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What is Protomaps?


Protomaps is an alternative to hosted map services.

An interactive map on the web is powered by tiles, usually fetched through an API like this:{z}/{x}/{y}.png?api_key=ABCD1234

Protomaps is a system designed around single static files read in byte ranges from cloud storage:

This storage format is designed to scale to hundreds of millions of tiles.

You'll most often want to use it with vector basemaps, which are the common features in the background of map applications, like buildings, oceans, and highways. This makes Protomaps a replacement for hosted services like the Google Maps API at a fraction of the cost and under your control, with no keys or servers to manage.

Self-hosted made simple

Self-hosted infrastructure is usually a pain. Open source software like PostgreSQL requires backups and administration, meaning most developers outsource operations to a SaaS company.

Protomaps is designed around static, read-only datasets that are deployed by simply copying large files to S3 or any compatible storage platform. More demanding use cases can use a content delivery network based on AWS Lambda or Cloudflare Workers.


  • Protomaps is built around vector tiles for sharp client-side rendering, customizability, and compatibility with any frontend.

  • Protomaps builds upon OpenStreetMap, a free and open dataset that powers maps by Facebook, Apple, Amazon and more. Protomaps finally makes hosting planet-scale OpenStreetMap possible without being a billion-dollar company - it's all simple files on blob storage.

  • Protomaps is production-ready. With CDN integration, it delivers the fastest possible cached map tiles to your users around the world.

  • Protomaps is multi-vendor. It has been carefully designed to work with any S3-compatible storage provider, and advanced deployment works seamlessly with either Cloudflare or AWS - no lock-in!

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