/ Recommend me a smartphone for navigating in the hills with.

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Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
Hi all, I'm looking to buy a smartphone with gps capability which can display real time position information on a full colour OS map. I've heard about applications like Viewranger but I don't have a clue which phones would support that kind of thing. I currently use map, compass and a basic gps unit but am looking to upgrade the gps to something with mapping capabilities.
PopShot on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: Memory Map Adventurer 2800.
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel) Memory Map Adventurer 2800.
>

That isn't a smartphone though is it?
PopShot on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: It's better though. Much more rugged and more reliable. Tbh nobody really uses smartphones for navving in the outdoors :)
Pursued by a bear - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot: Oh, I don't know. The incident logs of Mountain Rescue Teams suggest quite a few people have tried this...

T.
PopShot on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Pursued by a bear:
> (In reply to PopShot) Oh, I don't know. The incident logs of Mountain Rescue Teams suggest quite a few people have tried this...
>
> T.
>

Hahaha! Yes quite. I'm sure the MRT's are plagued by this type of thing. Attempting to use a mobile phone to navigate on the mountains is not a good strategy :)
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to All: I will still have my Garmin eTrex and a OS map and compass with me. I know how to navigate. I'm not as clueless as you seem to think.
Fredt on 06 Jul 2013

In reply to Choss Weasel:

I use Memory Map on an iPhone. Shows you a 1:25000 map, and where you are on it.
Can't fault it.
Pritchard - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

The problem with using smart phones is they zonk battery. Then you lose your ability to navigate and call for help at the same time. If you go down this route I would recommend a 'spare battery' to take with you. They often click on the bottom of the phone and act like a charger until they are empty.

It should go without saying you should have a map and compass in the bag as back up.

Craig.
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Fredt:
>
> In reply to Choss Weasel:
>
> I use Memory Map on an iPhone. Shows you a 1:25000 map, and where you are on it.
> Can't fault it.


Thank you for your reply. That's the kind of information I was looking for.
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Pritchard:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
>
> The problem with using smart phones is they zonk battery. Then you lose your ability to navigate and call for help at the same time. If you go down this route I would recommend a 'spare battery' to take with you. They often click on the bottom of the phone and act like a charger until they are empty.
>
> It should go without saying you should have a map and compass in the bag as back up.
>
> Craig.
>

Thanks re the spare battery info. I have though already made clear that I will have a map and compass with me.

tom_in_edinburgh - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

Anything relatively new from Samsung or Apple will be fine. I use an iPhone 4 and it works fine. ViewRanger runs on Apple and Android.

As well as the phone a waterproof case and a largish external battery are handy.
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to tom_in_edinburgh:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
>
> Anything relatively new from Samsung or Apple will be fine. I use an iPhone 4 and it works fine. ViewRanger runs on Apple and Android.
>
> As well as the phone a waterproof case and a largish external battery are handy.
>

Cool, cheers :)
TOS on 06 Jul 2013 - 424ob.scansafe.net
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to Pritchard)
> [...]
>
> Thanks re the spare battery info. I have though already made clear that I will have a map and compass with me.

I think you missed his point about not being able to make a phone call in an emergency if you ran the battery flat, not the navigation part.
PopShot on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: If I were you I would heed the advice people are giving you and buy a proper gps unit then learn how to use it. Otherwise you will be troubling mountain rescue by the sounds of things. Go on a nav course too. Just my two-pennies worth.
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to TOS:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> [...]
>
> I think you missed his point about not being able to make a phone call in an emergency if you ran the battery flat, not the navigation part.
>

Fair enough, I can always carry a spare battery though.
PopShot on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to TOS)
> [...]
>
> Fair enough, I can always carry a spare battery though.
>

...and if that runs out? You really haven't thought this through.
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> [...]
>
> ...and if that runs out? You really haven't thought this through.
>

Well a spare phone then instead of the battery?
Pursued by a bear - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot: To be fair to the OP, they've said they have navigational nous.

