        validateKey(mapTilerKey)
        return mapTilerKey!
    }

Initialize Map View

  1. Open the ViewController.swift file.
  2. Add the following code in the viewDidLoad method in order to construct map view.
    func viewDidLoad() {
        super.viewDidLoad()

        // retrieve MapTiler key from property list
        let mapTilerKey = getMapTilerkey()

        title = "Simple Map"
        // construct style URL
        let styleURL = URL(string: "https://api.maptiler.com/maps/streets/style.json?key=\(mapTilerKey)")
        // create the map view
        let mapView = MGLMapView(frame: view.bounds, styleURL: styleURL)
        mapView.autoresizingMask = [.flexibleWidth, .flexibleHeight]
        mapView.delegate = self
        mapView.logoView.isHidden = true
        // Set the map’s center coordinate and zoom level.
        mapView.setCenter(
            CLLocationCoordinate2D(latitude: 47.127757, longitude: 8.579139),
            zoomLevel: 10,
            animated: false)
        view.addSubview(mapView)
    }

If you would need to respond to MapView events, for example perform an action after MapView initialization finished, place the MGLMapViewDelegate protocol name after the ViewController name and set the MapView delegate reference to ViewController

class ViewController: UIViewController, MGLMapViewDelegate { 
      ...
}

and

override func viewDidLoad() {
  ...
  mapView.delegate = self
  ...
}