Across many countries in the world, today is officially the day for playing with shiny new things. The relatives have gone home but it’s still a day off work so you can give some serious attention to the goodies you found under the Christmas tree.
Nearly 70 per cent of the phones received as presents last year were Android models, and there’s little reason to doubt that the same will be true for Christmas 2014.
OK – now maybe we’re a little biased, but the most important upgrade you can make to a new Android phone is to install the HERE mapping app.
You can also decide not to take just our words for it. Recently, many online publications, such as The Guardian or The Next Web included HERE among the best Android apps of 2014.
HERE is free, and available right from the Google Play store which will automatically deliver updates as the app progresses over the beta period.
You need reasons?
There are a couple of key advantages to the HERE app that will make it an essential part of your mobile armoury.
The first and most important of these is that our maps can be downloaded to your phone so they can work offline. This has multiple benefits, chief among which are that you can use them anywhere, and they’re really fast to load and responsive in use.
The next big advantage depends on your priorities but check out free voice navigation in 118 countries, no adverts, integrated Glympse and a robust respect for your privacy, for starters.
Darren Orf at Gizmodo says: “Is HERE better or worse than Google Maps? The answer is neither. It's a breath of fresh air, a free app the helps change up the monotony of your single GPS map existence. HERE beta brings a lot of neat extras and could be the perfect navigation app for a lot of people, especially if you find yourself switching among hardware platforms since Here Beta stretches across Android, Windows Phone, and soon iOS. In the end, you're choosing among two excellent choices. One just might edge out the other in a way that matters to you most.”
Get off to a great start
Once you’ve installed, go ahead and create a HERE account either using your email address or a Facebook account. This makes it possible to sync your Collections (categorised bookmarks of places) to any screen you’re using – whether it’s on a desktop PC using the newly refreshed here.com website, your new phone of course, or a car with HERE Auto installed.
From that point, we’ve got a wealth of getting-started guides on HERE 360.
Here’s a general guide to getting started with the interface and performing basic actions.