Nokia has updated their HERE Maps app with LiveSight support. You can tap the “LiveSight” icon and HERE Maps reveals virtual signs for restaurants, galleries, shops, and sights attached to the buildings in your camera display so you can pinpoint exactly where you’re going just by looking.
- LiveSight reveals what’s around you through your camera display
- Integrated compass shows you which way you’re facing so you can get oriented quickly
Download it here from Windows Phone Store for free.
Nokia Maps are great, but Nokia knows there are parts of the world where the mapping data is lacking. Nokia is however determined to fill in the gaps, and on their Here.com website they now have a new tool in beta which allows users to add their own data to the repository.
Using the Nokia Maps Creator (now in beta) users are able to add streets and points of interest, and even provide information about existing roads, such as speed limits or how noisy the road is.
If there is a mistake on Nokia Maps which has been driving you mad you can visit Nokia Maps Creator here and hopefully sort it out.
Thanks Jason for the tip.
On their blog Nokia Conversations Nokia has announced updates to their mapping data, including some important additions.
Principle amongst these is the addition of mapping data for Israel and also Serbia, with Turn by Turn to follow, which still leaves Japan as a major black spot on the maps.
They also announced what they call “High definition maps” with shapes which are highly precise and detailed to better represent roads, coastlines and streams.
This includes higher detail in wooded areas in Russia, Norway and Sweden, more areas with pedestrian footpaths and better walking navigation, and more detail in less populated areas of Greece, France and Ireland.
The map update includes 133,000 KM of new orÂ amendedÂ roads in UK only in the last 18 months with a similar level of updates in other countries, meaning the maps now include very recent features, such as the tunnel under Roma Tiburtina or in Germany the roads to the future main Berlin airport.
With the announcement of theÂ extensionÂ of Â Nokia Drive + to all Windows Phone 8 handsets in US,Â UKÂ and Canada, the maps have really become a jewel in the crown of not just Nokia, but Windows Phone in general.
Read more at Nokia here.
We all expected better maps when Bing integrated Nokiaâ€™s Navteq data, but it seems the addition of the mapping data also created a huge hole in Bing Maps.
It seems Japan is not one of the countries covered by the data. Other countries omitted from the 110 countries covered include South Korea and Israel.
Interestingly Bing Maps on the desktop has pretty good maps for Japan and Israel, and the previous version of Bing Maps on Windows Phone also had good maps for Japan, making the situation difficult to understand.
Are there any other unsupported countries our readers know about? Let us know below.
Thanks Graham for the tip.
TechRadar has posted this video comparing the performance of mapping software from Nokia, Google and Apple.
While the winner is not clear, the loser certainly was, with Apple Maps showing the poorest feature set and performance.
How are our readers finding the latest version of Nokia Maps? Let us know below.
|Nokia Maps||Bing Maps|
|Google Maps, Bing Maps, and Nokia Maps|
On Nokia’s new WP8 devices, they decided to completely remove the link to the normal “Maps” app on Windows Phone, meaning that you have to rely on Nokia Maps. This has a number of unfortunate downsides for those who live in the United States. Or at least in my city it does.
Slow Launch Speeds
Opening Nokia Maps takes a solid 2 extra seconds compared to the normal “Maps” app on the HTC Radar… and that’s comparing a single core WP7 device to a dual core WP8 device!! But with a new Lumia, you’re forced to use Nokia Maps (or gMaps in the Marketplace) and you can’t use the normal “Maps” app.
Lack of User Reviews
Finding good restaurants is unfortunately tougher on a new Lumia device. Nokia’s map app has zero or very few reviews of most restaurants, whereas the normal “Maps” app always seems to have reviews. El Charro Cafe, a popular Mexican restaurant in my city of around 1 million people (not a small city) has 25 reviews using Microsoft’s “Maps” app, but has zero reviews using Nokia’s app. I did find a restaurant with a review, but the same restaurant had 13 reviews using Bing Maps.
Lack of Store Info
Nokia Maps also lack store hours, an extremely convenient feature found in both Bing Maps and Google Maps.
