Terms & Conditions

These terms and conditions (Terms) were last updated on 22nd March 2017.

These Terms are the terms on which we supply the services (including but not limited to “3 word addresses”) (Services) listed or available on our website or Apps (together our Applications) to you. You should keep a copy of these Terms for future reference.

These Terms will apply to any contract between us for the supply of Services to you (Contract). Please read these Terms carefully and make sure that you understand them before using any Services from our Applications. Please note that by using any of our Services you agree to be bound by these Terms and any other documents expressly referred to in them.

We may amend these Terms from time to time as set out in clause 10. By making continued use of the Services following such amendments you agree to such updated Terms.

We will endeavour to ensure that all 3 word addresses provided to you continue to function as intended, but this may not always be possible and in limited circumstances the words may need to be changed. We reserve the right to make such changes and shall not be liable to you if any 3 word address previously supplied ceases to work or for any consequences of such changes.

These Terms, and any Contract between us, are only in the English language.

  1. Information about us
    1. We operate the website what3words.com and the what3words branded mobile apps. We are what3words Limited, a company registered in England and Wales under company number 08430008 and with our registered office at Dewmead House, Hinxworth, Baldock, Herts, SG7 5HD.
    2. To contact us, please see our Contact Us page

  2. Definitions
    1. In these terms:
      “Apps”means the what3words branded apps;
      “App Store” means any store for selling apps including, but not limited to, the Apple App Store and Google Play store, and protected by trademarks, as registered in the US and other countries;
      “Intellectual Property” means all intellectual property rights in our site, the Services, the Word List, the Software, our logo, our content,
      “Mobile Device” means a mobile phone or other mobile communication device which is compatible with the App;
      “Software” means the software contained on or used in our applications;
      “Word List” means the word list from which the 3 word address may be taken.
      “3 word address” means the combination of 3 words from the Word List that identifies a 3 metre x 3 metre location.

      3. Use of Our Applications

    1. You are not required to register as a user, though functionality of our applications may differ for registered users and unregistered users. For example, from time to time access to some or all parts of some or all of our Applications may be restricted and only permitted to those users who have registered with us.
    2. If you wish to register, you are responsible for opening an account with us and for making all arrangements necessary for you to have access to our site.
    3. In respect of any user identification code, password or any other piece of information provided as part of our security procedures, you must treat such information as confidential, and you must not disclose it to any third party. We have the right to disable any user identification code or password, whether chosen by you or allocated by us, at any time, if in our opinion you have failed to comply with any of the provisions of these Terms.
    4. Access to our Applications is permitted on a temporary basis, and we reserve the right to withdraw or amend the service we provide on our Applications without notice. We will not be liable if for any reason our any of our Applications are unavailable at any time or for any period.
    5. The material displayed on our Applications is provided without any guarantees, conditions or warranties as to its accuracy. We may at any time alter the content of our Applications without communicating the alteration to you.
    6. Where our Applications contain links to other sites, apps and resources provided by third parties, these links are provided for your information only. We have no control over the contents of those sites or resources, or how they handle any links we provide to them, and we accept no responsibility for them or for any loss or damage that may arise from your use of them.
    7. Our site uses cookies. A cookie is a small file of letters and numbers that is put on your computer if you agree. These cookies allow us to distinguish you from other users of our site, which helps us to provide you with a good experience when you browse our site and also allows us to improve our site. Read more about the individual cookies we use and how to recognise them by clicking here. Using our site will result in cookies being set and by continuing to browse the site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.
  1. Intellectual Property
    1. You acknowledge that all Intellectual Property belongs to us or our licensors, that rights in the Intellectual Property are licensed (not sold) to you, and that you have no rights in, or to, the Intellectual Property other than the right to use the Intellectual Property in accordance with this Contract. You further acknowledge that part of the Intellectual Property may include open-source software as defined by the Open Source Initiative or the Free Software Foundation, or third party software, details of which are cited in the Schedule hereto.
    2. The Intellectual Property shall remain our property, but in consideration of you agreeing to abide by the terms of this Contract, we shall grant you a non-assignable, non-transferable, non-exclusive and revocable licence to use the Intellectual Property for the sole purpose of using the Services as permitted by this Contract and any App Store rules. Such licence is conditional on you having paid all necessary charges to us to use such Services and on you keeping intact all copyright and other proprietary notices. Any copying, re-utilisation, extraction, reproduction or redistribution of the content of the Intellectual Property is expressly prohibited, and this shall include but not be limited to copying or reproduction of the content of the Intellectual Property to any other server or location for further reproduction or redistribution.
    3. You may download a copy of the App onto your device to view, use and display the App on the device to access the Services for your personal and non-commercial purposes only. You are not permitted or licensed to use the App or the Services for any other purpose and nothing in this Contract shall be deemed to grant you any right, title or interest in the App or the Services.
    4. You have no right, and shall not permit any third party to copy, adapt, reverse engineer, decompile, disassemble, modify or reproduce the App or the Services in any way without obtaining our express prior written consent in each instance or to the extent required by law.
    5. You may use our logo, content and trademarks in accordance with the guidelines published from time-to-time on our website. However, if you use our logo, content or trade marks, you do so acknowledging that this use is under license from us, and that your use will not cause any confusion as to the ownership of these things.
    6. Except as expressly stated herein, this agreement does not grant you any rights to, or in, patents, copyrights, database rights, trade names, trademarks (whether registered or unregistered), or any other rights or licences in respect of the Intellectual Property, our site, the App and the material published on it.
    7. We are not aware of any reason why we cannot grant the rights we purport to grant under, or in accordance with this agreement.
    8. Major processes involved in Licensor technology, including but not limited to those used in the Software, are subject to pending patent protection through a range of national and international level filings, including, but not limited to UK Patent Application Numbers GB1307148.5, GB1500104.3 and GB1500105.0 and international patent application numbers PCT/GB2014/051152, PCT/EP2016/050001, PCT/EP2016/050002.
    9. Trade marks of what3words Ltd are registered in various jurisdictions, and include the following::











