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Beta versions of Esri vector basemaps are now available through ArcGIS Online as vector tile layers. These vector basemaps are accessible as both ready-to-use web maps and as vector tile layers you can add to a map. Additionally, vector basemaps include a variety of styles, some new and some that are similar to existing Esri basemaps. Web maps you create that contain vector tile layers can be used in web applications you configure or build using Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS. As a developer, you can build your own custom applications that use these vector tile layers using the ArcGIS API for JavaScript.

Please consider the following before deciding to use the current release of vector tile layers:
  • Vector tile layers are only supported in applications built with the ArcGIS API for JavaScript. This includes configurable applications, applications built with Web AppBuilder, and custom applications built with the JavaScript application programming interface (API). ArcGIS Runtime SDKs will add support in 2016.
  • Vector tile layers can be displayed in Internet Explorer 11 and in most other current versions of desktop browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, and Safari.
  • Vector tile layers have the best performance on machines with newer hardware.
  • There are issues displaying vector tile layers at a large scale.
  • Maps containing an Esri vector basemap are printed with the Esri Streets basemap. All other maps containing vector tile layers are printed without the vector tile layers.
  • The Esri vector basemaps are currently in the beta stage and are subject to change during this period. You may need to update or replace vector tile layers built using the beta versions of the vector basemaps. The Esri vector basemaps have some known limitations that Esri will address during the beta period, including the following:
    • Labels in languages that display right-to-left scripts, such as Arabic, are not drawn properly.
    • Labels along vector tile boundaries sometimes do not display completely.
    • The topographic map style does not contain some layers (for example, contours, landform labels, and spot elevations) that are included in World Topographic Map.
    • The topographic and streets (with relief) maps, which reference a hillshade base layer, only enable users to zoom in to about a 1:10k scale.
    • The tiles do not include layers for one-way arrows or address labels.
    • Some parks and land polygon features extend into the adjacent ocean areas.
    • River labels along very curvy lines are sometimes too compressed and difficult to read.
    • In some areas, local road labels and shields display, but not the underlying local roads.

Learn more about vector tile layers here.
Julie P. - Technical Product Manager, ArcGIS API for JavaScript
Are you running ArcGIS 10.0 for some of your GIS needs? We know, it’s a great platform, but it’s time to move onward and upward. Over the last five years, Esri has developed greater and more powerful functionalities across all platforms, moving from ArcGIS 10.0 all the way to the upcoming release of ArcGIS 10.4. These upgrades have come with more tools, more efficient processing, and more features that allow you to create and share the data and maps you need. If you haven’t upgraded your applications and geodatabases yet, it’s time to start planning. Starting in January 2016, Esri will no longer provide Standard Support for ArcGIS 10.0. Of course, we at Esri Support are more than happy to help with any upgrade questions you may have, and the experience will only be smoother if you don’t wait until the last minute to upgrade. We can walk you through the workflow from start to finish and are here if you run into any issues. The upcoming deprecation of support includes:
  • ArcGIS for Desktop 10.0
  • ArcGIS Server 10.0
  • ArcSDE 10.0 and enterprise geodatabases in version 10.0
  • ArcIMS
  • ArcInfo Workstation 
For more information, check out the following links:Esri Product Life Cycle Support Policy Deprecation Plan for ArcGIS 10.0 and ArcGIS 10.1ArcIMS Product Life Cycle Support StatusArcInfo Workstation Product Life Cycle Status
Julia L. - Geodata Support Analyst

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