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Learn How To Use Map Function in Python? & Its Benefits | DataTrained


The Map function in Python is a powerful built-in tool that allows us to apply a given function to any iterable, such as a list, tuple, set, or dictionary. The function will be applied to each element of the iterable and the resulting map object is returned.

This can be extremely useful for efficiently performing operations such as transforming the elements of a data structure, calculating the cumulative sum of values, or iterating over multiple lists simultaneously. Furthermore, it is possible to use lambda functions with map() for more concise code.

What is the Map Function in Python?

What is the Map Function in Python?

The map function in Python is an iterator that applies a given transformation function to each element of an iterable, such as a tuple or list and returns the result. This function is employed when applying a single transformation to all elements of the iterable, and both the iterable and the transformation are passed as parameters to the map().

Syntax of Map in Python

The syntax of the Python map() function is:

map(function, iterable)

In the above syntax:

  1. function: This is the transformation function through which each element of the iterable will be traversed.
  2. iterable: For the purpose of mapping, it is necessary to employ an iterable object such as a sequence, list, or tuple.

Benefits of Using Map Function in Python

  1. The map() function is written in the C programming language and has been highly optimized, rendering its internal loop map more efficient than a conventional for loop.
  2. Map has a more efficient memory utilization than conventional loops, as with a for loop the entire list must be stored in computer memory, whereas map allows for retrieval of individual items from memory on an as-needed basis.

How to Use the Map Function in Python

How to Use the Map Function in Python?

To use the map function in Python, we should pass a transformation function and an iterable (or multiple tables) to our map function. The transformation function is applied to each individual item in the iterable(s) and a map object is returned as output. To know more about data analytics courses Pune

This object contains all the transformed items, allowing us to perform additional operations on these data points such as sorting, filtering, Map Function in Python, or further transforming them. The map function is a powerful tool for quickly manipulating data sets without the need for complex loops or algorithms.

Common Mistakes When Using Map Function in Python

Forgetting to convert the data type of keys and values:

When using the map function in Python, it’s important to remember that both keys and values need to be converted to the appropriate data type. If you forget to do this, your code may not work as expected.

Not initializing the map correctly:

In order to use a map in Python, you must first initialize it correctly. This involves specifying the type of keys and values that will be used in the map. 

Not identifying the right type of map:

Python offers several different types of maps, and you need to choose the one that best suits your needs. For example, if you need to store and retrieve data quickly, you may want to use a hashmap. 

Not using the correct methods:

Depending on the type of map you are using, you may need to use different methods when performing operations. Map Function in Python, For example, if you are using a hashmap, you may need to use the get method instead of the indexing operator.

How to Choose a Suitable Iterable for Your Code

How to Choose a Suitable Iterable for Your Code?

In the Python programming language, an iterable is an object with a finite number of elements, possessing the capacity to yield its elements one at a time. This characteristic allows for iteration of the iterable using a for loop.

The range() function is indeed iterable, as its output can be traversed through iteration:

for index in range(3):


Code language: Python (python)





  • Implementing concurrent iteration of two iterables.

def add(a , b):

       return a + b

 x = [1,3,5,7,9]

 y = [2,4,6,8,10]

 res = map(add , x , y)


Output: [ 3 , 7 , 11 , 15 , 19]

Advanced Uses of the Python Map Function

Advanced Uses of the Python Map Function

The application of map() is not limited to any specific type of Python callable; rather, the only requirement for a callable to be used with map() is that it must take an argument and return a concrete, useful value. Click here to know more about data analytics courses in India

Examples of applicable callables include classes, instances that implement a special method called __call__(), instance methods, class methods, static methods, and functions. Additionally, there are some built-in functions that can be utilized with a map(). For instance:

>>> numbers = [-2, -1, 0, 1, 2]

>>> abs_values = list(map(abs, numbers))

>>> abs_values

[2, 1, 0, 1, 2]

>>> list(map(float, numbers))

[-2.0, -1.0, 0.0, 1.0, 2.0]

>>> words = [“Welcome”, “to”, “Real”, “Python”]

>>> list(map(len, words))

[7, 2, 4, 6]

One can leverage any in-built function with the utilization of map(), provided that the function is equipped to accept an argument and return a value.

The following program utilizes the map function to output the cube of the first 10 natural numbers: 

def cube(n):

      return n*n*n

 a = list(range(1,11))

 res = map(cube , a)


Output: [1, 8, 27, 64, 125, 216, 343, 512, 729, 1000, 1331]

Utilize a Lambda function in conjunction with the map() method to process data.

a = list(range(1,10))

 res = map(lambda n : n*n , a)


Output: [1, 4, 9, 16, 25, 36, 49, 64, 81, 100, 121]


The map function in Python is an essential tool for data manipulation and transformation. It applies a given function, or ‘transformer’, to each item in an iterable object such as a list or tuple, and returns an iterator, meaning it can be used to iterate over the transformed elements one at a time. This technique, commonly known as mapping, is fundamental to many data analysis tasks and makes it possible to quickly apply transformations to large collections of data with minimal effort.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the map () function used for?

Python’s map() is a built-in function that applies a transformation function to each item within an iterable, thereby generating a new iterable without the need for an explicit for loop, commonly known as mapping. This technique is useful when there is a requirement to process and transform items within an iterable.

2. What is the map function in Python input?

The map function in Python

The map() function, a built-in function of the Python programming language, is utilized to apply a desired function to each element within an iterable object, such as a list or a dictionary. This produces a new iterable object (a map object) that can then be utilized in other portions of the code.

3. What is map filter function in Python?

The map() function, also referred to as map and filter in Python, is a higher-order function that accepts a function and a sequence of ‘iterables’ as parameters, performing the specified function on each iterable in the sequence and providing the output.

4. What is map vs dictionary in Python?

A mapping type is a data structure composed of key-value pairs. Python’s sole natively-implemented mapping type is the dictionary, which implements an associative array abstract data type. This structure is commonly used for temporary storage of precomputed values to avoid replication of computations.

5. What does map () return in Python?

This tutorial will provide an overview and application of the Python map() function, with accompanying examples. An iterator holding the results is returned by the map() function after applying a specified operation on each element of an iterable (such as a list or tuple).


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