Today Google has announced that very soon Android devices will have offline access to Google Maps. They also mentioned that Google Earth is to get an impressive fly-by 3D view mode.
Android users have been able to cache Maps for offline use for a while now – but these have been limited to 10 square miles. In an upcoming update users will be able to cache as many maps as they please. Google were tight-lipped on any other details such as whether offline navigation will be possible.
According to rumours iOS 6 is meant to mean a move away from Google Maps to its own service so perhaps Google are waiting to see if Apple offer their own offline navigation service free of charge or not. Expect full details on Google Maps offline at the I/O developers conference in the last week of this month.[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N6Douyfa7l8′]
Also announced was the fly-by 3D view mode for Google Earth which is to include full 3D models of metropolitan areas. The imagery has been captured by dedicated airplanes flying over places of interest and if you ask me it looks like something straight out of SimCity.
KitGuru says: Offering extras for free is one thing we're not going to complain about.