OsmAnd Maps & Navigation is one of the best navigation apps available on the Android platform. The app provides quality services without forcing you to pay for them. I have recently reviewed another great offline navigation app for Android called Sygic Navigation and while it is also an amazing app, it is basically a free trial. OsmAnd Maps & Navigation App is not free from pay walls though but thankfully they are very lenient. If you are going to use a free offline navigation app for Android and only use it for one country, you should check this review out.
I have previously stated that I’m not a big fan of navigation app, probably because I have spent my life in on city. But OsmAnd Maps & Navigation App is an app which makes it easy navigators. I ride a bike and this app sends direct directions to my ear via hands free. This is an awesome setup which allows complete freedom with great navigational utilities.
Our Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Stars
Google Play Rating: 4.2 out of 5 Stars
The Free Version
The Paid Version
The Free version of the app comes with only 10 download, of which, one is a mandatory base map. This means you will need to purchase the pro version which comes at $5.99 or simply manage the number of things you download cunningly. If you ask me, this app is adequate, if you only want to navigate in your country. If you are traveling abroad, it can still work if you don’t squander the downloads on unnecessary files. 10 downloads potentially mean at least 6 full countries can be downloaded with ease.
OsmAnd Maps & Navigation App provides great navigational features which can be accessed both online and offline. The app downloads the maps, so you will get optimal performance with minimum data usage. Many apps are not so amazing when used without an active internet connection, but OsmAnd Maps & Navigation App never stutters or lags. In fact I noticed that the offline performance was much better than online one, but that might just be me.
The maps take a lot of time to download. I mean their size is small but they still take a ton of time. I went to sleep while downloading the base map and when I woke up the download was magically zero. I downloaded it again and it took an astonishing 6 hours to download a 130MB of map data. And then the app took another half an hour to download my country map. Disgusted I thought maybe my smartphone is not playing well with the app. So I downloaded it again at university on my tablet, it took 5 hours there too.
The Bottom Line
OsmAnd Maps & Navigation App is a great offline maps app for Android and it works like a charm. The features are robust and the navigation is top notch. The only problem is that you should download it well before you might need it. The app takes a ton of time to download; well at least it did for me. So I recommend an overnight download for you, and don’t forget to check if the app is downloading the maps or not.
Booting the Maps – 1 Out of 5 Stars
Installing the app is pretty much a standard affair. Download the app from the Google Play Store and tap on the icon once it is installed. After that the app will take you to a grim looking interface urging you to download some maps before even seeing the main interface.
This is a bit confusing, if you are not that tech savvy or lack the long term exposure garnered by veteran app users. In short, this app will probably confuse your grandma (if she is like mine, only have limited experience).
Once you select the base map and the country you want to use the app for, the app will start an excruciatingly slow process of downloading. I recommend watching a long movie, thrice while the app downloads mere 130 MB of data. This is baffling and downright ridiculous. I have taken multiple screenshots at different intervals of time just to prove that this app takes ages to download the maps.
The Interface – 4 Out of 5 Stars
Once the tedious process of downloading the maps is over, you are treated with an amazing looking interface. The main screen shows four clear options of, Map, search, My places and Settings.
If you want to use the navigation features of the app, the Map button is the one you should push. If you are looking for a particular place and have the address, the search function will come in handy. The My Places button is only fully usable if you have already established your home and other places like office or work. Settings are for adjusting the app just the way you like.
The Map – 4 Out of 5 Stars
The map is adequately detailed and provides enough information for you to navigate with ease. It is not as flushed out as other navigation apps for Android but considering the robust offline capabilities, it’s a fair trade off. There are no little landmarks marked on the map but it is highly accurate and works well even on a low spec smartphone.
The functions are all intuitive as well. Long press a point on the map and the app will pop up an address. Tap on that and you can select the navigation options. There are options of getting directions to any place or from any place. You can long press a location to make it an easy destination. One of the best things is that you can easily share a particular location with just few taps.
The Navigation – 4 Out of 5 Stars
Navigation on OsmAnd Maps & Navigation App is top notch. It easily rivals another top tier app I reviewed recently. The best part is that the app calculates optimal routes even if it is offline. Sure it won’t be able to take in current factors if it is kept offline for a long while but still the selected paths are usually the best.
The app knows if there are any problems in your way and recommends alternate routes. Alternatively you can check factors which allows the app to recommend a way which best suits your own needs. For example if you want to avoid toll roads, you can simply tick that option and OsmAnd Maps & Navigation will find you an alternate route.
Permissions – 5 Out of 5 Stars
The app only needs to get your position. This is understandable because the app needs to know where you are before recommending a navigation path. No additional information is taken from your Android device which makes this app a great one to have if you value security.
OsmAnd Maps & Navigation brings a lot of great features to the already wonderful collection of navigation apps. The app doesn’t hide important features behind a pay wall and it doesn’t force you to purchase anything either. This app is simply the best offline navigation app for Android if you are going to use it within your country. All in all, I highly recommend this app to anyone who requires a quality offline navigation app for Android.