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Nokia releasing HERE Maps for all Windows 8.1 tablets and PCs in coming days

Back a few months ago, Nokia entered the hyper competitive tablet market with the Lumia 2520 (review), a Windows RT device that has received a lot of high praise, even if limited availability. That device also had some exclusive software on board, including a full HERE Maps suite.

Today, Nokia has announced that a new and improved version of HERE Maps is coming to all Windows 8.1 devices over the coming days. HERE Maps have always been really fun to use, but with the syncing ability between Lumias phones and HERE Maps on a PC, it should take it to the next level.

The news was announced on the HERE blog Three-Sixty. New features for this universal updated version include:

  • Speed – “The offline maps load as quickly as your computer can manage, of course, so it’s a lot faster than using a website for navigation. But there are also speed improvements to the online portions.”
  • Mouse + keyboard support for traditional PC users, in addition to the continued support of touch displays
  • Latest high-resolution satellite imagery

HERE Maps currently offers vector, satellite and 3D maps, points of interest, search and route planning.  Users can also optionally download maps for offline use, similar to how Windows Phone currently handle HERE Maps as well.

Nokia confirms that RT devices, like the Surface 2, and ‘Pro devices’, like any PC or x86 hybrid, will support the re-launched HERE Maps for 8.1. We’ll keep you posted when the app goes live in the Windows Store.

Source: Three Sixty; Thanks, Sarang D., for the tip

Daniel Rubino
Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Executive Editor of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft here since 2007, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and arguing with people on the internet.

