Google Maps offline is a perk that is coming soon to Android devices. At its Google Maps event today in San Francisco, the company unveiled the new feature along with other improvements and upgrades to its Google maps service for mobile devices and the web.
The new offline maps feature is supposed to roll out to around 100 countries in the next few weeks. While the minimum size for any offline map was listed as 50 MB, users can expect the files to be much larger for major cities.
Someone travelling could then download the map of that city and connect to GPS for navigation, even if they are in an area with poor coverage.
While Google did commit to bringing its full set of features to iOS devices, it was unclear how deep that integration would be. Most Google iOS apps lack some of the features of their Android siblings due to a combination of supporting their own platform first and limitations that Apple has in place with its third-party developers.
The Internet has been filled with recent rumors of Apple ditching Google Maps in iOS 6. The question for smartphone users will be which mobile operating system will offer the strongest map service. Should Apple ditch Google Maps, the search company could offer its own app independently, offering the features that have been missing on the iPhone for some time.