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Using the Bing Maps API in your WP7 App

A while ago I wrote a post detailing how easy it was to use the Bing Maps API to GeoCode an address, which enables you to get the geographical position (Latitude and Longitude) of a location when only given the street address.

This has been invaluable in a number of applications since then including the TrafficMATE app which used street addresses to help create Routes to check for traffic incidents. So how exactly can we get the Lat/Long for a location when only given the street address? Well thankfully it's easy.

As in the previous post, we need to start by adding a Service Reference to our project. The Bing Maps API service that deals with Geocoding is located at http://dev.virtualearth.net/webservices/v1/geocodeservice/geocodeservice.svc

I called the reference Bing.Geocode, but feel free to call it whatever you like.

You will also need to get a developer key to use with the API, but don't worry that's easy too. Chances are that if you have already been using Bing Maps with the Map control in Windows Phone 7 then you already have one of these. If not, go get one at http://www.bingmapsportal.com/

The code that calls the Bing Maps Geocode service is fairly easy. In your XAML all you really need is a TextBox where the user can enter an address and then a Button they click to call the function.

//get lat/long for this address

GeocodeRequest request = new GeocodeRequest();


request.Credentials = new Credentials();

request.Credentials.ApplicationId = YourKey;


request.Query = this.TextBoxOrigin.Text;


GeocodeServiceClient client = new GeocodeServiceClient();

client.GeocodeCompleted += new EventHandler<GeocodeCompletedEventArgs>(client_GeocodeCompleted);


Then all you need to do is interrogate the results sent back from Bing in your GeocodeCompleted event handler.

void client_GeocodeCompleted(object sender, GeocodeCompletedEventArgs e)


    GeocodeResponse response = e.Result;

    if (response.Results.Count > 0)





As you can see from the code above, I am simply selecting the first record in the Results array and displaying the Address.FormattedAddress property. Other properties that may be useful are Address.Locality (AKA:Suburb) Address.AdminDistrict (AKA:State).

The other important fields that you will want to process are the Lat and Long. These are contained within the Location array in fields aptly named Latitude and Longitude. These could be easily returned using the syntax response.Results[0]Location[0]Latitude and response.Results[0]Location[0]Longitude.

Posted: Jan 06 2012, 07:06 by CameronM | Comments (0) RSS comment feed |
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Filed under: Windows Phone 7 | WP7

WP7 Mango Features #3: Bing Search

While on the subject of all things Bing and following on from recent posts on the new Bing Maps Tasks available to developers in the Windows Phone Mango release, I noticed another feature, called the SearchTask, is still alive and well from WP 7.0.

Although I hadn't needed to use the SearchTask previously, after a brief experiment I realised that this is another easy way to access some of the great Bing features on Windows Phone. The SearchTask, as the name suggests, launches the newly revised Bing Search app – you know the app that always stars when you accidently hit the ‘search’ button on your phone! This time however, as a developer you can actually launch this app and set the search string so that the user is taken straight to the relevant results.

private void Button_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
    SearchTask search = new SearchTask();
    search.SearchQuery = "Brisbane restaurants";

Posted: Sep 08 2011, 16:14 by CameronM | Comments (0) RSS comment feed |
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Filed under: WP7

Using the Bing Maps API

As part of developing a community directory website I needed to migrate a large number of Name/Address records from several existing systems. These records contained the usual street and suburb fields, but lacked Latitude and Longitude values.

Instead of doing the geocoding when the record is displayed in the map, I decided to utilise the Bing Maps API to perform the geooding of these addresses and store the resulting Latitude and Longitude in the database.

To perform the geocoding I used the Geocode Service, which is part of Bing Maps SOAP Services. According to their website

Microsoft® Bing Maps SOAP Services is a set of programmable SOAP services that allow you to match addresses to the map, search for points of interest, integrate maps and imagery, return driving directions, and incorporate other location intelligence into your Web application.

The first step is to sign up for your Bing Maps API key – it's free and painless, especially if you have a Windows Live account already.

Our Address Class

As this project was dealing with the names and addresses of organisations, I created a simple class to store the Organisation details and another to store the Addresses where the organisation operated. The important parts of the OrganisationAddress class are shown below.

public class OrganisationAddress


    public string StreetAddress { get; set; }

    public double Latitude { get; set; }

    public double Longitude { get; set; }


As each new OrganisationAddress was created, I called a function that passed the address to the Geocode Service and returned the Lat and Long, which I then saved with the OrganisationAddress.


To get started, add a Service Reference named MyBingMap to your Visual Studio project. The Uri to the GeocodeService is http://dev.virtualearth.net/webservices/v1/geocodeservice/geocodeservice.svc?wsdl

Once you have the service reference, you can create a function that send the street address (consisting of the house number, street name and suburb) and as a GeocodeRequest object to the Bing Maps API. The snipet below shows part of the function that sends in our OrganisationAddress object that contains that StreetAddress property.

    //instantiate a GeocodeRequest and pass in your Bing Maps API key

    MyBingMap.GeocodeRequest map = new MyBingMap.GeocodeRequest();

    map.Credentials = new MyBingMap.Credentials();

    map.Credentials.ApplicationId = "Your API Key";


    //add the address components to the GeocodeRequest.Query

    map.Query = OrganisationAddress.StreetAddress;


    //the Confidence level controls how accurate you want the results

    //if your address is good then Confidence.High should return the location

    //but be warned, if the location can not be found you'll get lat,long of 0,0

    MyBingMap.ConfidenceFilter[] filters = new MyBingMap.ConfidenceFilter[1];

    filters[0] = new MyBingMap.ConfidenceFilter();

    filters[0].MinimumConfidence = MyBingMap.Confidence.High;


    //add the assigned ConfidenceFilter to the Options

    MyBingMap.GeocodeOptions options = new MyBingMap.GeocodeOptions();

    options.Filters = filters;

    map.Options = options;


    //instantiate a GeocodeResponse for the service passing in your GeocodeRequest

    MyBingMap.GeocodeServiceClient geoClient = new MyBingMap.GeocodeServiceClient("BasicHttpBinding_IGeocodeService");

    MyBingMap.GeocodeResponse geocodeResponse = geoClient.Geocode(map);


    //if we get a response back, then save the Lat/Long with our OrganisationAddress

    if (geocodeResponse.Results.Length > 0)


        if (geocodeResponse.Results[0].Locations.Length > 0)


            OrganisationAddress.Latitude = geocodeResponse.Results[0].Locations[0].Latitude;

            OrganisationAddress.Longitude = geocodeResponse.Results[0].Locations[0].Longitude;



If like me you get an error "The remote server returned an unexpected response: (407) Proxy Authentication Required" chances are it's because you are using a proxy server to access the web. In this case you'll need to add a few extra lines of code at the start of the previous code block to setup the credentials of the DefaultWebProxy.

    //if you're accessing the service via a proxy

    //you may need to specify your credentials

    IWebProxy wproxy = WebRequest.DefaultWebProxy;


    wproxy.Credentials = CredentialCache.DefaultNetworkCredentials;

    WebRequest.DefaultWebProxy = wproxy;

Posted: Apr 13 2011, 05:16 by CameronM | Comments (0) RSS comment feed |
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Filed under: ASP.NET