/ NEW ARTICLE: Climbing into your pocket

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UKC Articles - on 03 Feb 2011
Bouldr, 4 kbThe digital revolution has gone mobile, and if you're not one of the millions of people who've got a 'smart' mobile device, then you're missing out!

In this two-part article, we're going to be reviewing ten of the best mobile device apps for climbing and mountaineering, and peering through the looking glass to see what the future will bring...

Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/page.php?id=3042

ziggytang - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to UKC Articles:

So when is there going to be a uk climbing app available for iPhones?
Milesy - on 03 Feb 2011
I was looking at the Mammut avalanche iphone app the other day. I cant see my pulling my iphone my pocket out half way up a gully to use the clinometer to check the slope angle :) Nice in principle though.
BelleVedere on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to UKC Articles:

and if you're not one of the millions of people who've got a 'smart' mobile device, then you're missing out!

could you be any more condescending?
gary.barr on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to UKC Articles:

and if you're not one of the millions of people who've got a 'smart' mobile device, then you're missing out!

should read

and if you're not one of the millions of people who've got an 'iPhone or iPad', then you're missing out!

I have a 'smart phone', but non of the apps in the article are available for it (Samsung Wave GT-S8500.
chris j on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to UKC Articles:
> if you're not one of the millions of people who've got a 'smart' mobile device, then you're missing out!

Now I've read the article I don't think I am!
Alun - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to gary.barr:
> I have a 'smart phone', but non of the apps in the article are available for it (Samsung Wave GT-S8500.

That's true, and it's a shame. I tried to include as many non-iOS apps as possible, but struggled to find that many - there are simply many many more apps for iOS devices (both in terms of climbing, and in general). That's changing though, as Android become ever more popular.

If anybody can link to some more non-iOS climbing-related apps here in the comments, that would be great!
Alun - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to Milesy:
> I was looking at the Mammut avalanche iphone app the other day. I cant see my pulling my iphone my pocket out half way up a gully to use the clinometer to check the slope angle :) Nice in principle though.

Haha no me neither. A lot of the outdoor companies have iPhone apps that are "nice in principal", but really little more than a marketing ploy. The North Face has an app, for example, which is little more than everytrail.com with a North Face logo.
gary.barr on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to Alun: Sorry, I did forget to say good article :)
Richard Hall - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to Alun:

Hi Alun, hope all is well in Spain.

I use a few apps for climbing purposes. Listed below:

Weather Pro - The best weather app I have found, I have all my regular climbing destinations saved in so can quickly check where has the best weather.

Sunrise & Set - Good to know how long you have after work and plan routes accordingly

Sun Seeker - Point phone at route and it tells you where the sun will be at different times of the day, so you know when it will be in the shade/sun.
Toby S - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to UKC Articles:

Have a look at the Social Hiking App too, it sends out a live update of where you are on your route http://new.socialhiking.org.uk/

Endomondo is pretty good for tracking your progress too, I use it a fair bit for cycling and walking routes.

Ok, they're not so much climbing as walking/other sport apps but still definitely worth considering.
Alun - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to Richard Hall:
Hi Rich, all good out here, thanks!

Sun Seeker looks like a fantastic app - especially useful out here in spring/summer.
NickD - on 03 Feb 2011
Does anyone know what the coverage is like for Bouldr in North Wales? I wouldn't want to bust out a whole 1.79 and find it was only grotty grit pebbles.
Alun - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to NickD:
> Does anyone know what the coverage is like for Bouldr in North Wales?

Their website http://www.bouldr.net/ gives all the info for free.

"a whole 1.79" - that's only half a pint!
Offwidth - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to es:

Why's that es? I'm happy missing out (not feeling condescended) as I'm not paying these companies 20+ a month for something that's not worth anything close to that and better still I don't even suffer (usually I can use a mate's if I need to) ;-)

PS I look forward to the future predictions as these often heavily understate the 3G/4G/?G bandwidth limitations that will either heavily slow future mobile use or force people to pay even more to beat the 'slow lane'. For climbing I can see people downloading stuff they will likely need the day before and so not have to worry about reception or live download speed; like saving books on a Kindle for your hols.
lex - on 03 Feb 2011

I'm one of the 'missing out' ones as I just have a phone which makes phone calls, but am in no way a Luddite - indeed I willingly embrace all new-fangled contraptions.

However, it does seem that a lot of these Apps are filling in an empty space because they are technically possible, rather than because there is a need.

A good example of this is the Sun Seeker - "Point phone at route and it tells you where the sun will be at different times of the day, so you know when it will be in the shade/sun."

Surely anyone will know where South, or what time it is, and can work it out by pointing their head in the direction of the route.

Have to say none of the apps detailed above have in any way inspired me to get a fancy phone. Quite happy with maps, guide books, compass.

Cheers,

Lex
NickD - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to Alun:
> (In reply to NickD)
> Their website http://www.bouldr.net/ gives all the info for free.

Thanks. The iphone.bouldr page doesn't link to the main site.
lithos on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to Alun:
> (In reply to NickD)
> [...]
>
> Their website http://www.bouldr.net/ gives all the info for free.
>
> "a whole 1.79" - that's only half a pint!

pah that's a pint of Sam Smiths in the Welly !
Alun - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to lex:
> Surely anyone will know where South, or what time it is, and can work it out by pointing their head in the direction of the route.

That's an interesting point, and it goes back to how people let technology take over what they should be able to do in our heads. How many of us haven't felt a guilty twinge as we've reached for the calculator, knowing in our hearts that we should (and could!) do the sum in our heads!

