Our smartphones and tablets are some awesome devices, but many of their features rely on the Internet, and you have to be always connected to make use of them. And it’s very annoying to not be able to rely on Google Maps, for example, when your data plan has come to an end. And while there are ways to use it offline, the app didn’t support the offline feature completely, not until today.
Jen Fitzpatrick, Google’s VP for Engineering and Product Management, has taken the stage at the Google I/O 2015 keynote presentation to announce two major updates to Google Maps and YouTube. The first of them is offline search in the Maps application along with offline turn-by-turn voice navigation instructions. This is great news, indeed, and now you will be able to rely on Google Maps even when you will be out of rage or out of data.
YouTube is also getting an offline option but it’s available only in India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam. By making use of it, users will be able to download and keep YouTube videos on their device for up to 48 hours. The Google Maps offline mode is expected to launch later this year, but Google didn’t say whether it will be exclusive to certain territories such as in YouTube’s case. The YouTube Offline feature will be available on all Android devices which are running at least KitKat.
Furthermore, Google also announced that it is optimizing data usage in its Chrome web browser as well, saying it can now reduce data consumption by as much as 80 percent. This is perhaps a move meant to counterattack Opera’s popular Max service.