There is not a hard-coded limit to the number of zones you can include in a SonicMaps project. However, if you are planning to use the SonicMaps Player in offline mode, there is a limit to the amount of data you can store in your browser’s Cache Storage. We recommend splitting very large projects into smaller ones that you can save and edit independently. This will improve the performance of the Editor and Player apps and the final user experience.
You should try not to overlap more than 3 or 4 sound areas at a single location. Having a larger number of overlapping sounds may not pose a problem when working on a desktop or laptop machine with enough resources, but it might cause glitches (e.g. clicking noises, etc.) when trying to playback those audio files simultaneously on a lower-end mobile device with limited RAM memory and CPU power. Sometimes, a possible solution is to "downmix" some materials into a single audio file so the audio engine needs to play fewer simultaneous sounds.
We recommend you always test your projects on-site using multiple different devices (including some older model) to ensure that all your visitors will have a satisfactory experience.
Currently, the maximum upload size for a single audio file is 300 MB. Also, if you are targeting iOS devices, audio files must be no longer than 10 minutes in duration; if that is the case, we recommend splitting large files into several smaller ones.
All major audio file formats are accepted (MP3, WAV, AIFF, etc). Once uploaded, audio files are internally converted to the OPUS codec format which delivers nearly transparent sound with very low bandwidth usage. This format also ensures compatibility with most browsers and platforms. Therefore, our recommendation is to upload uncompressed files with the best possible audio quality that can be preserved after conversion.
The reason why some zones are not visible while playing a sound map is because those areas might be using the conditional playback feature ("Enable if.... has ended") so they will only become active and visible once the audio zone selected in this property has finished playing. This feature can be useful to ensure your audience experiences your sound map following a particular order/sequence.
In addition, content zones also include an "invisible" property which, when enabled, hides the corresponding area while listening in the SonicMaps Player. However, unlike the conditional playback property, an invisible zone will still be active and sounds will be triggered when you enter it. Invisible zones are shown in the Editor using a semi-transparent color so you can always keep track of them while testing. These are normally used in treasure hunt games or whenever you want to focus the user's attention on other visible zones while still playing sounds in the background without a visual presence.
There are two options, depending on whether the project is to be experienced on-site (GPS enabled) or not:
The first option, when GPS tracking is required, is to invite your visitors to use the SonicMaps Player where your project will be listed after being approved by our review team. You can also obtain a direct link to your work from the SonicMaps Editor ("My projects" window) to further facilitate access to it. When clicking on this link, the user's browser will instantly open the SonicMaps Player and will automatically focus on your published project ready to start listening.
A second option is to embed your sound map into a website so it can be navigated by simply dragging a human icon on the map (i.e. simulated walk mode). Embedding codes can also be obtained from the SonicMaps Editor.
As a Progressive Web App, the SonicMaps Player runs in any modern browser. The first time you visit the Player, some browsers will prompt you to install the app as an icon on your device's home screen so it can be used like any other native app, including full-screen visualisation and off-line capabilities. Currently, recommended browsers are Chrome on Android and Safari on iOS, both providing a nearly identical experience. Firefox or Edge should also operate without issues.
An internet connection is required to fetch a project’s data from the SonicMaps servers before it can be experienced by a user. However, once a project is loaded in the SonicMaps Player, it is possible to download all the project's data—including audio files and relevant map tiles—to the browser’s Cache Storage so it can later be experienced without an internet connection. Even if a cellular internet connection is available, you might still want to pre-download your project while on WIFI to avoid data charges and reduce loading times.
Once a project is downloaded all project data will remain in the browser cache storage for at least two weeks unless you manually clear the browser history/cache. Data is very rarely automatically cleared by the browser. However, Safari will automatically purge cache assets after 7 days for web apps that have not been added to the home screen, so downloaded projects will no longer be available.
The easiest way to share a project is to use the "Share" button located at the bottom right corner of the SonicMaps Player after a project has been loaded. This method generates a unique URL for the project that can be sent via email or social media.
When you first open the SonicMaps Player app you should see a pop-up window asking for permission to use your precise location. Once you accept and a GPS fix is obtained, your location should be displayed on the map as a small blue circle. If that is not the case, please make sure GPS and Location Services are enabled and your browser has permission to use this service. On some operating systems (e.g. iOS) permissions are now granted on a “per app” basis instead of being a global setting. Please check this troubleshooting guide for further information.
The GPS signal is independent from a cellphone tower signal, so your position should be accurate even if a cellular network is not available. Accuracy will mostly depend on number of satellites available and the proximity of large structures (buildings, etc.)
SonicMaps uses Location Services in your device to retrieve your location, which internally uses different methods to improve accuracy depending on the device and OS. These methods include using databases of cellular or WiFi networks near you, but the main source of accuracy is GPS. In optimal conditions a consumer-grade GPS sensor will generally provide between 2 and 5 meters horizontal precision. Take into account this limitation when designing your project by providing enough "padding" in your sound areas and avoid drawing areas which are too small.
If using an iPad to run SonicMaps, please note that a built-in GPS chip is only found in Apple's Wi-Fi + Cellular iPad models.
To upgrade your SonicMaps account please contact email@example.com. We will activate your new plan within the next 24 hours. Your account details will remain the same.
Your plan's renewal date can be found in the "My Account" section of the SonicMaps Editor. You will also find a button to access the customer portal where you may request the cancellation of an active subscription at any time before the renewal date. After cancelling, your plan will expire at the end of the current billing cycle and your audio tours will no longer be listed in the SonicMaps Player. However, we will still maintain your data for 3 months in case you decide to come back. During this 3-month period you can always request a copy of your data via email.