The sun-seeker app is a little more complicated though (I confess I haven't yet tried it, but I can see the potential application). How accurately can you point out South from where you're sat right now? Within 5 degrees? 10 degrees? 20? And then how accurately can you guess the orientation of a given wall (of a building or a cliff) in your field of view? And do you know at what time the sun-sets today?

The point is that you pays your money, you takes your choice. Richard Hall obviously likes Sun Seeker enough to pay his money, and seems happy enough!
Stephen Halliday - on 03 Feb 2011
If you love lists, or should do because you/your group repeatedly forget useful bits of kit, then the Mammut List App is pretty useful. Especially as you can assign group items to members of the team and then have proof of who really did forget the stove gas canisters.

Unfortunately it is for iPhone only, but on the plus side: it's free.
http://www.mammut.ch/en/packinglist.html
Alun - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to lithos:
> pah that's a pint of Sam Smiths in the Welly !

sigh... Sam Smiths. I do miss a decent pint of ale!
panyan - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to Alun:

Nice article. You missed out the Stoney Middleton and Bowderstone apps. (iphone and android)

Free to download from thesend.co.uk
Alun - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to panyan:
> Free to download from thesend.co.uk

Thanks.

thesend.co.uk looks like it has real potential!
Robert Durran - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to UKC Articles:
> The digital revolution has gone mobile, and if you're not one of the millions of people who've got a 'smart' mobile device, then you're missing out!

Personally, I increasingly go to the hills to get away from all this shit.
jon on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to Robert Durran:
> (In reply to UKC Articles)
> [...]
>
> Personally, I increasingly go to the hills to get away from all this
shit.

Well Rob, I agree. I hate mobiles etc at the crag. And I find it sad that people need these gadgets to be able to be able to just go out climbing. Old fart maybe, but a completely contented and happy one.

TRip - on 03 Feb 2011
In reply to jon:

In, I think, Climbing Ice it says: "if you can climb you don't need gadgets, if you can't gadgets won't help you."

I like stuff to be simple.
wilkesley - on 04 Feb 2011
In reply to UKC Articles:

More use for cyclists and walkers, but Sports Tracker (www.sports-tracker.com/), which runs on Nokia phones is very good. Uses the gps to keep track of distance covered/calories burnt/altitude/etc. You can upload to their web site to get an overview of your workout. It's free.

Ian.
Steve Woollard on 04 Feb 2011
A word of warning - check the coordinates!

I got an App which gives me NGR's using the GPS on my phone - very useful if navigating in mist or needing to call in a helicopter!

But by chance I checked the coordinates; the Eastings were fine, but the Northings were about 70km out, a bug in the conversion I'm told!
Alun - on 05 Feb 2011
In reply to wilkesley:
> More use for cyclists and walkers, but Sports Tracker (www.sports-tracker.com/), which runs on Nokia phones is very good.

Looks great - a Nokia version of the MotionX app mentioned in the article. Thanks!
The Pylon King on 05 Feb 2011
In reply to UKC Articles:

Complete nonsense.

Its like the driver who uses sat nav all the time and then one day it breaks down and he's become so reliant on the technology that he cant use his own judgement and instinct because he hasnt been nurturing it.

More things to lose and get stressed about losing.

All these things are nice novelty toys for brainwashed consumers with too much money and not enough human spirit IMHO of course

Terms and conditions apply

ads.ukclimbing.com
riddle - on 05 Feb 2011
In reply to Robert Durran: Well said
Jonny2vests - on 05 Feb 2011
In reply to Steve Woollard:
> A word of warning - check the coordinates!
>
> I got an App which gives me NGR's using the GPS on my phone - very useful if navigating in mist or needing to call in a helicopter!
>
> But by chance I checked the coordinates; the Eastings were fine, but the Northings were about 70km out, a bug in the conversion I'm told!

Which App? Can I assume NGR = National Grid Reference?
Jonny2vests - on 05 Feb 2011
In reply to Pylon King:
> (In reply to UKC Articles)
>
> Complete nonsense.
>
> Its like the driver who uses sat nav all the time and then one day it breaks down and he's become so reliant on the technology that he cant use his own judgement and instinct because he hasnt been nurturing it.
>
> More things to lose and get stressed about losing.
>
> All these things are nice novelty toys for brainwashed consumers with too much money and not enough human spirit IMHO of course
>
> Terms and conditions apply

Oh I dunno. I quite like the idea of bimbling up to Stanage on Summer evenings armed only with my phone. Dragging the book about when soloing is a constant nause. Suppose I could just photograph the pages...
DrGav - on 05 Feb 2011
In reply to jonny2vests:

Yes. I like the idea of lifting my phone and the 'augmented reality' app kicks in as I view the crag through my cameralens, overlaying route lines, grades and clickthroughs to user comments. That would be pretty useful.
Scott_vzr on 05 Feb 2011
Wikitude Browser, a free Android App, has plenty hill and mountain Augmented reality files.

Nick
Jonny2vests - on 05 Feb 2011
In reply to DrGav:
> (In reply to jonny2vests)
>
> Yes. I like the idea of lifting my phone and the 'augmented reality' app kicks in as I view the crag through my cameralens, overlaying route lines, grades and clickthroughs to user comments. That would be pretty useful.

... wearing your sensory deprivation suit whilst laid in a tank of salt water.

DrJon.
Alun - on 06 Feb 2011
In reply to DrGav:
> Yes. I like the idea of lifting my phone and the 'augmented reality' app kicks in as I view the crag through my cameralens, overlaying route lines, grades and clickthroughs to user comments. That would be pretty useful.

Part 2 of the article (I think coming out on Wednesday) will talk extensively about that...
DrGav - on 06 Feb 2011
In reply to Alun:

Now we're talking! I look forward to what Wednesday might bring.

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