Begin with OsmAnd
When you launch OsmAnd for the first time, all the parameters will be set to default settings. You can configure them by changing features on the menu. As you launch the app, you'll see the start screen suggesting you to download maps. Pick the one you need and proceed to the application.
When you launch OsmAnd for the first time, by default you will have a "Mini world overview map." We recommend to download the "World overview map". This basic map allows you to view regions and countries. Since OsmAnd 3.5, this map contains a more detailed road map and weighs less. Also, from version 3.5, when you need a map for a specific area, you can click on the desired area directly on the world map, OsmAnd will offer to download a map for the selected area.
The free version of OsmAnd allows you to make 7 free downloads. After downloading the map, please click on the "Back" button to go to the map screen.
The OsmAnd+ version (Android) allows unlimited downloads and map updates with all the new details. The application uses OpenStreetMap resources — the maps created by contributors from all over the world. People add new items to the map, refine the details and delete the points of interest (POI) that are no longer there. Thus, the updates will provide the freshest information available. To download the map of the region you need, go to Download Maps - All downloads and choose the one you need.
You can also switch to view the dashboard at the start. A dashboard is a starting screen with different cards containing information about different groups of settings or files. The dashboard shows your Favourites (favorite places), your GPX tracks list, the plugin's information, etc. To adjust your dashboard settings, please go to OsmAnd - Dashboard and press the settings button in the upper-right corner.
Navigation profiles (for Android only)
In OsmAnd 3.5 (Android version), in addition to the standard navigation profiles (Car, pedestrian, public transport), we added the ability to make your own profile with all the settings, icons, etc. Now you can set any parameters for the navigation profile and enable special plugins for each profile. These profiles can also be exported and imported to another device with the OsmAnd application installed. You can see an example of setting your own profile in this article.
Setting up OsmAnd for your region
To set app language, please go to Settings - OsmAnd settings - Display language. Now all your menus will be in the chosen language.
To change the map names language, please go to Configure map - Map language. You can set it to Local names and the map names will be displayed in the language of the region or you can choose one language for all names. Also, you can choose to transliterate the names if they are missing on the map in your language.
This parameter will affect the units of length used on the map, the appearance of the speed limit sign is shown when navigating, and right-hand or left-hand driving.
Units of length: Select kilometers/meters, miles/feet, or miles/yards as desired. This affects all distance and speed information widgets and announcements.
These settings could be configured separately for each navigation profile. To change the driving region, select the profile that you want to configure in the main menu, then click "Profile Settings"-> "General settings" and then in the "Units & Formats" menu you can configure the Driving Region, Units of length, Coordinate format, Angular unit, Units of speed. In the same way, you can configure all Navigation profiles.
To set app language, please go to Device Settings-> choose "OsmAnd Maps"-> Preferred Language. After that your app menu will be displayed in the language of your device.
For changing the map names language, please go to app menu-> Map-> Map language. You can set it to Show local names and the map names will be displayed in the language of the region or you can choose one language for all names. Also, you can choose to transliterate the names if the ones in your language are missing on the map.
This parameter will affect the units of length used on the map, the appearance of the speed limit sign shown when navigating, and right-hand or left-hand driving.
Units of length: Select kilometers or miles. This affects all distance and speed information widgets and announcements. You can also change this later in app menu-> Settings-> General Settings-> Driving region, Unit of length and coordinate format.
The ways to download maps
There are several ways to view maps. For offline use, you need to pre-download your maps. The OsmAnd native format is a compact vector in .obf format.
There are two main types of maps you can download.
You can download pre-fabricated "vector" maps in OsmAnd's native format. They are very compact (about 10% compared to tiles) and allow zooming in to very high zoom levels without losing detail or resolution. If you have a relatively slow device, please note that zooming out to "overview" levels usually takes more time and CPU.
To download the maps you need, just go to OsmAnd-> 'Download maps' and select the country, city or region. There, you'll see all maps for this area available for downloading.
When you want a map for a certain area you can zoom on the World map and OsmAnd suggests downloading a map for the chosen area. You can switch off this dialog. You should go to menu-> Settings-> OsmAnd settings-> Dialogs and notifications.
Or you can tap into the needed region on the World map. You see the special dialog with downloading a map, Contour lines files and Hillshades, Wikipedia.
Also, you can make your own maps using OsmAnd Map Creator, a tool designed for this purpose. You'll need to prepare the maps on your PC and transfer them to the "osmand" folder on your device. You might need to restart the app afterward.
As you install OsmAnd iOS application, you'll be able to view and manage offline maps of virtually any country in the world. To do so, you need to tap the menu button on the left, then select Maps & Resources, choose the continent and then proceed to the map download. You can also use the Search field to find the necessary map.
