Nokia’s Here Maps app hits the App Store

By , Nov 20, 2012

Last week, Nokia’s CEO Stephen Elop told reporters at a San Francisco press conference that Nokia was rebranding their mapping service to Here Maps, and would be releasing a native iOS app for the service within a few weeks.

Today, Nokia has made good on that promise, as its Here Maps app has just been spotted in the App Store. The HTML5-based software includes walking and public transportation directions, and many other features…

Here’s a breakdown of the app’s more notable features:

  • Map views – Pick the map you need from map view, live traffic view, public transport line view or satellite view
  • Save map areas & wander without data coverage
  • In selected countries, access community maps created and updated by users
  • Maps, search and place coverage for nearly 200 countries
  • Search with history and suggestions
  • Share places with just a tap, including the location and how to get there, over SMS, email, or social networks
  • Organize places you love into Collections
  • Sign in to HERE Maps with your Nokia Account or Facebook login
  • Sync with – Access your Collections anywhere
  • Step-by-Step voice-guided walk navigation
  • Walk navigation through pedestrian routes, parks, alleyways, and more
  • Public transportation and driving directions

Other than that, there aren’t many surprises here. As you can see in the above screenshots, the Here Maps UI is not even close to as good as Apple’s. But Nokia does plan to add 3D views and other options in a future update.

I’ve also noticed that mapping tiles in the Here Maps app can sometimes take a while to load, like minutes. Things seemed snappy at first, but when I switched to Satellite View, it seemed to really slow down the tile drawing.

Obviously, though, the big question here in wake of Apple’s Maps struggles is accuracy. How accurate is Nokia’s Maps app in terms of directions and point of interest data? I haven’t used it for navigation yet, but it seems to see all of my local shops and restaurants.

Overall, in my admittedly short time with the app, I’ve found Here Maps to be a bit underwhelming. I haven’t discovered anything that would make me want to switch away from iOS Maps. But then again, I haven’t been having any problems with it either.

But don’t underestimate this move by Nokia. It’s taking advantage of an interesting situation here. Google has yet to publicly make a play for the native iOS mapping space, meaning at the moment, Nokia is offering the best free alternative to Apple’s struggling Maps app. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out.

If you want to try out Nokia’s new Here Maps application for yourself, you can find it in the App Store for free.

Have you tried Nokia’s new iOS maps application? Let us know what you think below!

This article is brought to you by Duet Display, an awesome app that turns your iPhone or iPad into an extra display for your Mac or PC. Get it now in the App Store.

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  • wahaha

    Tried it and it’s very laggy. The directions are very limited. Inaccurate locations. Need inprovement. 2/5 stars

  • Khan Rulzz

    apple maps much much better then this !!!!

    • Joe Jonsen

      apple maps is actually very good for a first try and only 1 year or dev time… imagine how good it will be in 1 more year.. google has 8 years to get their maps where is is today

      • El Barto

        Exactly. You can builder that much in a year and google has thousands of people working on it (so I heard) so imagine if apple puts more money and more people to it.

      • maurid

        Yeah, but Google was one of if not the first to do Maps and had nothing to compare to. But yes, it’s been around for longer.

  • Nemanja Kezic

    @twitter-182768719:disqus yeah needs much more work. I expirienced issues with maps loading, and driving directions are not turn by turn… but the UI look nice, and the app is very responsive. Overall, looks promising. Will keep it in my navigation folder…

  • τƕε̲ βƖπ̵Ɔк Gƕσƨτ

    This app is a big failure !
    Ovi maps are wayyyy better.

  • ReggaeMan

    Thanks Nokia for trying help ios6 users, but i think apple maps is much better and smooth, and some places are much more visible in apple maps! But Google maps is the BEST!

    Guys answer me which is better samsung or apple? Haha lol everyone knows that samsung is ugly oar!!! samsung is company of fridges and they know nothin bout phones!

    • @dongiuj

      Who’s talking about samsung?

    • Liu Zhenyu

      I supported your second part but not your first.

  • jimeeke

    This map is a piece of sh@t. The worst offline cache I have ever seen. You can only cache very small area(few streets) with street details. Or you can cache big area with very bad details(not even street names).
    And you can only cache one map.
    I expected much more from Nokia.

