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Strava to shutter 3D mapping platform Fatmap 20 months after acquisition
June 29, 2024

Strava to shutter 3D mapping platform Fatmap 20 months after acquisition

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Activity tracking platform and community Strava is shutting down Fatmap, the Europe-based 3D mapping platform it had acquired last January.

In an email sent to users this week, accompanied by an online support page, Fatmap said that its website and app will be retired from October 1, 2024, and users will get an option to transfer their Fatmap routes to Strava until then.

While the company said it will ‘bring Fatmap’s 3D mapping and other features to Strava,’ digging into the details reveals that much will be left out in the move.

‘Google Maps for the outdoors’

At its core, Fatmap is akin to Google Maps for the great outdoors: It serves a high-resolution 3D map platform with detailed routes for skiers, hikers, bikers, and anyone else. The company was founded in the U.K. back in 2013, though its core team was spread through hubs in Europe, including Germany and Lithuania.

It isn’t surprising to see Strava pulling the plug on Fatmap. Strava had said at the time of the deal that while the companies’ products would remain separate initially, it would integrate them more closely and decide whether Fatmap would live on as a standalone product.

Strava has already introduced some of Fatmap’s features, including a premium feature called Flyover that provides an aerial, 3D video recap of your route.

The Flyover feature in action. Image Credits: Strava

However, maintaining two separate products is more resource intensive than maintaining one. And with a new CEO joining in January, Strava has been doubling down on making its core product stickier and addressing key concerns raised by the community, such as cheating on leaderboards and the lack of dark mode.

Strava has stressed that it will be porting many of Fatmap’s features over to its own app as part of its premium subscription, but as with such things, the devil is very much in the details.

Strava says it’s incorporating Fatmap’s 3D satellite maps, in addition to the normal 3D maps and 3D images that it has already moved over. But while users will be able to move their routes over to Strava, this will only include elements such as route title, description and the ‘line’ marking the route.

Related data such as assigned grades can’t be moved over, which presumably will make it difficult to assess a hill’s steepness. Additionally, Fatmap users won’t be able to transfer their photos over, though they will be able to download this data.

Other Fatmap features such as adventures, guidebooks and waypoints can’t be transferred to Strava, and users will be given the option to download this data instead using Fatmap’s data export tool.

Fatmap’s data export tool. Image Credits: Fatmap

Such omissions will render Fatmap useless for those who use it to navigate remote terrain, or for those trying to figure out whether to attempt a particular ski slope.

Fatmap says it will delete users’ data after October 1 if they haven’t taken any actions on their account before that date. Users can take matters into their own hands now and manually delete their data.

The full text of Fatmap’s email notification reads:


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