  1. Photo, Video and Other Content Uploading
    1. By uploading any photograph, video or other content you represent and warrant that:
      1. you are the sole author and owner of the intellectual property rights thereto;
      2. all “moral rights” that you may have in such uploaded content (for example, the right to be named as the creator of your photograph) have been voluntarily waived by you;
      3. you are at least 13 years old; and
      4. photographs/videos have not been previously licensed, published, distributed or publicly used or displayed.
    2. You further agree and warrant that your content does not contain any material that:
      1. disparages any person, us and/or any of our affiliates’ products, competitors, or other companies;
      2. violates or infringes upon the copyrights, trademarks, right of privacy, right of publicity or other intellectual property or proprietary rights of any person or entity;
      3. appears to intentionally duplicate any other submitted content;
      4. is obscene, defamatory, slanderous or libellous or otherwise unlawful;
      5. promotes bigotry, racism, sexism, hatred or harm against any group or individual or promotes discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age;
      6. contains any personally identifiable information, such as personal names or email addresses;
      7. promotes alcohol, illegal drugs, tobacco, firearms/weapons (or the use of any of the foregoing);
      8. promotes any activities that may appear unsafe or dangerous;
      9. contains any nudity, sexually explicit, lewd, offensive, disparaging or other inappropriate content;
      10. is inappropriate or unsuitable to be uploaded to our website or App for any reason whatsoever; or
      11. communicates messages or images inconsistent with the positive images and/or goodwill with which we wish to be associated.
    3. We reserve the right in our absolute discretion to withdraw or suspend the provision of the content upload service to you and remove any photographs, videos or other content you have uploaded without prior warning if you are in our sole opinion in breach of any of the provisions of clauses 5.1 and 5.2. You agree that you will compensate us for any costs, loss, or damage of any kind incurred by us as a result of any breach of these provisions.
    4. By uploading any photograph, video or other content you are agreeing that we (and our group and affiliate companies) may:
      1. display the content on our site, App and any other site or app we may choose at any time, and that when displayed we may include your name as submitted by you in the uploading process;
      2. at any time edit, publish and use your content in any and all media (now or later developed) for promotion, news and information purposes and as part of our goods and services, in particular on our square grid map, without any payment to you; and
      3. display your content publicly on other websites selected by us for viewing by visitors to that website’s public location (we are not responsible for any unauthorised use of your photograph, video or other content by visitors).
      4. We do not guarantee that you will have recourse to edit or delete any photographs, videos or other content that you have uploaded.
      5. You agree to sign any necessary documentation or take any action that may reasonably be required for us and our group and affiliate companies to make use of the rights you grant above.
  1. Further provisions relating to the Use of the Apps
    1. You may only cancel a contract to use the Apps to the extent permitted by the relevant App Stores’ terms and conditions.
    2. We give no warranty for the quality or reliability of the Services provided by any App Store.
    3. We shall not be liable to you for any loss of connection to the internet from your Mobile Device or malfunction or failure of the in-built GPS in your Mobile Device which prevents you accessing or making full use of the Apps.
  2. Information for developers
    The what3words API has its own licence agreement which developers must subscribe to in order to use the API service. Please sign-up on the site to use the API. 
  3. 3 word addresses
    1. The provision of the service of a 3 word address for a location is provided free of charge but subject to these Terms.
    2. We shall not be liable to you for any failure, however caused, to find the 3 word address for any location, for any consequence of the failure to find the 3 word address, for any failure to find the location to which the 3 word address applies or for any consequence of the failure to find such location.
    3. While we have made all reasonable efforts to remove potentially offensive words from the Word List, we shall not be liable to you for any words, word combinations or word orders which may be offensive, upsetting or annoying in any way or for any reason to you, to anyone receiving those words for any purpose (for example, in communicating the location described by the words in question) or to anyone or anything associated with the location described by the 3 word address. The words are assigned to locations entirely algorithmically, and you accept that any meaning of any individual word or combination of words is not relevant to the location to which it may refer.
  4. How we use your personal information
    We only use your personal information in accordance with our Privacy Policy. For details, please see our Privacy Policy. Please take the time to read this, as it includes important terms which apply to you.
  5. Our right to vary these terms
    1. We may amend these Terms at any time for legal, regulatory or security reasons or any other reason. Any such changes to these Terms will be announced on the front page of our website and via the App. By making any subsequent use of the Services following such announcement, you agree to such updated Terms.
    2. You are expected to check this page from time to time to take notice of any changes we have made, as they are binding on you.
    3. Every time you use Services from us, the Terms in force at that time will apply to the Contract between you and us.
  1. Our liability to you
    1. If we fail to comply with these Terms, we shall only be liable for losses which are a reasonably foreseeable consequence of such a breach up to a maximum of £500. Losses are foreseeable if they were an obvious consequence of our breach or if they were contemplated by you and us at the time we entered into the Contract.
    2. If you fail to comply with these Terms, we are not liable for any loss or damage you may suffer as a result.
    3. Unless otherwise agreed in writing, we only supply the Services for domestic, private and commercial use. You agree not to use the Services for any re-sale purposes. Where the Services are used for commercial or business use, we have no liability to you for any loss of profit, loss of business, business interruption, or loss of business opportunity.
    4. Where we supply to you latitude/longitude coordinates for a location as part of our Services, we shall not be liable to you for any inaccuracies in the coordinates supplied nor for any consequence, however arising, of the provision of inaccurate coordinates.
  1. Events outside our control
    1. We will not be liable or responsible for any failure to perform, or delay in performance of, any of our obligations under a Contract that is caused by an Event Outside Our Control. An Event Outside Our Control is defined below in clause 15.2.
    2. An Event Outside Our Control means any act or event beyond our reasonable control, including without limitation accident to or breakdown of delivery vehicle, strikes, lock-outs or other industrial action by third parties, civil commotion, riot, invasion, terrorist attack or threat of terrorist attack, war (whether declared or not) or threat or preparation for war, fire, explosion, storm, flood, earthquake, subsidence, epidemic or other natural disaster, or failure of public or private telecommunications networks or impossibility of the use of railways, shipping, aircraft, motor transport or other means of public or private transport.
  2. Communications between us
    1. When we refer, in these Terms, to “in writing”, this will include e-mail.
    2. If you wish to contact us in writing, or if any clause in these Terms requires you to give us notice in writing, you can send this to us by e-mail to support@what3words.com. We will confirm receipt of this by contacting you in writing, normally by e-mail.
    3. If we have to contact you or give you notice in writing, we will do so by e-mail to the e-mail address you provide to us when you register.
    4. We will contact you occasionally with news and updates. If you wish to unsubscribe you may do so at any time.

