Fortunately for those of you with Android OS smartphone owners. There’s always development undertaken by the developers. This time good news comes from Google, Google Maps that was exactly always been one of the top apps on the Android platform, with new features added regularly by Google. A new version has rolled out today that adds useful features that will be popular with both those in urban areas and those in rural spots.

Google Maps Offline
Google Maps Offline

Just as information, Google Maps (formerly Google Local) is a web mapping service application and technology provided by Google, free (for non-commercial use), that powers many map-based services, including the Google Maps website, Google Ride Finder, Google Transit, and maps embedded on third-party websites via the Google Maps API.

It offers street maps, a route planner for traveling by foot, car, or public transport and an urban business locator for numerous countries around the world. Google Maps satellite images are not updated in real time, they are several months or years old.

Google Maps uses a close variant of the Mercator projection, so it cannot show areas around the poles. A related product is Google Earth, a stand-alone program which offers more globe-viewing features, including showing polar areas.

Now, Google anyway has started reportedly been storing maps as vectors, not as massive images, so whenever it chooses to go offline, it will have no trouble due to size of the stored data.

To activate the feature, you’ll first have to visit the Labs section of the Maps application, which you can access using the Menu button. Enable the Download Map Area option, and from then on when you browse to a Place page and hit the ‘More’ button, you’ll see an option to locally store a map of the surrounding area.

Google Maps Offline - 2
Google Maps Offline - 2

And it’s a big surrounding area, Google will download local copies of the map tiles within a 10 mile radius of that venue. The vector based tiles use much less data (around 1/100th), which means they are quicker to download and can be stored locally without using too much storage space. Google Maps for Android has actually been caching mapping data automatically for some time now the difference this “download maps” feature brings is that it lets users explicitly choose which areas to store locally.

Since the turn by turn navigation of Ovi Maps is coming on Windows Phone 7, Google Maps needs to pull something out of its hat to compete. Google Maps has been a unique selling proposition for Android platform, which may not be used by the users on a daily basis, but feels great to have when they are in a new place.

You can get the new Google Maps in the Android Market. Congratulations to feel easy with one touch. Now the world is in your grasp.

1 thought on “Google Maps on Android owners goes offline

  1. Ping-balik: Laurent LATHIEYRE

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