    “Save map areas & wander without data coverage”

  • Nathan Eastwood

    I can’t say I’m a fan of the app. It’s laggy and my home town is just one big blur, Apple Maps trumps it so far…

  • Liu Zhenyu

    This Fucking Sucks!

    • @dongiuj

      Nothing does compared to how much you do AND your comments.

      • Liu Zhenyu


      • @dongiuj


  • Jack Wong

    I think it is not about which one is better.

    My question is – where is the with turn by turn navigation?

    Is it Apple blocking it? No, because there is a FREE one from Nokia.

  • Dani Hayes

    It gave me directions for the street BEHIND my house and my location was shown on my actuall street. But it works semi-fine. I’m still on iOS 5.1.1 so I’m fine with google maps.

  • tggt00

    And I cant download it because its not suported in my country..

  • Terence Ho

    I saw one of Nokia’s Lumia ads saying “With Nokia maps, I never get lost.” Anyone lost when using Nokia maps yet? lol

    • τƕε̲ βƖπ̵Ɔк Gƕσƨτ

      The maps in Nokia devices are wayyyy different from this app.they are incredibly amazing

      • Joe Jonsen

        companies always put crappy versions of their apps on other devices..

  • jdshorrock

    Hahaha! Turrible!

  • Bennett Newsome

    Yeah, this is pretty bad…

  • CollegiateLad

    Wow… Apple’s offering is 10 times better than this. The interface looks like poo poo.

  • Falk M.

    Wrapped HTML5, really?
    Wasn’t Facebook a big enough debacle?

    Anyhow, I appreciate that Nokia is showing effort and dedication here.
    Although the app is subpar and not really that much better than the webapp it’s still a competitor, and we all know what competition does. :)

    • Joe Jonsen

      HTML5 is really just another crappy flash type BS media code set..

      • Falk M.


        It just isn’t for full fledged apps that rely on speed, that’s all.

  • Justin

    I don’t get what’s wrong with Apple Maps. They work way better than Google Maps for me. Nokia Maps seem like last-year’s tech!

    • Jack Wong

      Same here, I think people just like to cry… not like Apple got rid of the with turn by turn navigation…

      I have a co-worker here who also cry for that… and I told her there is a web version of Google map -.-;

    • Joe Jonsen

      if you live in a far away non popular place apple maps is not fully built up yet.. i live in atlanta ga and apple maps is fine but i use google maps and tomtom for the perfect mapping and and navigation experience..

      • Jack Wong

        Do you think the Google map web version is good for now?

        By the way, I though the data is from TomTom also.

  • Joe Jonsen

    so let me see..

    no driving turn by turn… no street view.. no 3D real maps???

    sounds like a complete waste os time..

  • Joe Jonsen


  • Int3nsive

    Nokia… thanks for saving Apple. Now people really knows how a REALLY BAD MAPS APP is….

  • El Barto

    This is garbage. Been playing with it and it sucks. Apple maps is better. Sure google is the gold standard now. But apple is sure to fix the issues and deliver a better product in a few months.

  • Ian Woodward

    This is essentially a link to their web app. HTML 5 apps wrapped in minimal Obj-C code suck for speed and performance. This indicates that most likely this was the only way to get the app approved. Apple have been rejecting apps that break their guidelines for years but if the dev resubmits as essentially a link to a web app it gets approved.. i.e, a number of gambling/betting sites only managed to have their app approved as shells for web apps (in the Jobs era at least. Pokerstars now have a native app for real money poker albeit without the ability to cash in/out within the app)

  • Justin Marshall

    Ugly, ugly, ugly. Terrible layout, ui, and navigation (around the app, not literal map navigation). Not to mention slow. ,maybe it gets better..hopefully.

  • jose castro


  • Jonathan

    purple is not beautiful.

  • Jonathan

    Microsoft’s UI on iPhone looks great, an android/nokia UI looks crap. Typical Nokia*, a lot (read: reasonable) amount of hype, a lot of dissapointment.

    *at least, when it comes to software.

  • Roger Riekki

    Looks horrible.

  • SimonReidy

    Horrendous! The maps are so low resolution I can barely see my city. It lags like a son of a bitch, the offline caching is hopeless and the UI is ugly as sin. I’m struggling to find a single thing to like about it.