Bing Maps key changes in b21

Do you use Bing maps imagery in Cesium? If you’re not sure, you probably do, so keep reading. We made some changes to the way Cesium uses Bing Maps imagery in release b21.

Here’s the short version:

Please create a Bing Maps key for your application by visiting Bing Maps keys are free in many situations, including public, commercial web sites with reasonable amounts of traffic, and free trials are available for non-free uses. Once you have your key, supply it to Cesium by executing code like the following, prior to creating the CesiumWidget, Viewer, or BingMapsImageryProvider:

Cesium.BingMapsApi.defaultKey = ‘the key generated by’;

Your application will continue to run and use Bing Maps imagery successfully even if you do not do this, but:

  • Cesium will print a warning to the console reminding you to supply your own Bing Maps key.
  • It is a violation of our license terms with Microsoft to use the built-in key in a non-public website.
  • The key supplied with Cesium may be disabled at any time, at which point your application will stop working.
    If you’re staying on an older release of Cesium, prior to b21, you should create and supply a key as well. There will be no warning to the console in those versions, but the key may still be disabled in the future. In those older versions, you’ll need to supply it to the BingMapsImageryProvider directly rather than setting BingMapsApi.defaultKey as above. Please post here if you need help with older versions.

Here’s the background information, if you’re interested:

Please keep in mind that Cesium in no way requires Bing Maps imagery. You’re free to use OpenStreetMap, an ArcGIS server (including Esri’s nice public ones), a WMS server, or any number of other sources for the imagery in your application.

We love Bing Maps imagery; that’s why it is the default in Cesium. It’s high-resolution, easy to license for use in our products, and looks great in Cesium. In fact, AGI, the company that has funded the majority of Cesium development so far, loves Bing Maps imagery so much that they make it available to all users of their commercial products. They originally thought that they could extend this to Cesium as well, as the price “per use” is quite reasonable.

As Cesium usage has increased, however, AGI became concerned that an extremely popular Cesium application would cause it to exceed its usage limits. At that point, the price per usage becomes a lot higher, and has the potential to cost AGI quite a lot of money. As a result, AGI can no longer supply their enterprise key for use by the wider Cesium community. Instead, we (AGI and the Cesium developers) ask that Cesium users form their own agreement for Bing Maps usage by creating a key at We’re not the first to go through this process; Esri had a similar situation with ArcMap earlier this year.

We’re sorry for the inconvenience, but we think you’ll find the process to be easy and the terms to be reasonable for most uses.

If you have any questions, please let me know!




I just installed B21 and am playing with Sandcastle. Is there a single place where I can redefine the BingMapsApi key with my own?



Hi Cam,

Yes, you can open BingMapsApi.js and change the line:

BingMapsApi.defaultKey = undefined;


BingMapsApi.defaultKey = ‘your key’;

That should do the trick.