In this article, you'll learn all the important information about generating vector tiles using MapTiler Desktop. The option is available since MapTiler Desktop 10.0 in all editions including MapTiler Desktop Free.
What are vector tiles?
First, if you want to learn more about the vector tiles in general, what benefits they bring to users, why would you want to use them or what is their history, please head to the "Useful links" section at the end of this article. You'll find a few related sources listed there.
Rendering vector tiles with MapTiler Desktop
Rendering vector tiles with MapTiler Desktop is really easy. Just start the application and open the file with your geodata. For the list of supported vector file formats refer to this link. If you need some sample data to test MapTiler Desktop on, you can download one of the Natural Earth datasets.
MapTiler Desktop will automatically set the CRS and geolocation of the rendered map. At this point, you can proceed by clicking on the "Export" button. However, you may want to change the coordinate system for your map or the geographical location of your data (Note: Assigning location visually functionality is not available for vector tiles).
Next, you'll be prompted to select an output format for your tiles. If you're not sure which one to choose, please refer to the article that compares Folder, GeoPackage, and MBTiles formats.
MapTiler Desktop will automatically prepare output layers for your final tileset, with all of the attributes of your source vector data. You can rename the output layer, edit key=value attributes for each feature or remove them. You can also set minimal and maximal zoom levels for final tiles.
Next, you'll be taken to the page where you can turn the tile compression on/off or change the tile size. In most cases, you'll want to leave these settings unchanged. You can also edit the metadata of the generated map there. Clicking the "Render" button will start the rendering process.
After the rendering is finished, you'll be taken to the vector tiles viewer in inspect mode, where you'll be able to see the properties of all the rendered features.
Clicking the "Continue" button will take you to the final page, where you can upload the tiles to MapTiler Cloud (if you chose GeoPackage or MBTiles as the output format) or use another service of your choice.