Besides the general map itself, you'll see a Contour lines map, a Wikipedia file, a Hillshade map, etc. They can be downloaded together with the main map to add layers of information. If the downloads are inactive, you'll need to turn on the contour lines plugin first. Tap Maps & Resources - Plugins menu and switch the plugin on. To download the map, just tap the download button next to it. As soon as the map is downloaded, tap Go to the map and start viewing the map you need. You can also start downloading other maps and view the one that's already installed while the download is in progress. Just go to the map by tapping Back.
When you want a map for a certain area you can tap directly on the World map and OsmAnd suggests downloading a map for the chosen area.
Types of maps
OsmAnd offers you numerous map styles and data layers to fit the purpose. Let's take a glance at the main ones.
Main map styles
- OsmAnd style is the default style of map rendering. It offers details about the city such as streets, buildings, transport stops, etc.
- Touring view is created to meet the needs of tourists and has higher contrast than the regular one.
- UniRS and LightRS styles are author styles that render the basic map information but in different color schemes. It may be quite useful for cyclists.
- Nautical map style will come in handy at overwater travels: you'll see the details of infrastructure like ports, sailing routes, navigation lights, etc. Read more about Nautical maps.
- Winter and ski style is designed to help you navigate on winter sports locations: you'll be able to see ski pistes and other details such as complexity of skiing tracks and ski lift markers. Read more about Ski maps.
- Topo - for hiking, trekking and cycling in nature. Readable outdoors and in difficult lighting. Contrast roads and natural objects, various types of routes, contour lines with advanced settings, additional details. The option “Quality of road surface” allows you to distinguish between roads with different surface quality. There is no night mode.
- Mapnik - former default style. Different colours.
- Desert - for deserts and other sparsely populated areas. Displays more details on the viewing scale.
- Offroad - for off-road driving, based on the "Topo" topographic style, can be used with green satellite imagery as a backing. Reduced thickness of main roads, increased thickness of tracks, paths, bicycles and other routes. There is no night mode.
Android version. To switch to one of these styles, just go to Configure map — Map style. Please note that you can configure different styles for each Navigation profile separately. By default, OsmAnd map style will be everywhere.
iOS version. To switch to one of these styles, just go to Map-> Map type-> Styles for offline maps.
Online maps and layers
For Android version. You can add an over- and underlay to the basic map style you're viewing. To do that, just turn the Online maps plugin on, then go to Configure map menu and enable over-, underlay or both. Note that when you return to the main screen, you'll see a small slider allowing you to adjust the opacity of the layer and switch to the new layer completely or use it together with the base map. Also note that over-, underlay maps may be different for different Navigation profiles. Changing maps for one profile will not affect the other automatically; by default, over-, underlay maps are disabled for all profiles.
There are tens of online layers. To install them, just go to Configure map — Overlay (or Underlay) and press Install more. Some of the maps are only available for certain regions, but others have a world coverage. You can find satellite view, cycling routes and even location of fire hydrants there. Just explore the list to find the ones you prefer. These layers require an internet connection and will be stored as raster maps in osmand/tiles folder. Please read more about the difference between raster and vector maps here .
You can also prepare your own raster maps.
For iOS version. You can add an over- and underlay to the basic map style you're viewing. To do that, just go to app menu-> Map-> Overlay / Underlay. Note that when you return to the main screen, you'll see a small slider allowing you to adjust the opacity of the layer and switch to the new layer completely or use it together with the base map.
There are some online layers. To use them, just go to app menu-> Map types-> Online Maps. Some of the maps are only available for certain regions, but others have a world coverage.
Adjusting voice prompts
For Android version
To set the language for voice prompts, go to the main menu-> then select the Navigation profile you want to configure "Configure profile"-> "Navigation Settings"-> "Voice prompts"-> "Voice guidance" and select your language. You can also get to the "Navigation Settings" menu for each Navigation profile through Main menu-> Settings-> App profiles-> choose profile. Note that you can't get to Navigation settings when you chose Browse map profile.
If you select a TTS voice, you need to have a respective text-to-speech engine in your Android operating system. These are partly included in Android or can be installed separately. Please go to your Android (device) settings, find Language and keyboard / Text-to-speech output or similar. Select or install an engine, then also install the language support for the language you need, this may be an extra setting or small download.
Please test ('Listen to an example' or similar test button provided) if your Android TTS is working ok. Then you may also test if your OsmAnd voice prompts have been selected properly by going to Settings-> Plugins-> OsmAnd development-> Test voice prompts. (OsmAnd development plugin must be activated to see the setting). To disable voice prompts, please go to "Configure profile"-> "Navigation Settings"-> "Voice prompts"-> "Voice guidance" and select 'Do not use' option.
For iOS version
To set the language for your voice prompts, please go to app menu-> Settings-> Navigation settings-> choose "Car" (for example)-> Voice guidance and select voice guidance for navigation.
- How to use the map
View, customize and use your map easily.
- How to find something on the map
Choose the map style, find your location and change options to use the maps the best way possible.
Drive, cycle or walk using up-to-date voice navigation with turn-by-turn prompts in your language.
- Trip planning
Make a route, plan your course, save the tracks of the trips.