Tag Archives: Ovi Maps

Finger Races: Nokia Maps v Google Maps

One of Nokia Maps’ biggest strengths is its ability to pre-load maps. Once you know where you’re headed, you can download the maps for that city/country over the air or via your computer for free before you leave and you’ll never be in a situation where you’re lost, just because your phone can’t pull the maps via the internet connection.

Needless to say its also useful even if you have speedy data as you save on data costs and no matter how fast your connection, it’ll never beat local storage. Someone decided to put together a fun video just to show this, the real action starts a few seconds in.

It may be pertinent to note that Google Maps on Android can now pre-cache maps in 10 mile blocks, useful, but that still doesn’t let use you those maps for navigation. Google Maps may be the leader in search, POIs, and public transport directions, but there’s nothing to beat Nokia Maps’ navigation and zero online dependency.

Hat tip to ZCJ for the find.

Exclusive: Nokia Maps Come To iOS & Android Via The HTML5 Route

Nokia recently made it clear that other manufactures of Windows Phone based devices would also have access to their famed Ovi Maps, slightly surprising, but I guess that was part of the deal they struck with Microsoft. But what’ll come as another pleasant surprise is that users on Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android will not be left bereft either. Nokia’s soft launched a brand new HTML5 powered, mobile optimized Nokia Maps website that as you will see below works perfectly on Android and iOS.

Exclusive: Nokia Maps Come To iOS & Android Exclusive: Nokia Maps Come To iOS & Android

The website (m.maps.ovi.com) is still very much beta (read basic), with the last update being carried out on July 7, but you can still browse worldwide maps on the go and plan a route, both driving and walking. Coupled with access to the GPS, it lets you track your movement accurately. On Android, you get small zoom keys to let you zoom in and out, but on iOS pinch to zoom works perfectly making the experience a tad better. This is probably down to better support for HTML5 technologies on iOS v Android.

Here’s a quick video overview Nokia Maps on Android and iOS:

With the speed at which Nokia’s Maps team works, I can imagine that the website will get pretty regular updates, perhaps incorporating POI and other goodies soon. This move marks a clear assault on Google Maps which for a long time were the sole runners when it came to cross platform deployment. In a lot of countries where Google doesn’t offer navigation, Nokia Maps via their HTML5 foray have the opportunity of matching the functionality the native Google Maps app provides.

I can see Nokia going the Google way with this, offer everyone your Maps so they get hooked but keep the best experience for your own platform. If you’re wondering this is how it looks on the iPad 2.

Check out the video for the full blown overview of Nokia Maps on Android (Galaxy S2) and iOS (iPad 2).

Finally before you start making your mind about it, remember this is a soft launch, a first step so to speak.

Latest Ovi Maps Beta Lets You Download Entire Countries Over The Air

There has been a pretty impressive beta of Ovi Maps floating around on Nokia’s Beta Labs over the last few weeks. It among other things like a new UI and a ton of new features, it brings pinch to zoom to multitouch capable Symbian^3 devices. That beta has just gotten a whole lot better with the ability to download street maps of complete countries over the air without you ever having to touch the Map Loader application on your PC. This also means that Mac users have one less reason to complain as they are no longer bereft of the ability to load maps before they go travelling.

Latest Ovi Maps Beta Lets You Download Entire Countries Over The Air Latest Ovi Maps Beta Lets You Download Entire Countries Over The Air

But that’s not all, the update also brings:

  • My Position and Search are now integrated (now called Map). When accessed, it will show your last map view.
  • Back button in Favourites.
  • Long tap functionality to delete & rename collections & routes.
  • Pop up for first time use – to inform user to download new map data (when upgrading 3.04 > 3.06 for the first time).
  • Improved behaviours of transit lines settings in map toolbox (no more grey out).
  • Compass calibration hint.
  • Refreshed place details information view.

