Sunday, April 7, 2013

Google Mapping: To Cluster or Not to Cluster

I've been making progress with the Android version of the WineCompass mobile application and have implemented the major search features - by location, zip code, and state. Each establishment is display on a Google map with its marker corresponding to its category - winery, brewery, and distillery.  The last major decision I need to make is how to show markers for populous states such as California, Oregon, and Washington.  Should I just map each location as in Figure 1? Or is that too busy and instead, should I implement clusters, where clicking on a particularly cluster zooms the mapping coordinates to that location? See Figure 2. Once again I would appreciate your thoughts.

Figure 1.
Figure 2.

Update: Based on a wise suggestion, I am creating a preference so that a user can select which option they prefer, cluster or marker:

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