Move over, Google Maps, Nokia's free offline navigation coming to Android and iOS before year-end

Buried under all the excitement around the Note 4 and Sony unveilings today come some great news for all Android owners. Nokia's Sean Fernback gave an interview for the Wall Street Journal, confirming that Samsung won't have exclusivity on its Android app version for long.

In fact, he says, Nokia's mapping software will land in the form of an app for all Android and iOS device by the end of the year. If your heads are spinning at the moment, we don't blame you, as Nokia gave billions to acquire NAVTEQ a few years ago, and created arguably the best offline navigation solution for mobile devices, which until now was exclusive to Windows Phone devices. Wait, there is more, as the HERE Maps navigation suite will be coming free of charge, which would really throw a monkey wrench in the venerable Google and Apple Maps solutions, which require you to be connected to the Internet for search and navigation. The Nokia Maps suite, on the other hands, lets you download maps of whole countries and regions beforehand, and then use them for searching an address or POI, and navigate with voice guidance to the spot, relying solely on the satellites swirling above your head. Moreover, it includes public parks maps and public transit options, though it was not immediately clear if those will make it in the Android and iOS map apps. 

Nokia is not looking to capitalize and profit on its offline navigation tech, as it doesn't have an advertising model built around it, but rather wants to make mapping more precise with the help of the millions of users that will undoubtedly download its new apps. Hopefully this will force Google or Apple to provide their own mapping with free offline guidance, though we aren't waiting with bated breath for that to happen any time soon.

source: WSJ



1. ArtSim98

Posts: 3535; Member since: Dec 21, 2012


18. TheMan

Posts: 494; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

Agreed. Finally!

25. microsoftnokiawin

Posts: 1268; Member since: Mar 30, 2012


2. draconic1991

Posts: 200; Member since: Apr 27, 2012

so the exclusive deal with samsung only for a month or so??

3. XperiaFanZone

Posts: 2277; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

Does G Maps have turn by turn navigation? I rarely use it.

5. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Yes, but online only unlike Here Maps.

16. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

Well, kinda. If you start the search while you have a data connection, it will give you the turn by turn even after you lose that connection. But yeah, complete online functionality would be great. I'm ready looking forward to trying it out.

7. boosook

Posts: 1442; Member since: Nov 19, 2012

Of course it has. It will also tell you the fastest route and alternate routes, the traffic and if there are road works or accidents. Its main "problem" is that it doesn't work if you're offline. While I don't think it's a great problem during daily use, a navigator with offline turn by turn navigation could be very useful when you travel, for example.

4. bugsbunny00

Posts: 2262; Member since: Jun 07, 2013

and rabbits likes carrots.

6. mayur007

Posts: 593; Member since: Apr 10, 2012

Good choice nokia but charm of nokia phone was maps if they will provide to android with same features then there is no use of buying a nokia phone

9. boosook

Posts: 1442; Member since: Nov 19, 2012

Which Nokia phones? You mean Microsoft phones. Microsoft and Nokia are two separate companies now. Lumia phones are a Microsoft product. They carry the Nokia brand because MS have licensed it for 10 years. Nokia does not sell phones anymore, so they are not interested anymore in keeping their maps an exclusive to Windows Phone. Quite the contrary, instead. They don't care about WP anymore. At least, not more than Android or iOS now.

21. Damo579

Posts: 264; Member since: May 18, 2013

The Nokia name is for the Asha line. Lumia phones won't have the Nokia name to much longer, probably for this year no longer than that.

8. swiekekodok

Posts: 58; Member since: Jul 19, 2014

I really miss you,Nokia..... (not maps,but smartphone)

22. Damo579

Posts: 264; Member since: May 18, 2013

They might be back in 2016 :)

10. rihel_95

Posts: 305; Member since: Mar 21, 2012

Google Maps should bring Offline Searching, instead of just Offline Cache-ing, as being Offline is a great feature and HERE Maps would surely bank on it.

11. diehardnokian

Posts: 147; Member since: Apr 27, 2014

immediate loove!! great Nokia:D

12. jbitounis

Posts: 54; Member since: Oct 08, 2011

I used to rely on Nokia Maps for years and it rarely let me down. In comparison Google Maps is really weak, at least in terms of navigation. I won't even bother commenting on Apple Maps.

13. fireblade

Posts: 717; Member since: Dec 27, 2013

Google maps sucks because it's not offline & not vector based. Thank Nokia for bringing here maps to android. I always use sygic but the map is not as complete as Google maps.

14. fireblade

Posts: 717; Member since: Dec 27, 2013

And for devices with mediatek chip inside, this app will be a waste because the GPS sensor sucks.

15. Leo_MC

Posts: 7190; Member since: Dec 02, 2011

Can't wait!!!

17. jojon

Posts: 433; Member since: Feb 11, 2014

All you droid and ios people are gonna be rocked, if you thought you had great nav. before, you in for a treat

19. hltechie unregistered

Awesome! Can't wait to try it out!

20. Cod3rror

Posts: 142; Member since: Apr 06, 2013

It's great news and free is fantastic! But Nokia Maps lacks so many modern features. No search by coordinates No navigation from a picture exif data No multiple route choices No multiple route points/stops No contacts navigation No gps coordinates - display/copy Even the old Symbian S60 version of Nokia Maps is better.

23. vivzek

Posts: 38; Member since: Jul 03, 2012

I am totally waiting for it. Here maps are superb and have better details than Google maps. All my places are saved in Here maps because of my previous windows phone. So, this is an amazing news to hear...

24. StraightEdgeNexus

Posts: 3689; Member since: Feb 14, 2014

please my beloved Nokia, bring your amazing maps to android! heck I'm even ready to pay for them :)

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