XYZ tile layers are layers comprised of multiple tiles that are situated on a server and are made available to the public. Unlike WMTS that follow the OGC standard, the XYZ tile layers are the de facto OpenstreetMap standard. The tiles are basically PNG images, made available trough a web server for which the access is controlled through a specific URL (format: https://…/Z/X/Y.png).
Some examples of XYZ tile layers are the historical maps of Belgium offered by NGI. They can be found on the website Cartesius, where they are also directly available in an ArcGIS Online environment. They all follow the URL format below, and should be added as such. In this article, we highlight how you can add these XYZ tile layers to your ArcGIS software.
If you want to work with your own tile layers, you can publish your own tile layers in the Esri format and share them with your audience. Since tile layers consist of multiple merged images or vector data files, they are perfect to quickly and easily visualize your layers. They are also often used as base maps in ArcGIS software. At the end of this article, you will find some useful links.