But it's still true that a map, compass, knowledge of how to use them and a good dollop of common sense will serve you reliably. True too that even the best of us can get caught out now and again.

T.
PopShot on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to PopShot)
> [...]
>
> Well a spare phone then instead of the battery?
>

Don't you think this is getting a little ridiculous? Were talking about safety here. Never use your phone as your primary navigation device. This is for many reasons but mainly as everyone else is saying that if you break your leg you won be able to call for help once you have drained the battery operating a fancy GPS system. Have you much experience in the hills?
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3 Names - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel) If I were you I would heed the advice people are giving you and buy a proper gps unit then learn how to use it. Otherwise you will be troubling mountain rescue by the sounds of things. Go on a nav course too. Just my two-pennies worth.

If I were you id give up on Navigation, if you cant read and understand the original post, what chance a map and compass?

Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> [...]
>
> Don't you think this is getting a little ridiculous? Were talking about safety here. Never use your phone as your primary navigation device. This is for many reasons but mainly as everyone else is saying that if you break your leg you won be able to call for help once you have drained the battery operating a fancy GPS system. Have you much experience in the hills?
>

I have 20 years experience hillwalking in Scotland in every season and weather condition. Night too.
TOS on 06 Jul 2013 - 424ob.scansafe.net
In reply to Choss Weasel:

If you want a 'sensible' reply, my 2p worth would be it's actually possible to get Viewranger on quite a few very basic phones, and when I tried this a while back (for logging routes), all I needed was a tiny bluetooth gps unit which cost 30 if I recall.
These days quite a few basic phones have gps, removing the need for the separate gps unit to link to it.
I now use an iGotu logger instead (which doesn't have a display), which was equally cheap, but can last weeks instead.

If I wanted a 'map' gps to occasionally show my position, I'd buy a basic (or ruggedised) normal phone (with gps) and load Viewranger onto it.
I don't think smartphones and the outdoors are a good combination personally...
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to TOS:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
>
> If you want a 'sensible' reply, my 2p worth would be it's actually possible to get Viewranger on quite a few very basic phones, and when I tried this a while back (for logging routes), all I needed was a tiny bluetooth gps unit which cost 30 if I recall.
> These days quite a few basic phones have gps, removing the need for the separate gps unit to link to it.
> I now use an iGotu logger instead (which doesn't have a display), which was equally cheap, but can last weeks instead.
>
> If I wanted a 'map' gps to occasionally show my position, I'd buy a basic (or ruggedised) normal phone (with gps) and load Viewranger onto it.
> I don't think smartphones and the outdoors are a good combination personally...
>

Fair enough. I will rethink this.


PopShot on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to PopShot)
> [...]
>
> I have 20 years experience hillwalking in Scotland in every season and weather condition. Night too.
>

....but questionable common sense? Sorry but why not just go on a good nav course and then use the tools you already have? A basic GPS as well as a paper OS map and compass are well adequate 100% of the time. No need for gimmicks. No offense intended buddy and I hope you enjoy your hillwalking :)
Only a hill - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to All:

I can't believe people are arguing about this so soon after the last incredibly long-winded and tedious thread on this very topic!

Can we not agree that it's perfectly safe to use smartphones for mountain navigation if you have even the slightest amount of common sense and the right skills (just like with traditional nav)?

In response to the OP:
Don't listen to the naysayers. If you are an experienced navigator there's no reason why you shouldn't use Viewranger, which is an excellent navigational platform. You should consider an Android smartphone - either the new Samsung S4 Active (which is waterproof and shock resistant) or a cheaper unit coupled with rugged and waterproof case and a backup power supply.

Obviously you need to carry map and compass as well and be equally proficient in their use.
The Lemming - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:

You are like a broken record. Once you've said learn to use a map + compass once, you don't have to keep banging on about it.

Unlike yourself, most of us on this site are not children with short attention spans. We have the power to read and remember stuff within a discussion.

