Nokia today announced a major update to their Nokia Maps navigation software, adding multimedia city guides and satellite image downloads while reworking pedestrian navigation and the overall UI. Nokia Maps 2.0, currently available for some devices as a beta download and preinstalled on most of the new handsets the Finnish company has announced today, will have new Walk and Drive modes, the latter providing in-car voice and on-screen prompts, while the former guides pedestrians with visual turn-by-turn indicators, information about surrounding landmarks and buildings, and even shortcuts such as paths through parks. In compatible handsets (such as the 6210 Navigator, shown here), a digital compass keeps the map facing in the direction the user is walking.
Although supplied with local mapping data, additional maps will be available to purchase from the maps.nokia.com online store; in addition, multimedia city guides – containing photos, video and audio streams – from companies such as Berlitz will be available directly from the handset itself. Maps for over 200 countries are available, although only around 70 of which can be used for A-to-B navigation; Nokia also offer Metro guidance in 17 cities and, for an optional fee, real-time traffic information for 18 European countries complete with dynamic re-routing if a jam is ahead.
The software is compatible both with GPS-enabled phones and phones that use an external (possibly Bluetooth) GPS device. Series 40 handsets will also soon be supported, as Nokia intend a S40 version for release during the first half of 2008.