Apple Maps Caches a Large Area For Offline Browsing

Posted October 5, 2012 at 5:22pm by iClarified | Please help us and submit a translation by clicking here | 14704 views

Apple's new Maps application has an additional besides less data consumption, it also caches a much larger area for offline browsing, reports AppleInsider.

With Google Maps in iOS 5 you could only browse about a 10 mile radius when offline; however, the more data efficient vector maps in iOS 6 means you can view a far larger area when offline.

Apple's new vector maps, once loaded in San Francisco, allowed us to browse an entire continent of high level maps (state outlines) while offline, north from Anchorage, Alaska to Lima, Peru and from Honolulu, Hawaii to Montréal, Canada.

At a highway level detail, we could actually navigate most of California, and on a simplified level, the western half of the United States. There were detailed street-level maps available of areas we'd never even looked at while online, as far away as Salt Lake City, Utah (about 740 miles or 1200 km east). Thanks to vectors, you can even view these offline maps in 3D perspective.


Notably, Google Maps for Android does use vector graphics but the site found automatic offline caching is quite poor. Only 49 sq mi of San Francisco showed up after losing connectivity.

"Major highway routes degraded to a blocky mess within ten miles of our loaded location, and even city names disappeared after 40 miles (64 km). Highway 101 vanished into dead ends just 70 miles outside of San Francisco."

However, Google Maps for Android does let you manually save an area of about a 50 mile radius for offline viewing.

It's thought that if or when Google Maps comes back to iOS as a native application, its features will be similar to the Android version.

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Leon - October 5, 2012 at 9:30pm
It's a complete failure bring google maps back I hate it!
Leon - October 5, 2012 at 9:30pm
Hate apple maps that is
Devon - October 5, 2012 at 11:38pm
Awh, what's wrong? Apple did something better than Google and now you're whining about it. Honestly stfu you're making yourself look stupid.
WTF - October 6, 2012 at 6:38am
It is you who who looks stupid, the simple fact is that Apples maps are poor compared to Googles. Open your eyes and compare them side by side
Devon - October 6, 2012 at 9:15pm
I've already compared it side by side and not only is Apple maps more responsive and faster thanks to it's vector graphics but I was able to see more while being offline than with Google Maps so yes it is better. And now that it's been improved more it shows that Apple is working hard on this and that they kept to their promise.
Kit - October 6, 2012 at 10:33pm
I have, and apart from street view, Apple maps are more up to date, have 3D maps which google maps didn't, turn by turn voice directions, which googles didn't, and vector maps which google didn't. If you want see how to compare, search for theStatue of Liberty in 3D view on iOS 6, then do the same on google earth (equivalent). Full 3D on Apple maps, but google can't do that. The poor lady is flat. Yeah, this is just a minor issue blown out because it's Apple. Nothing more.
Luck - October 5, 2012 at 9:28pm
Apple new map compare to google is like comparing a 1996 Chevy with 2012 BMW 750 .
Luck - October 5, 2012 at 9:29pm
I forgot to mention that's apple will never be able to catch up with google map and I have millions of reason why they can not compete with google
Devon - October 5, 2012 at 11:39pm
Oh really, and why is that?
Detour - October 6, 2012 at 3:13am
Simple fact. Google Map was found and evolved for 10 years. Even paid navi apps use Google Map to provide additional info. eg. Streetview Of course Apple Map will get improve. But by the time, Google Map gets better also. Its like Skullcandy trying to compete with B
Detour - October 6, 2012 at 3:18am
B&O*. both company will offer similar soundings for budget headphones/speakers (if B&O ever make budget ones). But to compete their best sound quality, skullcandy has long long long way to catch up.
Tom - October 5, 2012 at 7:55pm
There must be something more difficult than I appreciate about doing maps programs. Some areas (I am thinking particularly about New Haven, CT), there are problems with every single navigation program that I have ever used. I have used Garmin, Tom Tom, Magellan stand-alone GPSs. I have used Navigon, Tom Tom, Google Maps and even Waze on the iPhone. None of them can successfully navigate around inside New Haven. I haven't tried Apple's 'new maps,' but I expect that I will have the same problems. What gives?
Awdad724 - October 5, 2012 at 6:43pm
I'm sure glad I'm not among the millions of complainers that have problems with the maps. My area is perfect had no problems any place I've went. No competition apple maps are much better then google in my area.
Tim - October 5, 2012 at 7:28pm
:) Hope you keep feeling that way once you take a wrong turn into a lake
Russell - October 5, 2012 at 9:11pm
Millions of complainers? Really? I have seen a handful of complaints. Even Consumer Reports, who has had plenty of negative things to say about Apple products, said that Apple Maps weren't so bad. Not exactly a ringing endorsement, to be sure, but not too bad. Within a year, Apple Maps will completely erase people's memories of Google Maps.
Tim - October 5, 2012 at 11:38pm
As it stands, this lapis sub par. One of my mates can't even get it working, he just sees checkerboard all day long. And yes, I do also wish for mind blowing maps from apple within a year, but only time will tell. So what to do in the mean time? Android break, one year for me I think.
Tim - October 5, 2012 at 6:40pm
Well, they say an incorrect map is as useful as not having a map at all... Once apple fixes the maps, it should be amazing.
Tim Cock - October 5, 2012 at 8:05pm
Good luck with that after 10 years
Tim Tim - October 5, 2012 at 11:24pm
Yeah, suck up with your Google too!!!
Tim - October 5, 2012 at 11:41pm
Well, my name is actually Tim. I really don't like people using 'Tim' to troll and not make sense. Use 'Jimbo' or something.
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