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 Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone

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RoadSofa

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PostSubject: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Tue Mar 06, 2018 5:00 pm

Hey Ya'll,

Got a question regarding GPS Apps for my Samsung S4. I recently upgraded my mobile phone to a Samsung S7 and was thinking about turning my old S4 into a GPS instead of shelling out hundreds for a Garnmin. I ride out in the sticks where there is no cell service and would like to be able to utilize my old S4.

What apps are you all using and am I crazy for even attempting this?

Thanks for your help!

RS usa
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johnkol




PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Tue Mar 06, 2018 5:16 pm

You can get a Garmin 1690 or 2460 for less than $50 on eBay; these older units allow you to put together routes on your PC and then download them to the GPS. I have done that for multiple week-long trips, and I far prefer GPS units to my smartphone.
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RoadSofa

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Tue Mar 06, 2018 5:46 pm

johnkol wrote:
You can get a Garmin 1690 or 2460 for less than $50 on eBay; these older units allow you to put together routes on your PC and then download them to the GPS. I have done that for multiple week-long trips, and I far prefer GPS units to my smartphone.

Thanks for the response Johnkol! Not exactly the answer I was looking for but helpful just the same. looking at apps for the smartphone is not as easy as I thought it might be.
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jotis




PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Tue Mar 06, 2018 10:16 pm

I'm still trying things out and ride with both a Garmin 78 and my iPhone. I've been trying a bunch of apps. Right now I'm really liking RideWithGPS. It was created for bicyclists but is used for everything. You can create routes online and to me it's easier than using Garmin Basecamp or Google Earth, it's a very fast and smart planning tool. You can save routes for offline. You can import/export tracks/routes easily as well. I do my planning there and then export to my Garmin via Basecamp. Another nice thing is you can edit or add a route from any computer, since it's web-based, and then your phone just syncs--no cords, no Basecamp needed.

Of course, Rever is the official app for the BDR routes. I liked it when I tried it, but not as much as RideWithGPS, primarily because I felt the RideWithGPS routing tools and process were smoother and far more efficient. As you add a lot of waypoints RideWithGPS could care less, but Rever tended to get slower as I added more.

MotionX is awesome but apparently they are failing and stopping.

Galileo - haven't tried this one.

I'll probably always ride with both the Garmin and my phone but the Garmin is just backup for me (and a bit more trustworthy), and it's nice to check them both if I'm skeptical about anything. But on the phone it's also easy to zoom in/out, add location-tagged photos, view different map types, etc. And it's up to you if you want it but sometimes I'll enable turn notifications--it can be nice to have a sanity check or be told there's a hard right I need to take up around the next corner, etc., especially as a mostly solo rider.

I'd say just grab a couple of the apps (there are way more than I've mentioned here) and try them for a few rides.

Good luck, report back on what you find.
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dhally

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Wed Mar 07, 2018 2:42 am

RoadSofa wrote:
Hey Ya'll,

Got a question regarding GPS Apps for my Samsung S4. I recently upgraded my mobile phone to a Samsung S7 and was thinking about turning my old S4 into a GPS instead of shelling out hundreds for a Garnmin. I ride out in the sticks where there is no cell service and would like to be able to utilize my old S4.

What apps are you all using and am I crazy for even attempting this?

Thanks for your help!

RS usa

No not crazy. App depends on roads vs trails/forest service roads

For street, Google maps is good. Also CoPilot. Both free

For offroad you need an app that has usgs or usfs maps. I use Gaia. Another is Backcountry Navigator. Both are paid apps.

There are many others, those are just the ones I've used.

Advrider has a GPS forum with more info.
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RoadSofa

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:52 am

jotis wrote:
I'm still trying things out and ride with both a Garmin 78 and my iPhone. I've been trying a bunch of apps. Right now I'm really liking RideWithGPS. It was created for bicyclists but is used for everything. You can create routes online and to me it's easier than using Garmin Basecamp or Google Earth, it's a very fast and smart planning tool. You can save routes for offline. You can import/export tracks/routes easily as well. I do my planning there and then export to my Garmin via Basecamp. Another nice thing is you can edit or add a route from any computer, since it's web-based, and then your phone just syncs--no cords, no Basecamp needed.

Of course, Rever is the official app for the BDR routes. I liked it when I tried it, but not as much as RideWithGPS, primarily because I felt the RideWithGPS routing tools and process were smoother and far more efficient. As you add a lot of waypoints RideWithGPS could care less, but Rever tended to get slower as I added more.

MotionX is awesome but apparently they are failing and stopping.

Galileo - haven't tried this one.

I'll probably always ride with both the Garmin and my phone but the Garmin is just backup for me (and a bit more trustworthy), and it's nice to check them both if I'm skeptical about anything. But on the phone it's also easy to zoom in/out, add location-tagged photos, view different map types, etc. And it's up to you if you want it but sometimes I'll enable turn notifications--it can be nice to have a sanity check or be told there's a hard right I need to take up around the next corner, etc., especially as a mostly solo rider.

