How to: use Google Maps and Here Maps offline

Saqib Shah
August 18, 2014

Earlier this year Google Maps caught up with its Windows Phone counterpart; Here, by introducing an offline mode for its popular app.

Although we were just as shocked as you to find out that Microsoft was actually ahead of Google in one field of mobile software, this is actually a useful feature that everyone should get to grips with. And Microsoft only inherited the Here app from Nokia following its buyout, so let’s give some credit to the Finnish manufacturer too.

Back to the subject at hand, it’s actually very simple to use Google Maps and Here Maps offline and it can save you some valuable mobile data costs – especially when navigating abroad. Not to mention the fact that if your reception is playing up, having map locations saved offline could prove crucial in an emergency.

We have provided screenshots for the iOS version of Google Maps as the steps are virtually identical to the Android version.

Here’s what you do:

[alert type=alert-blue]Using Google Maps offline on iOS   and Android[/alert]

Step 1: Search for a location on Google Maps, we chose St. Paul’s Cathedral

GM iOS step 1

Step 2: Tap or pull up the info bar at the bottom of the screen

GM iOS step 2

Step 3: Scroll to the bottom, where you will see the “Save map to use offline” option

GM iOS step 3

Step 4: You will be prompted to save the map location, simply select “Save” at the bottom of the screen

GM iOS step 4

Step 5: Name the offline map in the pop-up notification and click “Save”

GM iOS step 5

Step 6: You will see a confirmation saying “Map saved”

GM iOS step 6

Step 7: Once you’re offline go to your profile to view your saved maps

GM iOS step 7

Step 8: Click on the destination in Google Maps and it will be displayed for offline use

GM iOS step 8

[alert type=alert-blue]Using Here Maps offline on Windows Phone[/alert]

Step 1: Access “maps” under the applications section in the settings menu on your Windows Phone device,

Here - Step 1

Step 2: Press the “download maps” button

Here - Step 2

Step 3: As per the onscreen instructions, hit the “plus” icon at the bottom of the screen to select a map

Here - Step 4

Step 4: Choose the continent where your selected region is located, we chose Europe

Here - Step 4

Step 5: Scroll through the respective countries and make your choice, we selected UK

Here - Step 5

Step 6: Choose the region within the country you would like to make available offline, we chose all UK regions (meaning a larger download – be specific if you can)

Here - Step 6

Step 7: Your downloaded map can now be searched for on Here, or if it’s your immediate location it will open automatically

Here - Step 7

Step 8: You can now also use the search bar to get directions to other locations too

Here - Step 8 (1)

About the Author

Saqib Shah

Tech/gaming journalist for What Mobile magazine and website. Interests include film, digital media and foreign affairs.

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