Navigation applications provide a map of a country which can be viewed on a device like a smartphone. Using an app like that, you can then navigate around your city, country or anywhere in the world. An example of an app like that which you might have heard of is Google Maps. That all sounds great but do they have a use case locally?
I think so. Consider this, how many times has someone asked you for directions to a place? Probably a couple of times if you’re lucky otherwise you’re quite familiar with such experiences. Why do we ask for directions so often? Most of us are constantly on the move and sometimes you can find yourself trying to get to an unfamiliar place. With smartphones in our pockets that we can just install an app for this purpose, should we consider using navigation apps?
One might argue that the apps consume a lot of data so then no-one can use them. That’s very true especially if you’re loading a satellite view of the area you want to navigate around. However, some navigation apps now support the download of maps for offline navigation. This removes the issue of not having data all the time to use the app.
You can just spend some data once and have a map of Zimbabwe or even Africa for free and forever. So what options are out there for people? You can’t talk about navigation apps without mentioning Google maps. It’s the app that most associate mobile navigation with. Other options are Here WeGo and Maps.me.
All these apps provide features like turn by turn navigation, satellite view, 3D view and offline maps access. Offline maps on Google Maps expire after 30 days and need to be updated. This is a good thing if you’d like to constantly have updated versions of a map. However, if you don’t need that, the other two provide offline maps that don’t expire. So far Maps.me has had the lowest download file size for the map of Zimbabwe so you could take a look at that one if you’re looking at using the least data.
Now that we know that they do have a use case and they do provide data friendly options. How many of you use navigation apps? If you do, do you use them offline? Also how frequently? Curious to hear your thoughts.
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