HERE Maps is one of the exclusive addition when Windows Phone 7 came out. They provided exclusive mapping and voice guided navigation along with offline maps support. They supported Windows Phone 8 and 8.1. Later, when Microsoft acquired Nokia, HERE team moved out of Nokia and they started developing HERE suite of mapping apps for iOS and Android slowly stopping it’s support for Windows Phone.
Today, HERE announces that it is dropping support for Windows 10 Mobile !
Although the essence of the HERE apps lives on in the Windows Maps app, we are removing the HERE branded apps from the Windows 10 store on March 29, 2016 and will limit the development of the apps for Windows Phone 8 to critical bug fixes.
In the last few months, they made the HERE apps compatible with Windows 10 by using a workaround that will no longer be effective after June 30, 2016. To continue offering the HERE apps for Windows 10 would require them to redevelop the apps from the ground up, a scenario that led to the business decision to remove HERE apps from the Windows 10 store.
This means the HERE apps will no longer work on devices running Windows 10 mobile after June 30, 2016. To prepare for this change, they have also decided to remove the HERE apps from the Windows 10 store on March 29, 2016.
HERE is deeply integrated in the Windows Phone 8 operating system. The HERE apps for Windows Phone 8 will continue to work for you without any disruption. However, HERE team made the business decision to stop the development of new features. Additionally, the maps developed specifically for Windows Phone will not be updated.
For maps, routes and navigation, HERE recommend using the preinstalled Windows Maps application. The Windows Maps app contains many HERE elements since Microsoft has developed it using the HERE Platform.
What’s there for us in Windows Maps ???
Compared to Windows Phone 8.1 HERE apps, Windows 10 Mobile brought a huge improvement and lot of features in Windows Maps. So, here are features that come with Windows Maps that will definitely replace the need of HERE apps.
- Maps can be downloaded offline like in Windows Phone 8.1, and you can do it on mobile data as well. The restriction to download it only over WIFI has been dropped.
- Also, you can now save Offline Maps in phone memory or SD card.
- Supports Day and Night Mode.
- Speed Limit Warning which you can manually change.
- You can set preferred direction mode i.e. Walk, Bus or Car.
- Lane guidance in turn-by-turn navigation.
- Pin Work and Home locations to Start for one-tap directions to these two locations from wherever you are.
- Streams live footage from select traffic cameras. It’s available only for selected locations like North America.
- The best part of using the new map is you don’t need two separate apps now. It can be used for Maps and Turn by Turn direction on the move which makes more sense now.
- Once the app is loaded, it shows current location along with nearby streets and landmarks. On the right you have a transparent pane which helps you go 3D, Find current location
- Supports Aerial or Road view, show traffic and incidents, and lastly you can turn on street side. The hamburger on top left, gives you access to Search, Directions, Favourites and 3D Settings.
Long Live Microsoft’s Windows Maps !!!