Needless to say, its time to head over to the beta labs and grab the update. You will need to sign in with your Nokia Account to get access to the download, but since we’re always happy to make things easier, here are the direct links::

Ovi Maps Updated To v3.04: Faster Fix & More Points Of Interest

One of Nokia’s most compelling services, Ovi Maps, has just been updated to version 3.04. The update aims to brings even an even faster GPS fix irrespective of whether you are in the mall, on the street surrounded by skyscrapers or driving on an open highway by integrating Wi-Fi positioning. Nokia admits that it is a work in progress and it will get better and better as more people use it.

Ovi Maps Updated: Faster Fix & More Points Of Interest

The next functionality that was worked upon was the graphics performance when zooming in and out of maps, panning and tilting. This new version should be faster on your existing device and on upcoming devices like the N8 which also have faster hardware, it will be blazing fast.

Thirdly, the update brings more points of interest, consolidated from Navteq, Lonely Planet, Michelin, local Yellow pages companies like Telegate in Germany, Cityvox in France, Yell in Spain and Yellow Pages in Turkey. Next is the addition of Qype, Europe’s leading portal of user generated recommendations, this will help users review and discover and rate Qype places.

If you are in the mood for some trivia, here is some “Together, we drive more than 14 times around the world every day with Ovi Maps “.

Lastly, to make the Nokia plus Ovi Maps offering even more sweet, the N97, N97 mini, 6710 Navigator and X6 ship with the new Ovi Maps, a car holder and a car charger in box, while the 5800 XpressMusic, 5230, E52 and E72 will ship with the new Ovi Maps and a car holder. Amazing value.

Head to nokia.com/maps to get the latest release.

We Get Mapping With The N97 Mini Trunk – Old School Style

Our N97 Mini Trunk came with a Quill, a compass, a diary, an address book, some ink, a calculator and some other items, all of which can prove incredibly useful or amazingly useless in a quest for navigation. As luck would have it, the rub of the green didn’t go our way and what ensued was funny for the spectator, but incredibly frustrating for the individuals. I give you, Challenge 2 – Maps!

Ovi Maps has made life easier for a lot of us, and we often wonder what people did before navigation. Show us how having Ovi Maps on your N97 mini device can make life easier. Using the tools at your disposal we want you and your trunk buddy to create a fun video showing us how things used to be done, and how we do it now. Trunk v/s N97 Mini!

Think of a creative way to have fun with maps and submit your video online.

After this we have just one more challenge left and under 1:30 hours to go.

The Ovi Maps Route Race At SXSW

Day 3 of SXSW and the brilliant folks at WOM World had something incredibly awesome planned – the Ovi Maps Route Race. The idea was simple – navigate around Austin with Ovi Maps. The fun part was that we were going to be doing it on Segways and on a ‘confrence bike’. The experience was incredible, but that’s not really why I am writing this post. It is to share the navigation experience.

The Ovi Maps Route Race At SXSW

As you are aware, Ovi Maps navigation just went free worldwide for quite a number of devices, including the N97 and that’s the Nokia we used today. Austin, Texas dosen’t have many tall buildings and today was a clear day – perfect conditions for a good GPS connection so the N97 had no problems keeping a lock.

A route was already planned using the http://maps.ovi.com/ page and then sync’ed to the N97 from within the Ovi Maps app. This is important, because in a new city you could sit back at the hotel, ask for the city’s landmarks and then put them in your route and give yourself a nice tour.

Once we got navigating we realised that Ovi Maps has amazing accuracy, it won’t just stop navigating near the landmark we’d set, but it would only stop when we were exactly there. This caused a lot of delays in our trip as we had to wait for everyone to checkin before moving on, but if I were  on my own I’m sure I’d appreciate that.

Since the route was already sync’d in, we just had to select it to get going. Like it is while using driving navigation, the app would recalculate when we missed a turn or over shot it. The audio directions were clear and perfectly timed.  To sum it up, we used Ovi Maps to use create a route, sync it, follow it and reach our destination- all without much fuss and for free. I will have to say it delivered. What more could you ask for? Bettter search perhaps?