How to distribute app without api key

I have a simple app I want to share with friends. The app calls for directions that get displayed on the map. The code sends my api key on each request that presumably keeps ‘score’ of the number of calls for directions. If I share the code then that score may reach the limit very quickly. How do developers publish apps with this functionality without exhausting their quotas?

My apologies if this is a very basic question. I’m at the, ‘I don’t even know what I don’t know’ stage of the learning cycle.

Hi @Ross_Munro,

you have 3 options:

  1. implement a feature where users can provide their own API key (link to sign up for free key).
    → each user brings his own quota for the app.

  2. host your own openrouteservice instance. Depending on the area you want the app to run (e.g. city level) it might be worth setting up your own small backend where you can send unlimited requests to, or manage the quota yourself.

  3. In case this is a free application that everyone can use, we can take a look at it and then decide if we give you increased quota for your key, so you won’t hit the limit that easily. If it’s only something you use internally (friends, family) or commercially in any way, we can’t do that and you have to go with 1 or 2.

Of course you can always just go with the free quota for now and decide when it actually comes to that point.

Best regards

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Thanks for replying. Currently it’s only me and 2 others so it hardly matters yet. But the (albeit tiny) feedback I’ve been getting is that the app is huge fun. Briefly, I hit a ‘Go’ button and the app finds a random destination (default) 500 meters away, and openroute joins the dots. That is the beginning of my evening walk. The fun idea behind it is that of Zen navigation: You may never get to where you want to go, but you always end up where you need to be. It’s often quite surprising what you find at each destination, and you get to explore your neighbourhood as you get there. I am thinking of making it free and am daily inspired by other addon benefits. I am looking into if/how I can update openMaps during each walk, for example, because I often find things that need editing on the map. I’m also exploring open ways for users to share their experiences etc. If it gets to that stage then, I’ll get back to you about the possibility of you supporting it as a free app. Otherwise I think I’m happy to just keep it among friends and family. Thanks again for a great answer.