How To: Register Google Maps API Key

Google offers many of its services up to a certain limit for free.

For example, it is also possible to access the Google Maps functionality. This is useful, for example, for cases such as those described in the article MagicMirror - Display Current Traffic Overview.

Here you can have a local traffic overview displayed on your own MagicMirror and thus tomorrow when brushing your teeth see how much is going on on the roads in the area around you.

But to access this service you need an API key. How you get this and what you have to do is described in the following article.

Hints for our lovely english readers: Basically, many of the articles on are translations from the original german articles. Therefore, it may happen here and there that some illustrations are not available in english and that some translations are weird/strange/full of mistakes or generally totaly wrong. So if you find some obvious (or also not obvious) mistakes don't hesitate to leave us a hint about that in the comment section. 
Also please don't get confused, that instead of a "dot" often a "comma" is used as decimal separator. 🙂

Open the page of the Maps Platform

To start registering your own API key, you must first go to the Google Maps Platform website. You can find it at:

First log in to the website. For this you need a google account. Possibly. you have to create this first. In order to get to the login field, you have to click on "Login"(In Picture: "Anmelden") on the top right.
This will redirect you to the login form, which will allow you to log in.
After a successful login you will be redirected to the previous start page.

Now you have to go to the following website:

This link takes you directly to the page of the Google Maps Platform where you can register your own API key.
Here you can find all sorts of information about the individual functions and possibilities of Google Maps Services. If you want to start registering the API key directly, you can just scroll down until you get to the shown "GET STARTED" button. Click on it.
On the following page you can now define which service(s) you want to use. There are three different "sources of information": Maps, Routes and Places. As the names already suggest, you can access maps information with "Maps", route information with "Routes" and location information with "Places". For normal map applications - like the MagicMirror project - we only need the "Maps" function. So mark it and click on “Next”.
For a better overview, you can now assign the later created API key to a project.
Enter a unique name in the text input field. So you can create your own API key for each project.
After a click on “Next” you will …
… be forwarded to the billing page.

At this point you do not need to get scared. As promised, this service is free. You will not be charged any hidden costs. When entering the payment details, it's just about making sure you're not a robot/bot.

On the next page you can also read again "Black on White", that there are no hidden costs waiting for you. Only if you, for example, to be able to use more (not free) features, agree to additional costs real money gets debited.
Now go through the individual steps and fill in the form...
… with your payment data.
Then you click on the button "Start free trial" (In Picture: "Start free trial") to confirm the data to get the Google Maps API key.
Click on “Next” (In Picture: “Next”) in the now opening window …
… and after a short wait you will …
… get displayed your Google Maps API key. You can now use this to access some Google Maps services for free.

Have fun with the project

I hope everything worked as described. If not or you have any other questions or suggestions, please let me know in the comments. Also, ideas for new projects are always welcome. 🙂

P.S. Many of these projects - especially the hardware projects - cost a lot of time and money. Of course I do this because I enjoy it, but if you appreciate that I share this information with you, I would be happy about a small donation to the coffee box. 🙂

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