94 Comments
  • Oh Nokia! These guys don't sleep
  • +920
  • Awesome!
  • Moar the awesome.
  • Cool!
  • Awesome! can't wait
  • That's great! Having offline maps will be cool for my Dell Venue 8 Pro thingy. Especially for road trips. No more stacks of Street Atlas USA disks for me, no sir.
  • I'd love to have offline maps on my DVP8 as well, but not until I can store them on my SD card. And unless im mistaken, you still can't store metro apps on other drives, right?
  • You can't install to SD cards in Windows 8.1 but apps can (I think) still save to and open files on the SD card. You can't install HERE on an SD card in windows phone, but maps can. If it isn't a feature at launch, I bet it will be soon after.
  • I think since the next iteration of Windows phone will be able to save to a SD card, it would only make sense to adapt for Windows 8.1 as well. It would make my DVP8 alot more useful (since I opted for the smaller storage).
  • Best $50 I've spent, getting the upgraded 64gb
  • How well will it work on the DV8P (which lacks a GPS reciever)?  Will it triangulate using visible Wi-Fi points?
  • I'm wondering if it's gonna be paid version for the non Lumia devices
  • "Today we’re delighted to announce that the HERE Maps application for Windows 8.1, currently only available on the Nokia Lumia 2520, will soon be available forall Windows 8.1 devices, including laptops, desktops and tablets. Both Windows RT and Pro devices will be supported. The app will be free and available from the Windows Store."
  • Hopefully they will keep it updated since the bing maps have not been updated for 3 years now!
  • Well at least Bing maps use's here map data
  • Oh well. There goes my hope!
  • There's the thing called Bing Maps Preview which obviously is a newer and updated version of Bing maps. Stop being dramatic.
  • I would have easily done that. But for a slight hitch. Its not available here
  • You need to get Bing maps preview
  • ^This is awesome
  • I don't think he's worried about the app itself, but the data behind it: roads and places not updated
  • Exactly. Data has not been updated at all. Right besides where i stay a 13 storeyed building is almost complete. Construction has been going for 3 years but still nothing on the map.
  • Oh yeah!
  • What's the business case ??
  • Here are trying to become the embedded mapping platform across multiple different industries....but in particular, embedded car tech systems. The more people using the maps, the more likely other people/companies will be in buying into the platform.
    Also, more people doing unique searches allows for a more refined experience...and also allows the Here team to focus their resources on the search requests that are most often asked.
    Makes a lot of sense to me. Certainly helps overcome the Google monopoly (offline maps are a HUGE selling point for me!)
  • This is what I was hoping for when I was on the edge between the Surface 2 and the 2520. Turns out I bet correctly.
  • I kind of wish my Surface 2 had a GPS right about now. Glad to have it for all 8.1 devices though.
  • Does Surface 2 support GPS?
  • None of the Surfaces contain a GPS chip. Any geolocating that they do is an estimation based on your internet connection. I expect that this will change with the release of the Surface 2 that contains LTE. I hope that they wisen up and add that to the Surface Pro 2 as well (both LTE and GPS).
  • 2520 Baby!
  • Problem is, that 2520 did not released worldwide yet :/
  • Sorry to be a negative Nancy, but maps is one area where im getting kind of tired of waiting for Windows to catch up to Google on. In the google world you have google maps across web and all your devices, tied to the same google account, period. In the MS world you have Bing maps on web and W8, HERE on phone and now W8. But will I need a separate Nokia login to sync favorites on HERE? This is 2014 and its about time users and devs have one single map solution to target for all windows devices and web, without requiring some Nokia account I'll never use anywhere else.
  • All that is probably more attributed to MS knowing they were eventually going to fully implement HERE maps.
  • You can use your Microsoft account to sign on and google doesn't have any windows apps.
  • Can you? When I tried to set up syncing of favorites on HERE drive/maps on my phone I was prompted to make a damn Nokia account. And I know for sure my Drive favorites aren't available on Bing maps. And HERE apps aren't on android (or maybe they are, I don't know). My point is I want for the windows world what google users already have in the google world: a single mapping solution for devs and users across their devices.
  • Web: here.com
    Phone: HERE Maps
    Computer/tablet: HERE Maps
    Login: Microsoft account Maybe it's just me, but with this app for windows, I have a unified experience. All my collections are synced and I can always access offline. Offline alone it's better, and accessibility is equal to me.
  • Okay well if you can log into here with ms account then that is news to me. I admit I haven't tried that since I first setup Nokia Drive/Maps after initial WP8 release.
  • Honestly, I am more tired of HERE maps; I think Microsoft made the right decision by not purchasing that part of Nokia. I have been a huge Nokia proponent since they joined the WP race (as an owner of a Luma 800, 900, 920, 520, 521, 720, 820, and 1020 between my fiancee and I), but HERE maps have consistently been the most disappointing feature. For starters, they have regularly sent me to the wrong place in locations where I do not know any better. When my fiancee was trying to take her dying car to sell to the dealership, HERE maps took us to the wrong end of a street that stretches across the entire city, thus costing us 30 minutes and running time on a car that couldn't afford it. Coming home from a vacation, I needed to get some gas and pick up some dog food, so I decided to kill two birds with one stone by stopping at a PetSmart/Petco along the way, which is generally going to be near a gas station. Unfortunately, HERE maps took me to a residential area with no PetSmart/Petco, and risked me running out of gas as I frantically searched for a gas station (fortunately I wasn't too low, but it was a rental and the gas light had already come on, so I had no idea how much longer I had). Plus, the traffic support is weak at best. I have never gotten a suggestion to avoid traffic, which would be fine if I did not end up avoiding some nasty traffic myself using non-residential routes (thus, it should have suggested them) in areas that I do know. I am also fairly convinced that if you open up HERE Maps to begin navigation (thus using HERE Drive[+]), then it draws around twice as much power because it does not actually close HERE Maps, until you manually close it yourself. Finally, it destroys battery life and makes the phone(s) suspiciously hot. I recognize that GPS is a battery hungry technology, but Apple seems to handle it fine (their software aside, which appears to suffer from similar issues as HERE). I only use GPS when I do not know an area or I want it to help me to dodge traffic, but I cannot trust HERE maps enough to use them, and when I do my battery runs dead too fast to be useful (and, to make matters worse, standard USB plugs in cars usually charge the phone slower than it uses power, so you need a power adapter to keep up with GPS drain). Anyway, I was so fed up with it after my fiancee potentially getting burned that I have completely stopped using it except when I have no other options, and we got a car that has built in GPS. I had always thought that built-in navigation systems would be useless, but it has been far better than HERE maps so far and it regularly offers accurate traffic suggestions. My only now is fear is it becoming outdated.
