Google Maps Getting Offline Navigation & Enhanced Speed on Android Today

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Nov 10, 2015.

  1. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief
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    [​IMG]

    Those genius Google Maps engineers are finally ready to pull the trigger on the offline navigation mode of Google Maps. According to their own blog, the feature will start rolling out today in an update to Google Maps.

    It's remarkably simple despite it being years in development; it works by first prompting the user to save an area and then the app simply downloads an offline map for you to view at your leisure. The app will even update the map every 15 days. These updates occur when the phone is plugged into a charger and connected to Wi-Fi.

    There are a couple of things wroth noting: you can't switch to a satellite view, and there aren't any offline walking or public transport directions. Also, businesses which are registered on Google Maps will appear with only their names, star ratings, and phone numbers. They will not have photos or user reviews (of course this will display if you use it online).

    That's not all that we are getting in the update though. Along with adding these extra features with offline search and navigation to Google Maps, they are also improving the speed and performance of the app. Nice! Here's what Google project manager Amanda Bishop had to say about it,

    She added, "everybody on our team who uses it can't stand it when they have to use the old app because it's crazy how frequently you find yourself seeing that spinner waiting for results. Once you get used to it returning them in a second every single time, you quickly get used to how snappy the app feels."

    Nifty! We can't wait to try it out her at HQ!

    Source: Google
     
    #1 dgstorm, Nov 10, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2015
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  2. Jonny Kansas

    Jonny Kansas Administrator
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    Wondering if the offline maps will still have a size limitation. I had previously tried to save a map of the area between where I call home now and where I used to call home. It's around 1,000 miles by road, one way. The area was too big. Turns out that maps doesn't use a TON of data while navigating anyway though, unless you keep ignoring the directions, so I suppose this is more for an "I'm out of the coverage area" situation than a "Gee, I'd like to not have to worry about maps using any data on my trip" situation.
     
  3. Gremlin

    Gremlin Active Member

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    Well this one helps you save turn by turn notifications..
     
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  4. Jonny Kansas

    Jonny Kansas Administrator
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    Yes, but I'm wondering how large of a trip you can download at once.

    Sent from my Nexus 6P
     
  5. Sajo

    Sajo Diamond Member

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    I have to travel again next week (back to VA again). I hope I have the update by then so I can try it out.

    Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
     
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  6. Jonny Kansas

    Jonny Kansas Administrator
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    Let me know! We leave at the end of next week. Not that I can't afford the data needed to do it old school, but wouldn't mind conserving that much more.

    I'm guessing offline navigation won't include things like accidents, construction, and etc, since, by definition, it's running offline...

    Or maybe those are push notifications based on location? Will be interesting to see.

    I never really thought that maps took THAT LONG to load stuff up. For Pete's sake, you can search the entire world in palm of your hand. But, I'll welcome any speed improvements they wanna throw my way.
     
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  7. Sajo

    Sajo Diamond Member

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    I would imagine a lot of the online features would not be available. I agree, never thought it was slow either. Seems like a cool idea though, might save some people some data, or work better in areas where signal is weak. If i get a chance to use it I will post my experience.

    Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
     
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  8. kodiak799

    kodiak799 Gold Member

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    Yeah, the big advantage here is losing your signal and still being able to get directions

    But good thing there's no reason to need more storage in our phones...
     
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  9. LoudRam

    LoudRam Senior Member

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    I've been using maps offline for a while. All I do is turn on data, let it plot my route, and start the navigation. Then I turn off the data. As long as I don't go off course navigation works fine. If I do miss a turn I just turn on data again and let it correct my course and off it goes again.

    But this upgrade will be nice.
     
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  10. Jonny Kansas

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    I'm not sure how they're any different than leaving data on... Haha!

    Sent from my Nexus 6P
     
  11. lloydstrans

    lloydstrans Platinum Member

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    Maybe I can delete "locus" and "here" now.... Might have to wait until the work the kinks out. Should be next year or so.

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  12. Narsil

    Narsil Silver Member

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    Sweet. I'll be in Uganda for several weeks shortly and will give it a shot. I was thrilled to discover last week that Google finally got around to doing something my OG Tomtom GPS did almost a decade ago and you can now search ALONG YOUR ROUTE.

    If you don't like the way offline maps work in Google, the app MAPS.ME works very, very well. I used it for two weeks in Uganda last year and the maps are zoomable with routing, searchable items, and bookmarkable pushpins.
     
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