Search Results are Poor
This whole article mainly applies to the United States, so I’m sure Nokia wins over Bing in other countries, but in my city Nokia Maps and Bing MapsÂ tend to fail, with Nokia coming in last place. Nokia displays an El Charro location that is closed, but Bing (andÂ Google)Â is smart enough to tell you that the location is closed. Search results for AT&T stores are miserable for both Nokia and Bing. Google of course aces the test and finds all the valid AT&T stores (cross referenced with AT&T’s website), but Bing displays locations that Nokia misses and vice versa.
The normal Bing Maps are still in Lumia WP8 devices, butÂ can only beÂ accessed when you click on an address in something like text messaging, as our editor Matthew pointed out. This leads to two separate mapping interfaces, which could confuse consumers.
Is anyone else disappointed with their new Lumia’s mapping experience? I feel like I bought an iPhone! Nokia, the solution is easy, just enable Bing Maps and stop messing with the Windows Phone experience! All Windows Phones are supposed to be the same other than some extras which you can always uninstall; you violated that!
We did not really talk much about Maps yesterday when that HTC 8X Windows Phone 8 tour leaked, but I think on reflection there are some elements which are of note, not for what has changed but for what has remained the same.
To start with, the app is not Nokia branded, with the app simply being Maps, not Nokia Maps, though the icon has been updated somewhat. Secondly, as can be seen in the screen shot above, the client is near identical to the current Bing Maps, except for the absence of the Local Scout, possibly because it is not available in that locality (again something which is regrettably unchanged from Windows Phone 7.5).
Lastly, in the Settings,Â of course the maps offer the option to download maps and check for updates, but for little else. Again, it may be that because turn by turn directions are not available in his locality.
What the video did not show is the turn by turn driving experience, but what is clear is that the rest is pretty much as we are used to from Bing Maps already.
See the video around the 3:30 mark again after the break.
Are our readers disappointed? Let us know below.
Nokia recently published an infographic touting how great their maps were. They have now revealed part of the secret to their success: an army of drivers drawn from their own cars, but also UPS and FedEx trucks.
"While Google’s driven 5 million miles in Street View cars, UPS drives 3.3 billion miles a year," writes Alexis Madrigal from the Atlantic, which tackled the issue.
"We get over 12 billion probe data points per month coming into the organization," Nokia senior VP of Location Content Cliff Fox told Madrigal.
All this data helps Nokia identify changing roads and keep their maps up to date.
"To build it the first time is relatively the smaller task compared to maintaining that map," Fox said.
In 2012, they’ve used the GPS data they get to identify 65,000 road segments Madrigal explained.
Nokia Maps are already widely used in in-car navigation, and has been seeing increasing recognition with deals from Amazon and Oracle recently to adopt the maps for their services, and even Apple recommending it to their troubled customers.
Read more at TheAtlantic.com here.
Thanks Charles for the tip.
UKMobileReview have posted a detailed review of the new maps on the iPhone 5 and all iPhones which upgraded to iOS6 vs Nokia Maps as found on Windows Phone.
The new Apple Maps app offer turn-by-turn navigation, satellite view, 3D mode and traffic information, which should have been an improvement over the Google Maps which they replaced.
A furore has however erupted over the quality and deficiencies of the Maps and UKMobileReview has looked into these issues in detail.
They split their reviewÂ into five sections â€“ Standard view, Satellite View, Online vs Offline, Navigation and Experience and rated each section out of 10.
For the Standard view they found Nokia Maps more clear, and found Apple Maps lacked Point of Interest information.
For Satellite view the found Apple Maps users are reporting that the Satellite View often displays images that seem to have been photoshopped or edited using Instagram and even worseÂ will display bridges as being broken, locations that donâ€™t exist and will quite often be extremely blurry.
For off-line use , of course Apple Maps does not have off-line navigation at all, while Nokia Maps excel at this.
For actual turn by turn navigation Apple Maps integrated very well with the iPhone, showing turn by turn directions on the lock screen for example but in terms of routing can occasionally take users through some weird, unlawful and downright crazy routes.
Lastly, in terms of experience, while the found the iOS experience good, they found Nokiaâ€™s much better.
