How To Use Google Maps Offline Feature In Android

Google Maps Offline Feature

Google Maps is one of the popular apps in Android owing to its user-friendliness and cool features. One of these is the Google Maps Offline feature, which comes in handy when you’re in an area with poor or no network connectivity and you really need to use the app.

While it works a lot better when connected to the internet, because GPS and WiFi connection work together as you use the app, it can still work while offline.

GPS feeds the app with the coordinates, which will display on a visual map loaded from the server via your internet connection, and this is why apps can be rendered unusable.

However, by default, Google Maps creates a cache when you’re online, but it’s hard to zoom in or out manually to all the levels to cache the area you want.

This is why the Offline feature was introduced in Google Maps 5.0, though you need to know how to access it and download an area of the map before you set out on your journey.

Using Google Maps Offline feature

Download the map for offline use

To do this:

  • Connect to the internet via WiFi or data and open Google Maps on your Android device
  • Tap Menu>Settings
  • Select Labs
  • Enable Precache Map Area
  • Go back to Map view
  • Go to the area you’d like saved for offline use and long press at the exact spot you want to go to. Wait for the map to load the address of the area
  • Now click on the spot to open the detailed view
  • Select Precache map area (this feature is available only when enabled from labs)

Google Maps will download a 10-mile area radius over the area you selected i.e. the address itself (shown as a square box). Once the download is finished, you can look at all details in the cached spot without connecting to the internet.

You can repeat the process on different places on the map if the 10-mile radius won’t suffice so you get to cover the area you need.

How to delete cached maps

When using Google Maps Offline feature, there’ll be a pre-cached map area, which you can delete if you must. Map caching tends to hog space in your internal memory so you need to delete once done. To do this:

  • Go to Map settings
  • Select Cache>Pre-cached map area
  • Press the red cross near an address

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