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Insights & Trends 3 min read

Thanks to Yahoo! JAPAN Maps, shopping in Shibuya just got easier

A street view of the world-famous intersection of Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan

Traveling through Tokyo’s sprawling concrete jungle can be stressful — unless you’re equipped with the most up-to-date indoor maps.

With a horizon dominated by endless skyscrapers rubbing steel-and-glass shoulders with futuristic neon-wrapped buildings, it’s no wonder that the average Tokyoite’s navigation needs are more demanding than most. 

Home to a staggering population of 37.4 million people, the urban area of Tokyo, Japan, is by far the world’s largest metropolis. 

Local amenities such as restaurants and shops are often concentrated in and around train and subway stations. These transit hubs are often highly complex, but most mapping apps can only offer facility information on a basic footprint level.

This isn’t much help when a user is trying to locate a specific store, take out cash at an ATM or find their way to the nearest restroom. 

Facing steep competition and a steady decline in downloads, Yahoo! JAPAN Maps saw an opportunity to develop a new, high-quality version of their navigation app that would offer accurate and reliable visibility of indoor spaces — such as shopping malls – supported by enhanced location services. 

Taking them to the next level required investment in the latest location technology. After comparing products from different companies, it was clear that HERE Indoor Map could not be matched on freshness, customizability and Japanese language support.

Yahoo MAP! Screenshot 2023 C

Yahoo! JAPAN Maps' easy interface guides users through complex indoor venues such as mega-shopping mall LaLaport Tokyo Bay (shown on left) and the commercial hub around Shibuya — Japan’s world-famous fashion epicenter (shown on right).


With HERE, opening Yahoo! JAPAN Maps on your smartphone will reveal a seamless navigation experience. Each shopping mall floor is clear and easy to read. For example, all stores are shaded in pink, restaurants are colored orange and additional icons for escalators, elevators, ATMs and toilets are highlighted accordingly. As you are guided through the space, you can quickly switch floors with a simple tap of your screen. 

Tokyo’s shopping centers are just as fast-paced inside as the roads that surround them — powered by HERE Indoor Map, Yahoo! JAPAN Maps' floor plans are updated monthly so any renovations or new store launches are automatically captured and made visible.

Yahoo! JAPAN Maps can also guide commuters traveling from one train line to another via more direct indoor routes. Compared with other map apps that can only lead you along street level, this is a massive and welcome time-saver.

"Yahoo! JAPAN Maps is leveraging the superior indoor map data of HERE Technologies to enhance user experience. We are committed to striving for a better user experience through this partnership," said LY Corporation Map Product Owner Kenichi Deguchi.

Yahoo! JAPAN Maps is leveraging the superior indoor map data of HERE Technologies to enhance user experience. We are committed to striving for a better user experience through this partnership.

Kenichi Deguchi

LY Corporation Map Product Owner

Recent additions to the app include the mega-shopping mall LaLaport Tokyo Bay. And as of last year, six commercial hubs around Shibuya — Japan’s world-famous fashion epicenter — are now available. 

Based on an uptick of daily active users, Tokyoites are voting in favor of Yahoo! JAPAN Maps with each footstep. And thanks to their established partnerships with major players in the real estate, commercial and transportation sectors, the company is looking forward to expanding its offering across Japan. 

Louis Boroditsky

Louis Boroditsky

Managing Editor, HERE360

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