So hereâ€™s how they stack up after being torn apart in our comparison. Remember the scores below are a sum of the individual scores across each of the five sections. So hereâ€™s the scores:
Nokia Maps â€“ 43 out of 50
Apple Maps â€“ 24 out of 50
Wow Iâ€™m going to be honest and say the Apple Maps score shocks even me. When writing this, I didnâ€™t work out the overall score until the end, in an effort to add impartiality. Iâ€™ve been brutal to Apple Maps and the simple reason is that Apple want Apple Maps to replace the competition and have been pushing it to be recognised as excellent.
Unfortunately for Apple, their first attempt is really quite bad. Sure it does have some nifty features but it definitely doesnâ€™t stack up against Nokia Maps. Itâ€™s clear that just like â€˜AntennaGateâ€™, Apple rolled out a feature without any testing or quality control. In fact, some of the Apple Maps navigation and satellite view shots are actually comical and it begs to belief how the worldâ€™s largest technology company managed to get it SO wrong.
Because they did. Apple Maps is desperately poor. Even free navigation solutions such as NavFree for iOS beat it hands down. Apple occasionally release a product that doesnâ€™t work and try to brush over the ensuing saga. They may have got away with it in â€˜AntennaGateâ€™ but they owe everyone of their users an apology for Apple Maps. They need to either spend some of that $656 billion and buy out a location company or go cap in hand to Nokia / Google and ask for Nokia Maps / Google Maps to be released ASAP for iOS 6.
One canâ€™t help but think that if the late Steve Jobs was CEO and Apple CEO Tim Cook wasnâ€™t, then Apple Maps would not have been released in its current state. Go on Tim, the ballâ€™s now in your courtâ€¦
Read their full detailed comparison at UKMobileReview.com here.
Nokiaâ€™s marketers, striking while the iron is hot, has released the above infographic showing how superior their mapping is to even Google, and certainly Appleâ€™s.
Claiming support for navigation in a 110 countries, nearly twice as much as Google and Appleâ€™s number, the graphic also claims to support public transport information in 10 times more countries as Google, a service that is not offered by Apple at all.
They quote Tim Shepherd, senior analyst at Canalys as saying:
Nokiaâ€™s suite of location-aware apps and services on its new Lumia devices put it in a clear lead over its competitors in terms of the depth, breadth and integration of the mapping, navigation and transport experiences it can offer. It also leads in terms of the global coverage it provides.
See a comparison between Nokia and Apple and Googleâ€™s world coverage for turn by turn navigation after the break.
Nokia Maps is one of those Lumia exclusive applications. This means that it is officially available only on Nokiaâ€™s Windows Phones.
As it is a separate application, it doesnâ€™t replace Bing Maps, which is integrated into the system, but it is linked with it (search key -> search something -> choose result -> swipe to the right hand side and choose it from the list), which is not that bad, because it promises still a fast access. Otherwise you can search a place in the application itself, of course, just by pressing the search button bellow. I think the first solution over the search button may be faster, as not everyone placed Nokia Maps on the first site of the start screen (if it is placed on the home screen at all).
You can search for POI and addresses (for example Homestreet 15, 00000 hometown), as well as regions. If you donâ€™t look for something specific, you can also search â€˜sandwichâ€™, â€˜hamburgersâ€™ etc., or just press the POI button below to show all places nearby. If a place is finally found, you can see its details, photos and reviews or places nearby. If the details show a phone number you can also call it directly. Otherwise there is the option to get there by car, public transport or by foot. Unfortunately it is not linked with Nokia Drive or Nokia transit, because Windows Phone 7.5 does not support this so far, so trying to get there by car is very impractical as Nokia Maps is offers no turn by turn navigation with voice commands. Also there is still no option to copy an address, which means you canâ€™t insert it easily into Nokia Drive or other navigation apps to get fast and safe directions.
Otherwise there is the option to plan a route No, this is just exactly the same as searching a place and getting directions to it. You cannot plan a route like â€™first I want to go to McDerp, after that I will visit my parents and then I will get some vegetable at Wall Derp for my Date with Derpinaâ€™ â€“ a very useless point. Something I donâ€™t understand: Nokia Drive supports traffic data only with my commute, which is available only in the U.S.A. so far, but Nokia Maps shows you the actual traffic situation almost all over the world. (Nokia, seriously?!).
