The latest Huawei devices like the P40 Pro are here or coming soon depending on where you live. If you’ve been following the news, you know that these come with Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) instead of Google’s due to U.S. government restrictions. As such, the Google Play Store and other Google apps aren’t pre-installed on Huawei devices, and while they can be, they often don’t work.
When the ban first came into effect, Huawei announced it was working with TomTom to provide a Google Maps alternative. Here we are four months later and a map and navigation app has arrived on Huawei’s AppGallery, and it’s not from TomTom. Instead, HERE WeGo has launched as a free alternative to Google Maps. If it sounds familiar, that’s because HERE also worked with Microsoft on the Maps app for Windows Phones when they were still around. It’s also used by Microsoft in conjunction with TomTom and OpenStreetMap for Bing Maps. The company itself has been tackling mapping since 1985 and is majority-owned by a consortium of German automotive companies so it does have lots of experience under its belt.
The app weighs in at just over 61MB and offers many features Google Map users will be familiar with. These include navigation with turn-by-turn voice guidance for drivers. It also offers walking and cycling directions for those on foot or pedaling their way around. Transit directions are also available as well, but only available in just over 1300 cities at the moment. In addition, offline maps are available for over 100 countries including the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Germany, France, Spain, Italy, and Australia.
One feature I was surprised to see in the app was live traffic. This feature shows where you may be slowed down on your route due to traffic delays. As well, the navigation interface shows your current speed, anticipated arrival time, and your current travel time so far.
Having taken the app for a quick spin, it looks like Huawei has found a suitable navigation and map app for its users. Personally, I’m glad to see this hit the AppGallery (Huawei’s official app distribution platform) as it’s one fewer app users will have to sideload.
Last Updated on February 3, 2021.