Now back to the OP. I've had my Samsung Ace for a year and a half. I initially got it to replace my ageing eTrex 10. I did a lot of researching and testing of all the available Android apps for map reading. I have maps for the entire country both 1-50 and 1-25. The best app I found was MM Tracker but sadly this is no longer available on Google.Play but it can be found. A kind soul on this site emailed me a copy. Its the bees knees.

There are other apps but the one which I found the hardest to use was Memory Maps own app. Their PC software is an excellent package but sadly the app leaves a lot to be desired.

I tested out several apps on my phone and Tablet and came to the conclusion that navigating with a phone or Tablet was a royal pain in the arse. These bits of kit are great in perfect weather with perfect visibility. Sadly they don't like getting wet, and even if you put them in a water-proof bag they still don't function properly. On top of all this you can't really use them while wearing gloves.

In the end I came to the conclusion that the phone was just a bit of fun to show off with for a second or two but completely unreliable for taking out on the hill.

In my humble opinion the best smartphone for GPS map navigating, is a purpose made GPS device such as a garmin eTrex. The batteries last for ever, they work in the rain and can be used with gloves.

You may get lucky with a smartphone though.
George Ormerod - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill:

I agree. Why can't the knobbers on here just answer a simple question without all the patronising guff. Choss Weasel has made it obvious that he's an experienced and competent hill goer and navigator, more than capable of making the decisions about battery life, back-up navigation and having a phone to communicate with in an emergency.
Only a hill - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to The Lemming:
Many of the newer high end models have super sensitive screens which work perfectly well with gloves (or a stylus/stick/any pointy object). This also makes them work well even if running with water (which can throw off the sensitivity of a regular capacative screen). The best modern displays are also extremely visible in direct sunlight.

I think you've had a bad experience with Memory Map - Viewranger is truly excellent and I've used it for years in the mountains with no problems.
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill, George Ormerod, The Lemming: Thanks for the replies guys. I'm still thinking on this one, really as long as it works in wet or damp weather(with a waterproof case if needed) I think I'm inclined to go for it.


Dr.S at work - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
Have memory map GB on a I phone 4s, works well, can carry the whole uk at 1:25000 in my pocket - handy as a back up device - if carrying a phone anyway, why bother with GPS standalone a - it's madness I tell thee
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Dr.S at work:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> Have memory map GB on a I phone 4s, works well, can carry the whole uk at 1:25000 in my pocket - handy as a back up device - if carrying a phone anyway, why bother with GPS standalone a - it's madness I tell thee
>

Well that's the kind of set-up I think I would have. Probably an I-Phone, that way I get a cool phone and it's available to use as part of my navigation arsenal too. I might not even use it as a main/primary navigation system, it would just been a nice thing to have available. I enjoy using Memory Map on my laptop and so I wanted to get a phone with mapping too to play with.
Dan_S - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Dr.S at work:

I bother with a standalone GPS because I keep my phone turned off in my bag so that I still have decent amount of battery left on it to contact the lovely boys and girls in red to come and help me out in the event of a faeces/fan interfacing issue.

I'd be quite embarrassed if I actually needed MR, and discovered that I'd burnt out the battery and couldn't make a call or send a text.

My standalone GPS is good for almost 48 hrs on its most energy saving settings for route tracking on a single charge. My "smart" phone sat idling away its time is good for probably something slightly over a quarter of that*, and with just the GPS turned on, I'm lucky to get 8 hours out of a single charge.




* I do realise I can get longer if I turn stuff off, but I forget, and I like simplicity.


Dr.S at work - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
So important things to remember - when walking turn off the phone and location services, turn off Bluetooth, turn off wifi, set screen to fixed low dimness.

If you need phone or location services, they are quick to turn on.

