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Hema Explorer [Android] - Storing maps on an SD card

Author: Robert Taylor Reference Number: AA-00330 Views: 19275 Created: 2014-04-28 20:37 Last Updated: 2018-09-11 10:28 69 Rating/ 4 Voters


This article assumes that you already have the Hema Explorer app installed on your device.

Some devices will support 64Gb and 128Gb SD cards, and some will not. It would be wise to check that your device is compatible with large SD cards before making your purchase!

On some devices and/or versions of Android, the app will not be able to see the external storage path to be able to use it. Some device vendors do not configure their device correctly, causing the device to present their external storage device in a way that the app cannot see.

Not all Android devices have an SD card slot!

It can be an advantage if your device has an SD card slot as it allows you to extend your storage capacity (in a similar way to adding an extra hard drive to your PC).

On a device which has an SD card slot, the internal storage is often referred to as the "internal SD card" even though, technically, it is NOT an SD card.

Generally, we refer to a physical SD card as an "external" SD card to differentiate it from the internal storage.

If you are running the Hema Explorer app on an Android device which has an SD card slot, and you have an SD card in the slot, you can store the offline maps on the SD card to reduce the space used on the device's internal storage memory.

If you are going to the trouble and expense of getting an SD card, we would generally recommend one of 8Gb in size or larger.

When this article was written the current "sweet spot" (ie. best bang for buck), was a 16Gb card.

If you are going to use an SD card for storage, it is easier to set up the app BEFORE you download any maps.

Configuring the app to use the SD card for storage

Go to the Settings panel

Scroll down until you see the Root Folder setting, and tap the option.

You will see a popup with some options. The options you see will depend on the version of Android which is on your device.

Android version older than 4.4

Root folder setting

If you wish to use an SD card for storage and your device is running an Android version earlier than 4.4, you should use the Choose custom location option.

Point the selector at the top-level of the SD card.


You will need to find out the path to the external SD card on your device!

Different manufacturers do this in different ways, and the same device's path may change when the Android version is updated, so it is not possible for us to tell you exactly what the external SD card storage path will be on your specific device.

Newer versions of Android, for example, often show paths such as /storage/3631-3532/.

If you are not sure what the external SD card storage location is for your device, try searching Google, you may find what you need to know there!

Hema Explorer will create its own folder on the SD card. Do NOT create your own folder!

Newer Android versions

Android 6 or newer

If you wish to use an SD card for storage and your device is running an Android version later than 4.4, the possible paths for external storage should be displayed here. Different devices may expose different locations for their external storage. In some cases, a device may not provide the app with a storage location which the app understands, in which case the external storage path may not appear on the Root Folder dialog window. In this case, create a ticket in the Hema Support system, and advise the storage path which is not working in the ticket details, along with details of your device etc.

The app will create its own folder on the SD card. Do NOT create your own folder!

Moving existing content

If you have already downloaded maps to the internal storage on your device, and you use an option to move the content to the external SD card storage, you should see a dialog telling you that the app is moving the existing data, as shown in the example below:

Moving file cache message

If you have already downloaded ALL map content, expect this move operation to take a while, as it there is around 2.5Gb of data being moved from your device's internal storage to the SD card. This takes time!

If the move of existing maps does not work on your device, try uninstalling and re-installing the app.


Do NOT create a folder on the SD card, and point the app at the folder.

If you wish to use the SD card to store the Map content used by the Hema Explorer app, you simply point the Root Folder setting to the top-level of the external SD card.

When you point the app at the top level of the SD card, the app will create its own folder, which contains app content and other sub-folders.

If you have issues accessing the SD card storage on your device:

  1. Make sure the card is inserted correctly in the device slot. Try ejecting and re-inserting the card in the slot.
  2. Format the card in the device you intend to use it in.

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