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Get Started

The first thing to do is to download and install the Kinsmap app. There is a download link on the HOME page. Kinsmap comes with an example family tree containing European royal families with ancestors that is immediately available. Bear in mind that after the first opening of a new family tree all birth places will be located through a Google service, so it will take some time until the location information is available

Find your GEDCOM file

In order to view your own pedigree you need to get hold of its GEDCOM file. GEDCOM is a standard text file format for the exchange of genealogical data between different genealogy software. GEDCOM files of versions 5.5 and 5.5.1 are supported. There are different ways to get a GEDCOM file onto your device:

Select your family tree

Click for MyHeritage instructions

In case you are using MyHeritage, follow this procedure to get your GEDCOM file:

  • Log in to MyHeritage
  • Click on menu 'Family tree' - then sub menu 'Manage trees'. A list of trees will be presented.
  • Choose 'Export to GEDCOM' for your selected tree. You will then receive a link to your GEDCOM file in an e-mail.
  • Open the link on the unit where you have installed Kinsmap or to Dropbox, Google Drive or other installed storage service.
  • Start Kinsmap and add a family tree from the main menu.

Screen Overlay Detected

Screen overlay detected

If you are using Android 6 Marshmallow you may experience the message Screen overlay detected when trying to give Kinsmap permission to read external files. This is a security mechanism in Android that is meant to prevent malicious programs to use its overlay to make undesired changes to settings of your phone. In practice this means that you will not be able to give Kinsmap its needed permissions until you have stopped all active screen overlays (temporarily). A list with screen overlay apps will be presented, but typically just a few are active at the moment. The face bubble in Facebook Messenger is an example of such an overlay.

The Kins Wheel

This is the main view. Ancestors or descendants are visualized by a traditional circle diagram or wheel. In the centre you will find the person in focus. We call this person the proband.

The Kins Wheel


The ruler icon is used to enable/disable colorization by distance. The cells will be color coded according to the distances between the birth places of the proband and his/her relatives. A color scale will appear.

Please note that the number persons in a view can be greater than the total number of persons in the tree due to pedigree collapse (which is the origin of doublets).

Person Menu

The person menu

For the selected person the following information is shown: name, birth year, (death year), birth place, spouse

Reduce the height of the menu by dragging downwards. Restore full height by dragging upwards.

Browse generations by tapping repeatedly on text at the top. A generation ring will be colored blue in the wheel and the corresponding persons will be shown on the map.

Keep in mind that most buttons have a tool tip that is shown upon a long press.

The Kins Map

Choose the map view by touching the map icon in the toolbar. The first touch brings the split view with the Kins Wheel at the top and the map at the bottom. After a second touch the map is shown full screen with the Kins Wheel as an overlay.

The Kins Map

Disable/enable showing of heat map by a long press on the map background.

Select a person by touching a map marker or a cell in the Kins Wheel. The selected person is highlighted with a yellow marker in the wheel and on the map.

The number of generations shown is limited by the choice made under Settings.

Main Menu

The main menu is activated by touching the icon in the upper left corner of the kins wheel. Here you can add new family trees and select among existing trees. There is also a settings menu and a link to relevant help pages.

Main menu

The more important settings are:

  • Choice of Kinsmap language
  • Number of generations to show in detail view and bird's eye view respectively
  • Whether to show photos or not
  • Text size used in the Kins Wheel. For bigger screens it may be a good idea to increase this somewhat.
  • The distance to the furthest relative, used by the color coding of the kins wheel. The value limits the greatest value in the color scale. Relatives born further away than this distance will be coded in white.

Settings are stored permanently.