Home Move over Android and iOS, these guys got Google Maps running on a Commodore 64

Move over Android and iOS, these guys got Google Maps running on a Commodore 64

Ah, the Commodore 64. A computer from a more innocent time when games were games and typing in a 1,000-line listing from a magazine wouldn’t be seen as absolute insanity.

Let’s start off with a history lesson. The C64 was released in August 1982. Google Maps was first launched in February 2005, almost a quarter of a century later. Now imagine you were somebody who thought – ‘I wonder if I can get Google Maps to work on my Commodore 64’

Well fear not because that is what some intrepid C64 fans set out to do, and as you can see in the video, you too could technically do it if you have a working C64 lying around (I do as it happens but that speaks volumes about me perhaps.

Using a WiC64 module which, using some modern–day magic, can get your Commodore 64 hooked up to the internet via wifi and then making a C64 kernel with the WiC64 software on it, your aging breadbin can then access a host of online services through the included software that acts as a portal to several online internet services including Google Maps and Google Street View.

Now I come from a pre-internet era of BBSs and modems as well so this is all familiar stuff to me but even so, connecting hardware that pre-dates the internet to the internet is not a straightforward task.

Now obviously, with the graphics capabilities of old 8-bit computers being a fraction less capable than the 4090 you may be currently rocking, there is only so much the machine can do. You won’t be using this to plan any routes but as a project, it’s a pretty fun one.

You can see the video of everything in action and skip through to around the 24-minute mark for Google Maps with Street View soon after.

The ability of these old machines to perform modern tasks (albeit to an ancient standard) never ceases to amaze and the guys who were developing the code and the chips back in the late 1970s could never have dreamed what they would ultimately be capable of.

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Paul McNally
Gaming Editor

Paul McNally has been around consoles and computers since his parents bought him a Mattel Intellivision in 1980. He has been a prominent games journalist since the 1990s, spending over a decade as editor of popular print-based video games and computer magazines, including a market-leading PlayStation title published by IDG Media. Having spent time as Head of Communications at a professional sports club and working for high-profile charities such as the National Literacy Trust, he returned as Managing Editor in charge of large US-based technology websites in 2020. Paul has written high-end gaming content for GamePro, Official Australian PlayStation Magazine,…

Get the biggest tech headlines of the day delivered to your inbox

    By signing up, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe anytime.

    Tech News

    Explore the latest in tech with our Tech News. We cut through the noise for concise, relevant updates, keeping you informed about the rapidly evolving tech landscape with curated content that separates signal from noise.

    In-Depth Tech Stories

    Explore tech impact in In-Depth Stories. Narrative data journalism offers comprehensive analyses, revealing stories behind data. Understand industry trends for a deeper perspective on tech's intricate relationships with society.

    Expert Reviews

    Empower decisions with Expert Reviews, merging industry expertise and insightful analysis. Delve into tech intricacies, get the best deals, and stay ahead with our trustworthy guide to navigating the ever-changing tech market.