This will save a lot of battery so for a weekend or longer you might not need spare juice
Andrew Wilson - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
It depends how you intend to use it. I use map and compass as my primary navigation tools.
Before I had a smartphone I had a garmin geko in the bottom of my bag in case I came unstuck. It was crap. Not user friendly and of little worth.
Now i have an iPhone 5, fitted with an otterbox case. I carry this inside my ortlieb map case with my map which keeps it dry. I keep the phone switched off untill I need it. I do not use a mapping app, just a simple grid reference finder called GridPoint GB. If ever wanting quick confirmation of location it is there. Works great.
The only criticism would be of the phone case, if water gets between the protective screen of the case and the phone itself it stops the touch screen working and then needs stripping down and drying. This is avoided by keeping it in map case.
Hope this helps

Andy
Andrew Wilson - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Dr.S at work:
Thus rendering it a rather expensive and heavy alarm clock? :-)
Choss Weasel on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Dan_S:
> (In reply to Dr.S at work)
>
> I bother with a standalone GPS because I keep my phone turned off in my bag so that I still have decent amount of battery left on it to contact the lovely boys and girls in red to come and help me out in the event of a faeces/fan interfacing issue.
>
>


Is your stand-alone gps a colour mapping model? I couldn't afford to spend 400 on a Sat-Map or whatever but an I-Phone is very affordable if it is tied into a monthly contract so that is a major thing for me.
Jim Fraser - on 06 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

Samsung Galaxy Y has been in Carphone Warehouse for 39.99 recently. I use Viewranger and Grid Reference apps on mine. Best get a larger memory card if you need a lot of map tiles with VR. Sorted.


Viewranger App
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.augmentra.viewranger.android.us

Viewranger Tiles
http://www.viewranger.com/en-gb/world-of-maps/premium-maps?country=gb#step2

Grid Reference App
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=net.blerg&hl=en
Choss Weasel on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Jim Fraser:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
>
> Samsung Galaxy Y has been in Carphone Warehouse for 39.99 recently. I use Viewranger and Grid Reference apps on mine. Best get a larger memory card if you need a lot of map tiles with VR. Sorted.
>
>
> Viewranger App
> https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.augmentra.viewranger.android.us
>
> Viewranger Tiles
> http://www.viewranger.com/en-gb/world-of-maps/premium-maps?country=gb#step2
>
> Grid Reference App
> https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=net.blerg&hl=en
>



I looked that up on Google and it looks like a really good bargain. Carphone Warehouse still have it for that price too. Thanks for that I'm going to go into town tomorrow and get one
Dauphin - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

3" screen. Be a joy to navigate with.

D
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Only a hill - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
I wouldn't bother with the Galaxy Y. It runs antiquated hardware and software and I doubt it will have the performance to run Viewranger adequately. It can hardly run the latest version of Facebook and the internal memory is miniscule.

Invest a little more and get an Android 4 model with better spec.
Choss Weasel on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> I wouldn't bother with the Galaxy Y. It runs antiquated hardware and software and I doubt it will have the performance to run Viewranger adequately. It can hardly run the latest version of Facebook and the internal memory is miniscule.
>
> Invest a little more and get an Android 4 model with better spec.
>

Actually I've come to agree. I realised the Galaxy Y has a tiny screen and plus is tied into a contract at that price so don't fancy it at all. I'm still looking. I'm thinking of the I-Phone again now or something as up to date with it's software etc.
Only a hill - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
Take a look at the Huawei Y300. Brand new in the UK market but very competitive specs for the price. Android 4.1, a 4 inch screen, and a dual core processor for 70 on pay as you go!
wintertree - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

I sometimes take an iPod Touch out with me as an addendum to paper maps. It doesn't have a GPS so it doesn't erode your navigation skills and the battery lasts through a lot of use, and there are times when a high-res "slippy-map" that you can pinch-zoom and swipe-pan is really nice to use compared to a big old paper map.

The App I use is Outdoors Great Britain with National Parks - you get the 1:250k nationwide and the 1:50k OS Landranger maps of national parks, and you can purchase and download 1:50k OS Landranger by region (e.g. South West) and 1:25k OS Explorer maps by county.