  • What kind of car did you buy?
  • Hyundai Elantra. For what it's worth, I love it.
  • That's great criticism. You should submit this feedback on Here.com
  • Daniel,
    can u tell me is that wp8.1 come with wifi direct support or not?
  • Yes
  • So what about Drive for RT?
  • Yup, my wish as well. I would love to have Here Drive in addition to Here Maps on my 2520. With the large screen, I could see a split screen with drive on one side and maps on the other..turn by turn directions on a zoomed in map one side, and a full map on the other showing your progress on a trip...of course then I guess I would want a car charger as well....Maps on all devices is great, but having the GPS in the 2520 does give it a leg over most tablets that do not have GPS, at least for mapping software.
  • I love that split screen idea
  • I was hoping this was coming.
  • But no first Gen rt? Lol. Way of the dodo I suppose.
  • If it's for RT, then it would work on any RT device. Just because they didn't mention the original Surface RT doesn't mean you have to turn off your brain and criticize.
  • Lol criticism is best when you own the product. Which I do. It would be nice but at the same time I'm not holding my breath. Many first Gen items get dropped for support all over the place. I'm not upset hence th dodo fun reference. Relax dude. But if it does come ill definitely be putting it to use!
  • The headline reads "Nokia releasing HERE Maps for all Windows 8.1 tablets and PCs in coming days", so the first gen should get it too...
  • Well I know but one could argue full 8.1 until read at bottom of article where first Gen rt was left out. Why couldn't they just say surface rt? Instead of the second Gen? Either way it is what it is. Its comes or it doesn't.
  • Left out? They made an example. And usually making an example does not include to list all possibilities. Or are you going to say that my Asus UX31A does not get it because it is not mentioned? Don't think so.
  • Why are people arguing? I'm not. Just saying example could have had first Gen not second. Either way is fine with me sheese.
  • And we are going to see it soon :-)
  • I hope we do. Be pretty badass.
  • Go Nokia now only if I can get mixradio on my HTC 8X.
  • And if only I could get the HTC clock/weather hub on my Nokia....
  • Yeah its pretty great.
  • Hey dude,if u want a better substitute then use audiotica 4
  • Storyteller next!
  • Sweet!!
  • Good! Now bring storyteller to ALL windows 8.1 devices too.
  • Can't wait, give It to me now......;-)
  • That's awesome !!
  • Hold up Nokiasoft, you are moving too fast!
  • Nokia maps saved me today. Simply accurate after updates...
  • Awesome!!! Just in time for the Surface RT 2 with LTE to get released!!!!
  • Haven't used heremaps since waze came out.
  • Just missing that the map's getting a bit more detailed in satellite view. As for now it's horrible...
  • So. Much. Win.
  • Sounds great, well, just so long as map data can be saved to the SD card like on the phones.
  • Well on my 920 I downloaded offline maps. I went to Thailand and GPS won't work to find current location until I have put local SIM card with data on it.. The offline map concept without data is bullshit to me. One sad experience with here maps.
  • Even with the "online" setting in the app set to off?
  • Well something is wrong with your device or setup. I have the L920 (two of them actually). Went on cruise to Mediterranean. My 920 tracked me everywhere on the oceans and seas. I downloaded maps for all the cities we toured and surprisingly worked flawlessly if you have a good view of the sky. GPS lock was problematic only when in a city with tall buildings or narrow aisleways. The 920 outperformed my brother's handheld Garmin even. BTW, I took out my ATT sim when we got on the boat to avoid roaming charges and wifi is turned off. As a side, I put in an Italy sim when we docked there so my whole iphone family shared my internet connection. Best utility smartphone I've had, and i've been using smartphones a long time.
  • Same here, downloaded Italy map in UK and used offline in Italy. Accurately took me to the places I needed.   Lumia 920
  • Great, but how will this help me and my Asus Vivotab Smart (windows 8.1) that has "gps" but no one has been able to access it for any use yet (not Nokias fault). It would be great to have offline maps and be able to to all the neat stuff i do on my 920. However, in my case, why doesnt MS or Asus get together and get the gps working!?  
  • Can we get a turn list on HERE Drive for WP... Pleeeease. Lol. But seriously, this is nice to have. Wish the Surface Pro had a GPS chip. Any USB dongles that can be used?
  • If anyone lives in the north east of England, i have a question for you: does here maps work for you? Because all i get is a blur
  • Use Nokia maps a lot. I'm in the Midlands and have been to Heathrow Airport, London, Selby etc. Never had a major problem on L920. Sometimes I have had the slightly wrong location given i.e. when using Bing to search and then select maps, the business had moved to a location around the corner. Just asked someone local and they pointed me in the right direction. Guess it would be hard to keep track of very business moving in every country covered.
  • That's where cloud sourcing is useful, but Nokia seems averse to letting regular people help out with their maps. They promised later this year, but it's already been way too long
  • When I heard about the 2520 having offline HERE maps, I hoped it would eventually arrive to win8 devices. The offline maps works flawlessly on my L920. I got a Thinkpad Tablet 2, one of the few that has a GPS chip without a cell radio. The GPS works but without offline maps, kinda useless without an internet connection. I am so stoked about this! Another feature to get the other OSes jealous!
  • Here maps in the uk is woeful, really very very bad, almost put me off upgrading to wp8, satellite data is practically non existant
    Shame they can't just use bing data for the uk
  • One of many things I miss fom my iPhone is Google Maps. HERE is a lot worse than Google's service. Whenever  want to find something, Here says it can't find it or shows me wrong place. With Google Maps I didn't have this problem. What's more HERE is just ugly - I'm talking about the colours used on the maps. I prefer Google's brighter colours.
  • Even though I don't own any Nokia products, I love their dedication. Thank you NOKIA!
  • Good news! Thanks Nokia!
  • Yes! That's great news.
  • Sweet, now I'm leaning more to the surface 2 with lte if it has wacom support with an active digitiser + plus sp2 stylus I'm golden.
  • Very glad I opted for the Toshiba Encore which has a GPS.
  • Just what my Surface 2 needed!
  • I'm more keen to see the Bing Maps preview app go out of Beta and hit Windows Phone. Those 3D images and rotating the map around with two fingers is awesome.
  • These guys are my travelling heroes! I have offline maps on my phone...offline curated playlists, an amazing camera (1020) - and now offline Here Mapping for my Asus T100. I will no longer have to seek out a WiFi connection in order to plan the next part of my cycle tours. Nokia - what a company!
    I just hope the offline mapping can be saved to SD card. My T100 has so little space built in :(
  • WHERE'S THE LINK ? IT WAS JUST THERE I SWEAR ! BUT WHERE DID IT GO ?