Offline Google Maps: what to do when downloading hangs

This was my first work phone (nominally also a smart phone, but practically -- not very usable as such). That is not my hand.  I got the image from here.

The Nokia E50 from 2006: nominally also a smart phone, but practically — not very usable as such. That is not my hand. I got the image from here.

I finally got a new phone for the first time since 2006 this month. It’s my first smart phone for work (I’ve used other portable devices — iPod touch, Nokia E61i, Palm Treo, Handspring Visor + Visorphone) on my own dime, and my first foray into the Android operating system. It’s got two SIM card slots, which makes it particularly convenient for both work and personal use. With that in mind, I was pleased when I read about Google Maps for Android becoming available offline — so you can see your position on map tiles downloaded in advance without using a roaming data connection, which is very expensive.

It kinda worked, but seemingly intermittently. I spent a couple hours googling, checking the list of countries available for offline downloading (which you can find here) before I hit upon this cause-effect-solution someone posted here:

  1. connecting the phone to a computer with a cable seems to break Offline Maps functionality — downloading maps hangs and queued tasks (like deletion of existing offline maps) never complete
  2. simply rebooting the phone after connecting the phone via cable to the computer seems to clear up the problem: you can resume downloading those maps and the queued tasks finally complete!

It’s not optimal, of course. But I am glad someone else found this partial work-around. It should make for some progress in my quest to further reduce the amount of stuff I schlep around while traveling.

One thought on “Offline Google Maps: what to do when downloading hangs”

  1. [...] than a handful of hours to kill at Munich airport. I figured it couldn’t hurt to put some maps on my phone for offline use to track my progress across the country if I get bored on the way up from Bucharest. That was a [...]

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