Of course there are also the settings to show, but those are nothing special. You can turn on or off the following:
- The buttons for zooming (just an alternative to multi touch, so you can turn that off)
- Location service
- Show favorites on map
- Synchronize favorites (with the Nokia Servers -> needs a Nokia account)
Then there is also an option for the unit of measurement: Metric, Imperial UK or Imperial US
For now thatâ€™s all I can show you. The integration of Groupon isnâ€™t available in my country, so Iâ€™m not able to demonstrate it (no, I canâ€™t search a place in an American region and take a look on its deals. Groupon in Nokia Maps is completely blocked in Germany), but as soon as I get access to it, I will make another review.
I personally think it is a good mapping application, but it is not much better than Bing Maps. Bing Maps is integrated into the system and starts faster, also there is an option for copy and paste which Nokia Maps does not support. Nokia Maps is good for people who use the public transit very often, but even those people should use a different application (which is not made by Nokia) because Nokia supports only a hand full of regions with public transits. If you have a Nokia account and many favorites in the cloud, then I would say use Nokia Maps, but if it is not problem to type those favorites manually into Bing Maps, use this, at least it supports copy and paste and a faster access, so you can get directions much easier. Users of non-Nokia Windows Phones do not need to be jealous about this application, it isnâ€™t that much better than Bing. It is hard to explain the small differences in a text, so take a look at this, and decide which one is better for you (Blue: Nokia Maps wins, Green: Bing Maps wins)
- Traffic: Both
- Integrated into the system: Bing (Nokia Maps is just linked)
- Which one starts faster?: Bing (Nokia Maps starts in 3 seconds, after 10 seconds the map is shown. Bing starts directly and the map is shown directly, too, as Bing saves the maps on the phones memory, which Nokia Maps doesnâ€™t)
- Offline?: None (but Bing saves the map of the regions you already searched in on the phones memory)
- Access to show all places nearby without searching for specific POI: Nokia Maps (but as far as I know Bing Maps, too, but only in the U.S. over a fourth button in the search application)
- Directions by public transit: Nokia Maps
- Place places on start screen: Both
- Searching by voice: Bing
- Turn by turn with voice commands: None
Just by the way: There is no difference in the map itself, as Bing uses Nokiaâ€™s NAVTEQ mapping technology.
Nokia Maps is available for free and only for Nokia Lumia devices in the Marketplace here.
Nokia has rebranded itself as the Where company, in an effort to leverage their important Navteq asset.
As part of the effort they are integrating Groupon in their Nokia Maps 2.5 update.
In the app local deals will be marked with a green G flag. Each offer will come with detailed product info, and will redirect the user to the Groupon mobile site when selected. The service will only for phones in US.
Nokia Maps will be replacing Bing Maps in Windows Phone 8 on all Windows Phones.
Michael Halbherr, exec VP of location and commerce, Nokia, noted that this was an important part of the plan.
"Nokia will continue nurturing Nokia Maps beyond its signature services. We believe every aspect of the mobile phone will be redefined using location.
"For location to be meaningful, you need a map and a map platform–either you go in and spend multiple years creating that asset, or you acquire that asset. Over the years we’ve built this asset, and that brings us into a very strong position. It’s not something you can catch up to very quickly.
"Scale is critical to our growth. That’s why the horizontal nature of the Windows Phone deal is critical."
The Windows Phone 8 SDK continues to deliver.
We already know in Windows Phone 8 Nokia Maps will be replacing Bing Maps, which the SDK describes as â€œfeatures beautiful cartography, more complete and accurate map data, a new 3-D mode, and hardware-accelerated rendering for smooth performance.â€
The above pictures from the documentation shows the various modes available to developers, including:
Road : displays the normal, default 2-D map.
Aerial : displays an aerial photographic map.
Hybrid : displays an aerial view of the map overlaid with roads and labels.
Terrain : displays physical relief images for displaying elevation and water features such as mountains and rivers.
Developers will also be able to load landmarks, which are 3D renders of major landmarks, and also pedestrian features such as stairs for walking maps.