I'd say just grab a couple of the apps (there are way more than I've mentioned here) and try them for a few rides.

Good luck, report back on what you find.

Thanks Jotis! GREAT info!
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RoadSofa

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:58 am

dhally wrote:
RoadSofa wrote:
Hey Ya'll,

Got a question regarding GPS Apps for my Samsung S4. I recently upgraded my mobile phone to a Samsung S7 and was thinking about turning my old S4 into a GPS instead of shelling out hundreds for a Garnmin. I ride out in the sticks where there is no cell service and would like to be able to utilize my old S4.

What apps are you all using and am I crazy for even attempting this?

Thanks for your help!

RS usa

No not crazy. App depends on roads vs trails/forest service roads

For street, Google maps is good. Also CoPilot. Both free

For offroad you need an app that has usgs or usfs maps. I use Gaia. Another is Backcountry Navigator. Both are paid apps.

There are many others, those are just the ones I've used.

Advrider has a GPS forum with more info.

Thanks DHALLY! I use google maps exclusively for the road but need a GPS app when I have no cell service off road. I looked at Backcountry navigator and it looked pretty cool but i downloaded the free version which was just a tease. So Gaia meets your needs?
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wwguy

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Wed Mar 07, 2018 12:09 pm

I use my Galaxy S7 all the time (literally) for off-road riding here in Idaho in places where there's no cell service.

I like the US Topo Maps app for general navigation, trip logging, and exporting tracks to applications like Google Earth etc.











For riding on USFS trails I like the Avenza map app with the free USFS Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUM).



Below is an example of US Topo Map app tracks imported into Google Earth for review after a ride.

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dhally

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Wed Mar 07, 2018 1:53 pm

RoadSofa wrote:


Thanks DHALLY! I use google maps exclusively for the road but need a GPS app when I have no cell service off road. I looked at Backcountry navigator and it looked pretty cool but i downloaded the free version which was just a tease. So Gaia meets your needs?

You can download offlilne maps for google maps for the area you will be riding. The CoPilot app has offline road maps as well, and the paid version has turn-by-turn navigation.

Yes Gaia works for me for USFS roads and backcountry exploration. It does have road maps as well, but no turn by turn navigation. All the apps are hard to learn and have their quirks... One thing I like about Gaia is it automatically synchronizes with my phone and online Gaia.com. I can make routes and waypoints at home and they automatically synchronize with my phone. I can also select which ones are stored on the phone or kept online. Gaia has the USFS Visitor maps and detailed maps that show all the road numbers, or you can switch to topo maps. They even have satellite maps, but I don't use those on my phone.

The biggest problem with Gaia (or probably other apps) is you have to select a map area to download in advance, and the downloading is time consuming and can fail. So you really need to do it at home a couple days in advance with a good connection.

Avenza maps was mentioned - it is the best for OHV areas since you can get georeferenced pdf trail maps of most OHV areas. The USFS MVUM are also available on Avenza, but I don't like them since they don't have any terrain or points of interest, just the roads. They will keep you legal, though. Avenza also has the USFS Visitor maps, but you have to buy them from USFS and they aren't cheap.

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RoadSofa

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Wed Mar 07, 2018 8:46 pm

wwguy wrote:
I use my Galaxy S7 all the time (literally) for off-road riding here in Idaho in places where there's no cell service.

I like the US Topo Maps app for general navigation, trip logging, and exporting tracks to applications like Google Earth etc.











For riding on USFS trails I like the Avenza map app with the free USFS Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUM).



Below is an example of US Topo Map app tracks imported into Google Earth for review after a ride.


Very Nice WWGUY! So help me understand, With USTOPOMaps, do I need to download maps of the area I'm going to after the app is running?
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RoadSofa

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Wed Mar 07, 2018 8:52 pm

Thank you all for your responses! I've got a really good starting point for my research. I will post later with my results

RS usa
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wwguy

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Wed Mar 07, 2018 8:55 pm

RoadSofa wrote:

Very Nice WWGUY! So help me understand, With USTOPOMaps, do I need to download maps of the area I'm going to after the app is running?

Yes you download the maps from the internet and cache (store) them on the phone for offline use.
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dmmcd

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PostSubject: Re: Question regarding GPS Apps for my smart phone   Tue Mar 13, 2018 1:57 pm

I use osmand for the mapping/navigation program. It has offline maps and is free. You can also import tracks and use them for nav.

https://osmand.net/

I use Furkot for planning and to create maps and routes, then export to .gpx file. I use the PC to do that, I think it is way easier. Then I save the .gpx to Dropbox, open on my phone, and away you go.

Keep in mind, the S7 is waterproof, the S4 is not, so you may want to put it in a ziplock bag or get a waterproof case for it. I use my S7 for nav.
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