Nokia launches Drive+ app beta for all WP8 phones

Nokia has not only released a number of Windows Phone-based smartphones under the Lumia brand, it has also developed a number of Windows Phone apps made especially for those Lumia products. One of them was Drive+, a turn-by-turn navigation app.

Today, Microsoft announced that the free Drive+ app is now available for all Windows Phone 8 devices, regardless of the company that makes the phones, in the US, Canada and the UK. While the app is now available for download in the Windows Phone Store, it's still considered to be in a beta state.

The app gives users voice-guided turn-by-turn navigation, with offline support, in 89 countries around the world, and there are over 60 different voice guidance packs available for download for use in the app. It contains landmarks in the map to better guide its users and includes settings that will let users avoid toll roads, railroad crossings and other such obstacles.

This is certainly one of the best free apps ever made for Windows Phone so it's cool that Nokia and Microsoft are now allowing the app to be used by phones such as the HTC Windows Phone 8 and the upcoming Samsung ATIV Odyssey, even if it is technically in beta.

Source: Microsoft | Image via Nokia

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19 Comments

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PhunkyMunky - although it was a nice exclusive app. They have always from the start said they would release it to other MFR's to add it to their phones if they wanted. Get it big enough and like Google Maps it could be THE goto "MAP" app for all Windows Phones and that is not a bad position to be in. The more people who use it the more they are likely to improve on it and give more features as the popularity grows and the demand for updates and better features increases.

Also Nokia has better camera's than most phones, EOS(camera IS), More Filters and unique apps they are building for their phones. This will give them a unique advantage over other phones for now. They will continue to innovate and if one MFR that can compete on the same level as APPLE it would be Nokia.

They need to improve toast notifications, slim down the phone more and make it a solid aluminum offering, provide more options for customization while keeping it safe to customize.

If the new phones are even close to the rumors that have been buzzing around the internet then it will make quite a few people happier.

There's Nokia Drive and Nokia Maps. Which so far (including its augmented reality of the Nokia City lens) allot better then any maps solution Google offers.

Nokia loses with this, it was the one thing that really differentiated the Nokia devices from the rest of the WP competition.

All devices are pretty equal barring the chassis, so software was their main differentiator...

Of course the winners are all WP8 users :-)

phunkymunky said,
Nokia loses with this, it was the one thing that really differentiated the Nokia devices from the rest of the WP competition.

All devices are pretty equal barring the chassis, so software was their main differentiator...

Of course the winners are all WP8 users :-)

Think of it as extremely good advertising for the brand, something that Nokia really needs at the moment.

Mikeffer said,

Think of it as extremely good advertising for the brand, something that Nokia really needs at the moment.

Yes, good point!

mrmomoman I agree as well. There were more differentiators to the Nokia devices, software was a major component though.

I'm wondering if they'll now port other mapping components as well, maybe even Nokia Transport...

Hope they make it available to WP7.8 as well once it hits the streets next month. Not buying a WP8 phone for a few months at least...

They did with Bing Maps, but they made a deal with Nokia to make it the preferred mapping solution.

The only issue with Bing Maps has been that a patent licensing agreements kept it from having automatic voice directions. Instead you got an audible beep to let you know to press the screen to hear it. It still worked great though as the beep prepared me to pay attention where as if it just said it, I might have ignored the first part.

as much as i love Microsoft but its typical Microsoft way when they provide a new service or device they focus on us or us-uk-canada and fk everyone else.
anyway im going all the way Nokia

We better get it.

The Nokia Drive app for 7.5 is good but we need spoken street names, and we've been waiting for this for over a year now. WP8 users get it within 2 months? Come on.

Great, some quality competition for Google! I'm an android user + a fan of google products but I have seen what getting too big for your boots and having no competition does to companies. I hope the WP platform gets some nice app reviews. Won't be long before I'm jumping in there too

To be clear, the app has always been called a "Beta" on the Lumia 920.

Even though I already have it on my 920, I'm happily surprised that both Nokia and MS followed through by giving this to the rest of the ecosystem. It was starting to get to the point where I was thinking that it was a bait-and-switch offering.

This is big news, i use it all the time on my 920 (and 800 before), absolutely quality app and should really be highlighted for the platform, great news.