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Old 10-17-2013, 10:13 AM   #1
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Gps

As anyone found a good off-road gps app for the iPhone?

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Old 10-17-2013, 11:35 AM   #2
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iPhone needs cell towers.

I'd recommend a Tom Tom that receives satellite input and will show you which way to the nearest paved road.

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Old 10-17-2013, 11:56 AM   #3
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for offroad, I would stick with garmin until you've done map searches. the available mapping is better with garmins than the other brands. You'll want the topo for general coverage, but for specific areas, there may be a more detailed map product in higher resolution. for example, most national parks have very high resolution maps available 1:24K. Topo maps are usually 100K at best.

For street mapping, they're mostly the same but again, i would say garmin has the most maps if you're a world traveller. Garmin also has the most updates which keeps up with newly proposed streets and new POI's like stores/phone numbers.
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Old 10-17-2013, 01:44 PM   #4
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Google Earth, My Tracks, Scout look are great apps
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Old 10-17-2013, 02:10 PM   #5
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I just downloaded Trimble Outdoors Navigator that works off topo maps and the phone's GPS. I have not tried it yet though it looks like it might be worth a shot...and there is a free version, at least for android.
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Old 10-17-2013, 02:53 PM   #6
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I just downloaded Trimble Outdoors Navigator that works off topo maps and the phone's GPS. I have not tried it yet though it looks like it might be worth a shot...and there is a free version, at least for android.
I'm very curious if it can work without cell tower connectivity. I haven't heard of a phone having that capability yet.

If it had all the maps preloaded on the phone like a Tom Tom and used the gps signals to calculate location and direction, then it could work just like a GPS.
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Old 10-17-2013, 02:58 PM   #7
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I've tried 2: Trimble Outdoors Navigator and Backcountry Navigator.
You can download TOPOs for every state and regions within each state and those maps will work without the data connection. Both require you to purchase detailed TOPO maps and/or sign up for a yearly service to get all the features. From what I've been able to tell, these two have many of the same features and it really comes down to personal preference.

However... These are both geared towards outdoor adventures and not vehicular turn-by-turn navigation. Assuming you want to use this in your Jeep, I would recommend a Garmin product with lifetime map updates and purchase TOPOs for the offroad areas you will be driving in. You can do all the trip planning you want, but a Garmin device will allow you to quickly re-navigate or find an alternate route on the fly as well as guide you to and from the trail.
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Old 10-17-2013, 03:59 PM   #8
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Garmin has an app for the iphone that downloads the maps so you don't need a signal for it to work. 59.99 from the App Store.

I'm on Android and Garmin doesn't offer it. However, there are alternatives. Sygic is supposed to be very good. It also downloads the maps for offline use so the phone works like a standalone GPS. 7 day free trial, then 33.99 for a lifetime license with free updates.
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Old 10-18-2013, 02:11 AM   #9
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the problem with taking a phone out of cell reception and relying on your gps for info is that no phone i know of has a real, standalone gps receiver. As far as i know, they're all agpsr's and these figure out where you are by combining a dodgy gps signal, your wifi info and/or cell tower info. ...don't believe it, put your phone into airplane mode, turn off wifi, and any other type of communication settings. Now fire up any gps app and watch it work, or most likely not work.

So this is where you can get more cool gadgets to go with your phone. There are standalone bluetooth gps receivers you can get to pair with your phone or tablet to get location outside of cell service. The last time i looked at one for my iphone/ipad, they were about $100. About 10 years ago, I had one for my nokia symbian smartphone and it worked very well considering the maturity of the technology. Trust me, you will NEED a real gps receiver to go with your phone and mapping app if you go in the boonies. ..or just get a real GPS.
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Old 10-18-2013, 09:34 PM   #10
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A lot of car stereo's have built in GPS. Mine does. It's a seven inch flip screen, so it is larger than a lot of stand alone GPS, and it was only $300.
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Old 10-18-2013, 09:56 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by jackor View Post
the problem with taking a phone out of cell reception and relying on your gps for info is that no phone i know of has a real, standalone gps receiver. As far as i know, they're all agpsr's and these figure out where you are by combining a dodgy gps signal, your wifi info and/or cell tower info. ...don't believe it, put your phone into airplane mode, turn off wifi, and any other type of communication settings. Now fire up any gps app and watch it work, or most likely not work.

So this is where you can get more cool gadgets to go with your phone. There are standalone bluetooth gps receivers you can get to pair with your phone or tablet to get location outside of cell service. The last time i looked at one for my iphone/ipad, they were about $100. About 10 years ago, I had one for my nokia symbian smartphone and it worked very well considering the maturity of the technology. Trust me, you will NEED a real gps receiver to go with your phone and mapping app if you go in the boonies. ..or just get a real GPS.

The GPS on my S3 works in Airplane Mode. Where I live, there is a total of 1 tower anyway.
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Old 10-19-2013, 06:13 AM   #12
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The GPS on my S3 works in Airplane Mode. Where I live, there is a total of 1 tower anyway.

Thats because you didn't move much in airplane mode. Handheld and car gps will do the same -- they assume you didn't move and start mapping where it last stopped.

Go into airplane turn off all location services and gps and move a few miles. Now start the mapping app and enable location services/gps but leave all cell, background data, 3G, etc off. You'll see it's way off and won't be able to track your movements very well. It will also take a long time to figure out your direction of travel. Agps systems like those in phones need additional info from data services for accuracy, at minimum, they need to start from a location with a data/cell signal and you can wander away from cell service there but eventually its accuracy will drift.
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Old 10-19-2013, 10:27 AM   #13
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I just got back from running some errands. I went to my sister's house, the post office, then to the hardware store. With the cell and wifi radios off, I was able to get an accurate fix within a few seconds. The S3 is able to use GloNASS and GPS both, so it works pretty well. It's as fast and accurate as my Garmin. The only thing it lacks is the maps, which can be remedied.

I'm not trying to be argumentative. I have a Garmin that I use. I just wanted to test the S3 to see how well it works. Pretty well, so far.
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Old 10-19-2013, 11:10 AM   #14
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For off road I use Motion X GPS. The iPhone doesn't need cell or wifi for the GPS to work.
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Old 10-21-2013, 08:50 PM   #15
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Since posting this I have used an app called " every trail pro" while in Moab and it worked where there was no cel connection and seemed to work well( kept us from getting lost) I also will try some of the other suggestions made here.
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Old 12-10-2013, 11:21 AM   #16
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I've always used NavFree USA for Android for Offline Maps and it's always worked great where I downloaded the maps ahead of time.
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Old 12-10-2013, 05:33 PM   #17
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I use both Trimble Outdoors Navigator and Backcountry Navigator with my Android phone and when I preload the maps for the area I will be in prefer to use it over my Garmin. It worked traveling to Alaska and back this summer when we were 100's of miles from a cell tower.

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