  3. Other terms of use
    1. Please note that by using our Applications you are agreeing to be bound by the terms of use of the third parties listed below. Please read the following terms of use carefully and make sure that you understand them before using any Services from our Applications.
    2. Google: https://www.google.com/intl/en/policies/terms/
  1. Other important terms
    1. We may transfer our rights and obligations under a Contract to another organisation, but this will not affect your rights or our obligations under these Terms.
    2. You may only transfer your rights or your obligations under these Terms to another person if we agree in writing.
    3. This contract is between you and us. No other person shall have any rights to enforce any of its terms, whether under the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties Act) 1999 or otherwise and we and you will not need their consent to cancel or make any changes to these Terms.
    4. Each of the paragraphs of these Terms operates separately. If any court or relevant authority decides that any of them are unlawful or unenforceable, the remaining paragraphs will remain in full force and effect.
    5. If we fail to insist that you perform any of your obligations under these Terms, or if we do not enforce our rights against you, or if we delay in doing so, that will not mean that we have waived our rights against you and will not mean that you do not have to comply with those obligations. If we do waive a default by you, we will only do so in writing, and that will not mean that we will automatically waive any later default by you.
    6. These Terms are governed by English law. This means a Contract for the purchase of products through our site and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with it will be governed by English law. You and we both agree to that the courts of England and Wales will have non-exclusive jurisdiction.

The Schedule

Citation of Third Party Software and Data

The Intellectual Property includes data taken from the following:-

Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN)/Columbia University, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), The World Bank, and Centro Internacional de Agricultura Tropical (CIAT). 2011. Global Rural-Urban Mapping Project, Version 1 (GRUMPv1): Settlement Points. Palisades,

NY: NASA Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC)

Center for International Earth Science Information Netwrotk (CIESIN)/Columbia University, and Centro International de Agricultura Tropical (CIAT). 2005. Gridded Population of the World, Version 3 (GPWv3):

National Administrative Boundaries. Palisades. NY: NASA Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC)

Word frequency data – Mark Davies, Professor at Brigham Young University

Word frequency data from monolingual corpora distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Geographical place names and locations from the GeoNames geographical database, distributed at geonames.org under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Word frequency data distributed with an in-perpetuity licence from Sketch Engine

Google Maps APIs

what3words powers

Find out how to use what3words in your business: