How about the thought of getting directions or location from Google Maps without even having an internet connection? Cool isn’t it! It has been made possible by Google in the last month. You can now save parts of the map you searched for your offline use. You just need to zoom in on the location that you want to access without internet connection, hit on the menu button and select the option that says ‘Offline’.
There can be seen significant changes in the process after the recent updates of Google Maps 7. If you already have updated the new version then you must have found out that no such functionality exists anymore. Actually a hitting the menu button wouldn’t do anything for you.
How Maps can be seen offline has been completely changed by Google after this update. It can’t be called all easy to use and intuitive as it appeared before, in fact if you don’t know what to do then you’ll seriously get confused and it’ll be very laborious to first understand and then use it accordingly. It is seriously not mentioned anywhere how to use it while you use this application.
Now, instead of using the menu button to save a map easily for your offline use, you have to type OK Maps in the search bar to do so. It seems kind of impossible for everyone to use it or know how to save maps for offline viewing unless you regularly read about announcements made by Google on it’s blog or someone else tells you about it.
If you were using the non-updated version when Google Maps showed it’s intuitive side, you just needed to type O in the search bar and it would open a list of commands like OK MAPS, but now it’s not necessary that this command will even work with this update. Whenever you type OK Maps in the search bar, it doesn’t seem optimized and takes you back to the map display page. After doing this you can now see pre-loading maps and the loading percentage in the search bar.
This is the indicator that the contents of the part of Map are being saved by this app to your device where you can access it easily offline. No options to clear offline data are available anymore in the settings and I am not sure how you are going to do that. It seems that it gets saved into the cache directory that you can find under Android/data/com.google.android.apps.maps/cache and then you can delete it from here.
The perspective of Google towards this recent update in Google Maps in kind of unclear. If it’s not as intuitive and user friendly as it was before, then why would Google bring such an update. I guess to keep people from using maps offline so that they may stay online all the time, maybe maybe not!
Note – Google is soon going to update Maps with a link that says ‘Make This Map Area Available Offline’, which will make it a bit more easier to download maps for your offline usage.