PSA – Check your offline maps on Windows Phone 8 for new updates (Updated)

If you use Windows Phone 8, there’s a really good chance you use Maps (or HERE Maps, if on a Lumia). Hopefully you have also taken advantage of the offline map ability, which allows you to download regional or state maps to your phone for faster access – and no data charges.

We had a tip from Antonio that his offline map data had an update, so we did a roll call on our team to check ourselves. From Alabama, to the UK, to New York, to the UAE, India, Spain and even Florida, we all had offline map data awaiting to be downloaded. (To clarify, this is not the app that has been updated, just map data).

We’re not entirely sure when those updated maps went out, as some of you may have had it for a few days already. Windows Phone should periodically check, specifically when you open Maps or HERE Maps. But if not, here are the steps to force-check it:

Maps (HTC, Samsung, Huawei)

  • Tap '...' at the bottom of the Microsoft Maps app
  • Settings
  • Check for Updates
  • Install

HERE Maps (Lumias, anyone who uses HERE)

  • Tap '...' at the bottom of the HERE Maps app
  • Download maps
  • Update current maps
  • Install

You can also go into the Windows Phone settings:

  • Settings
  • Applications (swipe right)
  • Maps
  • Check for updates

The process should take only a few seconds, depending on how much offline data you have.

It’s not clear what changes are on board, but we’re pinging Pino Bonetti of the HERE Team for more details. If we get any info, look for an update in this article! In the meantime, sound off below on your location and any updates!

Update: We heard back from Pino on the HERE Team about what's happening in the updates. Here's shared with us some highlights on what's going on with the updates to HERE. 

  • Algeria, Benin, Georgia, Guinea, Mali, Nicaragua, Niger, Saint Helena and Togo have more detail
  • House numbers introduced in seven European countries, Australia, and New Zealand
  • Dramatically extended woodland coverage in Europe
  • Hindi support for India's map

Those sound like some pretty baller updates. He also teased one more surprise, but one that he can't share until Monday. It'll be up on the HERE blog. We'll of course share the information once we all learn. Notice any of the changes in your updated maps? Sound off below. Thanks for again for the update Pino!

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central. He is also the head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007, when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and watches. He has been reviewing laptops since 2015 and is particularly fond of 2-in-1 convertibles, ARM processors, new form factors, and thin-and-light PCs. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.