Two weeks ago, Andy Rubin showed off Google Maps 5.0 for Android at the D:Dive into Mobile conference. Today, Google has announced that Google Maps 5.0 for Android with 3D capabilities and offline features is now available for download.
Maps 5.0 supports 3D interaction by use vector graphics to dynamically draw the map on your device as you use it, allowing you to interact with it in new ways. When navigating you can now tilt, rotate, and zoom to view buildings in 3D. Compass mode will now be able to direct you in a better manner with the buildings in 3D.
Another feature that was long awaited by most Google enthusiasts was offline capabilities. Google Maps 5.0 will now start caching the areas you visit the most when your device is plugged in and connected to WiFi so you can navigate better even without an internet connection. Google Maps Navigation will support offline rerouting in the upcoming weeks which means that even if you lose the internet connection, Google would put you back in the right direction by rerouting offline.
“These new features are just the first steps in maximizing dynamic map drawing technology to create a faster, more interactive experience where efficiency really matters: mobile devices. For example, we estimate that viewing maps now requires almost 70% less mobile network data overall than before. We can’t wait to take the next steps in making Google Maps faster, more reliable and even more useful no matter where you take it.”, said Michael Siliski, Product Manager at Google in a blog post.
Google Maps 5.0 will be available for Android 1.6+, but 3D and offline features require Android 2.0+. You can get it from the Android market or from here.