Google Maps might be the favourite mapping app for the majority of users out there, but it always had one serious disadvantage. If you were always on the go, Google Maps lack of offline support was a huge misstep, especially when you consider Pakistan’s spotty telecom signals coverage.
Well, that is finally changing, with the new feature (Offline Mode Support) now finally being rolling out to Android, with the iOS update to follow in the near future as well.
The new features are a result of hard work on Google’s part over the past two to three years. The data is stored locally on your phone (which might concern people with storage space woes), and once there, it seamlessly switches between offline and online (if you allow it).
This will allow for faster route-management for its users. It will also update if the data is on while you’re on the go, meaning you’ll be notified of new routes if it detects traffic along the way.
The app will also be able to find businesses, their opening hours and contact details.
Obviously, the biggest concern here will be the amount of data stored. According to Google, downloading (most) of Greater London, for instance, will cost you 320 megabytes of your phone’s storage. It will update every 15 days to stay current, which is a good idea.
Where does Google Maps Fall Short?
Users have also complained about not seeing locations while user-generated photos are absent, too. For the time being. satellite navigation and walking/transport routes are not supported. Maps are only downloaded for Driving option currently. Many people bemoan Google taking so long to bring this feature to Android when competing apps and platforms boasted similar functionality for years.
To make offline maps work, you can see a ‘download’ option along with your favourite places. Pressing the button will allow you to keep that place intact whether you have data connection or not. Entire maps can be located via the results sheet or through Offline Areas on the Maps app now. Better late than never Google.