All the previous versions of Google Maps require an internet connection in order to navigate with the map data as you go. With the
last Google Maps 5.7, you can do the same thing in offline mode now, previously downloading the entire location of a map and saving
all the data of that map right on your Android phone.
Unfortunately, this useful feature is not activated by default. However, this is reasonable because the main function of a phone
is to make calls.
To download map data for specific locations, you have to tap the "menu" button, then select "More" and then "Labs"… Do you see
that this is not so simple?... Then enable "download map area", long press on the map around the area you want save, tap on the
bubble and select "Download map area". Google Maps will download the map on your Android. The downloaded and outlined map area will
be within 10 miles of the selected location, as shown below.
It's better, of course, to manipulate with WiFi connection to download map data for a couple minutes.
You can navigate with the downloaded map offline during 30 days. Then the map will be automatically deleted. This period of time
is supposed to be enough to entirely finish your navigation with the map, and then it will be not needed.
There is no searching function for maps offline in this application. The number of the stored maps is supposed to be not very
large in your Android. So you can find the needed map for your navigation without a special searching function.
Another useful feature of Google Maps 5.7 - Transit Navigation uses GPS to determine your current location along your route and
alerts you when it's time to get off or make a transfer from their train or bus. The tool works best for above-ground transit because
of using GPS.
Google noted Transit Navigation is especially useful for folks visiting foreign cities, where they might not speak the same
language and can't read the local route maps or understand the announcements. After starting your travel with Transit Navigation, you
can open another application or put your phone away entirely and Google Maps will still display an alert in your notification bar and
vibrate your Android phone when your stop is coming up.