Unofficial Google Maps app gMaps bumped for Windows Phone 8 support
Although we know many of you are diehard Bing fans and loathe anything by Google, we won’t look down upon you at all if you so occasionally choose to flirt with Google Maps on Windows Phone. While Google has infamously declared they have no plans for any official Windows Phone apps, developer Alexey Strakh has been working on his clone, gMaps, for quite some time now on Windows Phone.
Version 2.0 for the Pro version went live at the beginning of January and now its free sibling also just received a nice bump, including some Windows Phone 8 support. Although no changelog is posted, we can tell you that for Windows Phone 8 it does now support a doublewide Tile in addition to the smaller Tile...
gMaps also has the super important fast-resume function, meaning the app won’t re-launch when you tap the Tile again but instead will resume from where you last left it. That’s crucial for mapping apps as presumably it is something you’ll hop in and out of frequently.
The app itself also benefits from new Windows Phone 8 programming as it seems quite fast and efficient on our Lumia 920. Of course users on 7.x can also use version 2.0 on their phones
We don’t think we’d shock you if we mentioned that gMaps features just about everything Google offers in their official apps and is probably better than what they could do, right? Third party developers have always gone above and beyond what a lot of official sources tend to offer and that’s the case here.
gMaps offers your location, map layers (including traffic and weather), your speed, compass support, driving directions, location discovery, Google Latitude, Street View, Share, Route to Contact, Night Mode and Live Tiles, to just name a few. It basically has the whole Google kitchen sink thrown into a nice little app.
The app comes in two flavors, both updated to 2.0: there’s the free, ad-supported one, which can be found here or the ad-free Pro version here for $1.99. All Windows Phone versions are supported.
If Google Maps is your thing, there really is no other choice.
Via: Windows Phone Italy
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Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, 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 for some reason, watches. 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.
By Jez Corden
That said, I am a happy owner of a Lumia 920 and really enjoy Nokia and their other apps. Just very disappointed in their Maps... very disappointed.
I'm in the middle of a string of tweets right now. Help put the pressure on them!
I personally don't see the benefits of being a fanboy/gal and stick with just that one company all the way. I'm not sure if that mindset is helpful. We as consumers should be able to pick and choose whatever products we feel most benefited from, regardless of whom develops the apps, tablets or laptops.
Trust me, I am trying to get this through to them that they NEED to update their POI database. I just wish I didn't feel like they're ignoring me on this and that there was more pressure from the community on Nokia directly to improve their POI database ASAP.
But now, nothing google is to enter my beautiful yellow Nokia Lumia 920 Windows Phone 8
gMaps Pro frequently stops background updating of your location. The new version will supposedly allow them to resolve most Latitude problem without having to release a new version of the app. This was just demonstrated a couple of days ago when they were able to get Latitude working again within two days.
A rock solid app for background updating of Latitude is "Latitude Auto-Update" That is ALL that app does though. It does not show the location of your Latitude friends. Tried using the new version of gMaps Pro for background updating but am going back to the Latitude Auto-Update and turning off background updating in gMaps.
I hope that one day Google decides to release Latitude for Windows Phone but until then we have a good (not great) solution with gMaps.
3 months today, and I feel good :D
Nokia maps, Skydrive, Office, Outlook.com are FAR better (but I use metrotube...C'mon Microsoft by Vimeo !!!)
Until there's a Latitude feature useful via WP8, I'll continue to use this great gMaps Pro app.
Also, G+ sucks donkey balls
However, I honestly believe nothing is better than Nokia Drive. That is an A+ app for navigation. Unfortunately as it's been pointed out before roads that have existed for years are not shown in current Nokia maps. I have had some good POI listed on Nokia, but I have had it fail with accurate positioning several times when the location I was looking for was 5-6 blocks down the street.
Try Social Scout app
The mere fact that MS or Nokia made something does not make it good, and neither does that product being the only one available make it actually acceptable. It's still subject to the same judgement and criticisms as everything else, and you need to call out whoever made it if it's sub-par. As soon as you lap up whatever Nokia/MS/HTC/etc gives you and call it awesome regardless of its real value, you've become one of them... One of those poor lost souls that cant think for themselves.
We dont need any more of those people. Keep the standards high because we're the little engine that could in about every way.