- Panning of maps
- Easy zooming
- Address search that works
- Easy to read
- GPS -support
So I set out on a quest to find something better. Here are the apps I tried:
Here are some letdowns from the above programs:
Maemo-mapper doesn't zoom in for me, when I search for an address. Searching is hit and miss: I can't find the street number for my place of work (but I can find the street). It's one of the big streets in Helsinki and then again, my buddy found his street number "Middleofnowhere street 238" that is significantly smaller and peripheral. Maemo-mapper also has a very cumbersome map respository system that is so far from being user friendly it's ridiculous. The downloadable sample repositories didn't work, becuase the Google links were wrong. Plus it crashed on numerous occasions, due to not being stable.
Map buddy does search. Just not addresses, it appears. Instead, you can look for pizza, but it's US centered, so apparently there isn't a single place to go out for pizza in all of Helsinki. Sigh.
Maep is very good looking, but it lacks search.
The HTML-based alternatives are numerous, including Google's own mobile version (at http://m.google.com/maps). Only, you can't zoom out with it. Any way at all! So much for that. The others are pretty much equally limited, most lacking panning and decent zooming. Here's one of the first efforts: http://tomch.com/maemaps.html
So after this long journey, I came full circle and went back to Ovi Maps. It does all the things I want, except for giving me the same map look I've grown accustomed to in Google maps.
Today I downloaded all of Finland as a map package (from this address) and installed it. It's the easiest thing in the world. If you know what you are doing, installation-instructions are one row:
Unzip the map pack you downloaded to MyDocs/cities/diskcache.
Here are the reasons why Ovi maps kicks everyone's ass right now:
- Searchable with "ajax", meaning it gives me a list of hits as I'm writing the address or place I'm looking for
- Downloadable maps
- 3d-view that is rotatable
- GPS tracking
- Fast zoom alternatives to street, city, country level (etc).