Google highlighted a new feature that’s super handy for anyone who uses above-ground public transportation on a regular basis: turn-by-turn navigation for transit, which helps make sure you never get off at the wrong bus stop. And they’ve just pointed out another great addition that I’ve been yearning for for ages. Say hello to offline maps, thanks to a new feature in labs called Download Map Area, techcrunsh report .
To activate the feature, you’ll first have to visit the Labs section of the Maps application, which you can access using the Menu button. Enable the Download Map Area option, and from then on when you browse to a Place page and hit the ‘More’ button, you’ll see an option to locally store a map of the surrounding area.
It’s a great start, but it’s still clearly a work in progress. You can’t look up transit maps while you’re offline, and you can’t run search queries for venues and addresses that appear in the map areas you’ve downloaded. But these are pretty obvious features, so hopefully they’re in the pipe.