Working with Live Updates / Real Time Data in MapsIndoors for iOS

Posted on September 1, 2020

In this tutorial you will learn to work with Live Updates / real-time data in MapsIndoors. It is recommended that you read the Live Data Introduction before continuing.

We will create a view controller displaying a map that shows some dynamic changes that are initiated from Live Data sources known by MapsIndoors. If you do not have a Live Data integration in place for your MapsIndoors project, you can use API key 2ae7d137162642618b5ce555 for demo and test purposes. The test data are of the Occupancy Domain Type and the Position Domain Type.

Create a class LiveDataController that inherits from UIViewController.

class LiveDataController: UIViewController {

Add buttons for toggling subscriptions, one button for Live Position Updates and one for Live Occupancy Updates.

let positionButton = UIButton.init()
let occupancyButton = UIButton.init()

Add a GMSMapView and a MPMapControl to the class.

var map: GMSMapView? = nil
var mapControl: MPMapControl? = nil

Add a MPLiveDataManager to the class, being the shared instance. The property is declared lazy in order to only instantiate the shared instance once it is needed.

lazy var liveManager = MPLiveDataManager.sharedInstance()

Add a method setupSubscriptionButtons() setting up buttons that enables/disables the subscriptions.

fileprivate func setupSubscriptionButtons() {
    positionButton.setTitle("See Live Positions", for: .normal)
    positionButton.setTitle("Tracking Live Positions", for: .selected)
    positionButton.addTarget(self, action: #selector(togglePosition), for: .touchUpInside)
    positionButton.backgroundColor =

    occupancyButton.setTitle("See Live Occupancy", for: .normal)
    occupancyButton.setTitle("Showing Live Occupancy", for: .selected)
    occupancyButton.addTarget(self, action: #selector(toggleOccupancy), for: .touchUpInside)
    occupancyButton.backgroundColor =

Add a method toggleSubscription() that does the actual toggling of a subscription for a button based on the buttons isSelected flag. Swap current selected state for button. If the flag is true and the button is selected, call the Live Data Manager’s subscribe() method with the given Topic Criteria. We will also call a startFlash()method that should make the button flash. More on this later. If the flag is false and the button is not selected, call the Live Data Manager’s unsubscribe() method with the given Topic Criteria. Similarly we will call a stopFlash()method that should stop the button flash.

fileprivate func toggleSubscription(_ button: UIButton, _ topic: MPLiveTopicCriteria) {
    button.isSelected = !button.isSelected
    if button.isSelected {
    } else {

Define an objective-c method togglePosition() that will receive events from your positionButton. In this method create a position Topic Criteria and call togglePosition with the button and the Topic Criteria.

@objc func togglePosition(button:UIButton) {
    let topic = MPLiveTopicCriteria.domainType(MPLiveDomainType.position)
    toggleSubscription(button, topic)

Define an objective-c method toggleOccupancy() that will receive events from your occupancyButton. In this method create a occupancy Topic Criteria and call togglePosition with the button and the Topic Criteria.

@objc func toggleOccupancy(button:UIButton) {
    let topic = MPLiveTopicCriteria.domainType(MPLiveDomainType.occupancy)
    toggleSubscription(button, topic)

Inside viewDidLoad(), initialise your instance of GMSMapView and MPMapControl. Set the delegate to be able to get notified about Live Updates for the map. = GMSMapView.init(frame:
self.mapControl = MPMapControl.init(map:!)
self.mapControl?.delegate = self as MPMapControlDelegate

Inside viewDidLoad(), also request a Building and go to this Building on the map.

let q = MPQuery.init()
let f = MPFilter.init()
q.query = "Building"

MPLocationService.sharedInstance().getLocationsUsing(q, filter: f) { (locations, error) in
    if let loc = locations?.first {
        self.mapControl?.go(to: loc)

Inside viewDidLoad() method, call setupSubscriptionButtons() arrange the map view and the buttons in stackviews.

let buttonStackView = UIStackView.init(arrangedSubviews: [positionButton, occupancyButton])
buttonStackView.axis = .horizontal
buttonStackView.distribution = .fillEqually
let stackView = UIStackView.init(arrangedSubviews: [map!, buttonStackView])
stackView.axis = .vertical
view = stackView

Optionally, when you leave this controller, unsubscribe all Live Update Topics.

override func viewDidDisappear(_ animated: Bool) {

Create an extension for LiveDataController to make it adopt the MPMapControlDelegate protocol.

extension LiveDataController : MPMapControlDelegate {

In the LiveDataController extension, add the method handleLiveUpdate() that handles a Live Update for a MPLocation. This method should only handle the occupancy Domain Type, so the first thing is to check for an occupied value in the occupancy Domain Type. After this verification, do the following:

  1. If occupied == "True" create the “closed” image, else create the “open” image.
  2. Setup a Location Display Rule with that image.
  3. Check for a nrOfPeoplevalue in the same Domain Type.
  4. If present use the value in the label for the Location.
  5. Assign the new Display Rule to the Location through MPMapControl.
private func handleLiveUpdate(_ forLocation: MPLocation) {
    let domainType = MPLiveDomainType.occupancy
    if let occupied = loc.getLiveValue(forKey:"occupied", domainType: domainType) {
        var img:UIImage?
        if occupied == "True" {
            img = UIImage.init(named: "closed.png")
        } else {
            img = UIImage.init(named: "open.png")
        let dr = MPLocationDisplayRule.init(name: domainType, andIcon: img, andZoomLevelOn: 15)!
        dr.iconSize = CGSize.init(width: 10, height: 10)

        if let peopleCount = loc.getLiveValue(forKey:"nrOfPeople", domainType: domainType) {
            dr.label = peopleCount
            dr.showLabel = true
        } else {
            dr.showLabel = false
        self.mapControl?.setDisplayRule(dr, for: loc)

In the LiveDataController extension, add the method willUpdateLocations(). This is the actual delegate method that recieves all MPLocation objects that was updated on the map. Iterate through these locations and skip the ones that have the position Domain Type. Call the handleLiveUpdate() method for all others.

func willUpdateLocationsOnMap(locations: [MPLocation]) {
    for loc in locations {
        let positionUpdate = loc.getLiveUpdate(forDomainType: MPLiveDomainType.position)
        if positionUpdate == nil {

Earlier we called some non-existing methods, startFlash() and stopFlash() on a UIButton. We will create these methods now. Create an extension for UIButton.

extension UIButton {

In the UIButton extension, add the method startFlash() that creates and adds an animation layer that manipulates with the opacity of the button over time.

func startFlash() {
    let flash = CABasicAnimation(keyPath: "opacity")
    flash.duration = 0.5
    flash.fromValue = 1
    flash.toValue = 0.5
    flash.timingFunction = CAMediaTimingFunction(name: kCAMediaTimingFunctionEaseInEaseOut)
    flash.autoreverses = true
    flash.repeatCount = .greatestFiniteMagnitude
    layer.add(flash, forKey: "flash")

In the UIButton extension, add the method stopFlash() that removes the above layer again.

func stopFlash() {
    layer.removeAnimation(forKey: "flash")

This completes the tutorial on Live Data. See the sample in LiveDataController.swift.