Open Location Code in Flutter

A geocode system for identifying an area anywhere on the Earth

Constantin Stan
Flutter Community


Googleplex, Google's global headquarter, located on a map using a Plus Code. Map data ©2020 Google

The Open Location Code (OLC) is a geocoding system developed by Google that was released in October 2014. Location codes created by the OLC system are referred to as Plus Codes. These codes are supported by Google Maps search since August 2015.

Plus Codes are designed to be used like street addresses and can be useful in places where there is no formal system to identify buildings, such as street names, house numbers, and postcodes.

In the following examples, we'll use Google's global headquarters location.

The latitude and longitude for their headquarters are 37.422062, -122.08406.

The mail address is 1600 Amphitheatre Pkwy, Mountain View, CA 94043, USA.

The full Plus Code for the same address is 849VCWC8+R9, and the short Plus Code is CWC8+R9, Mountain View.

As you can see, the OLC system helps us encode a location into a form that is easier to use and remember. It can be compared with a telephone number when it comes to its length, but it can even shorter if we strip the first 4 characters from a full-length Plus Code and add a locality.