If you also have an iPad you can use the app and maps on that at no extra cost, and the iPad is a *great* way of looking at map porn from the comfort of home when route planning et.

Don't tell the anti-technology folks but all the maps also live on the iPhone in my pocket when I am out in the hills with a real map and compass, and the iPhone lives in a battery case running "Runkeeper" which records a GPS log of the walk, which can then be merged with photos from my cameras to geotag them - i.e. you can display them all on a map of where they were taken.
The Lemming - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill:

That sounds interesting.

How far off is it from a Nexus 4, spec and performance wise?
Choss Weasel on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill: How much capacity would I need? For example 8GB, 16GB etc or more?
Dr.S at work - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Andrew Wilson:
no - you can still use mapping software, camera, read books, listen to music, make notes etc etc - and then when you need to get a 8 figure grid ref and phone for a yellow taxi........
Only a hill - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to The Lemming:
> (In reply to Only a hill)
>
> That sounds interesting.
>
> How far off is it from a Nexus 4, spec and performance wise?

It can't touch the Nexus 4, which is quad core and the fastest phone available last year (I believe) but the Y300 outperforms every smartphone in its price bracket at the moment and in my view is worth double the asking price (at least!) Even the SIM free price is very competitive.

I set one up for a customer today and would say performance is about on a par with the Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini.
Only a hill - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to Only a hill) How much capacity would I need? For example 8GB, 16GB etc or more?

It has a memory card slot so you won't need to worry too much about internal storage. It's easy and cheap just to buy a micro SD card whenever you want.
The Lemming - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill:

Yes, but will it stack up against the might of my 18 month old Samsung Ace?

:-)
Choss Weasel on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> [...]
>
> It has a memory card slot so you won't need to worry too much about internal storage. It's easy and cheap just to buy a micro SD card whenever you want.
>

So would I be able to have say OS mapping for half of Scotland on an 8GB IPhone without buying a bigger external memory card or would that be too much for the phone?
Only a hill - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
An iPhone is a slightly different beast - it can't be fitted with a memory card and therefore you'd be wise to get as large a capacity as you can afford. Generally iPhones are more expensive than Androids, spec for spec - you pay a hefty premium for the brand. Most (not all) Android phones can be fitted with memory cards to expand their storage.

If you use a memory card for nothing but maps then 8GB should be more than sufficient, but most people will use it for photos, music etc. so a 16GB one might be more spacious.
Choss Weasel on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill: Is there any android phones you would recommend then? I've seen the LG Nexus 4 mentioned and I've seen some affordable deals on that in the shops.
PopShot on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to Only a hill) Is there any android phones you would recommend then? I've seen the LG Nexus 4 mentioned and I've seen some affordable deals on that in the shops.
>

This is getting a tad boring. Make a decision for yourself ffs!
Only a hill - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to Only a hill) Is there any android phones you would recommend then? I've seen the LG Nexus 4 mentioned and I've seen some affordable deals on that in the shops.

The Nexus 4 is an excellent phone - I have one myself. The most affordable way of buying it is unlocked directly from Google:
http://tinyurl.com/cmzg8cl

You can then use whatever SIM card you want in it, contract or pay as you go.

Otherwise, for a cheaper budget the Huawei Y300 can't be beaten in my opinion.
Only a hill - on 07 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> [...]
>
> This is getting a tad boring. Make a decision for yourself ffs!

Not as boring as you buddy ;-)
Choss Weasel on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> [...]
>
> The Nexus 4 is an excellent phone - I have one myself. The most affordable way of buying it is unlocked directly from Google:
> http://tinyurl.com/cmzg8cl
>
> You can then use whatever SIM card you want in it, contract or pay as you go.
>
> Otherwise, for a cheaper budget the Huawei Y300 can't be beaten in my opinion.




Thanks, I'm definately now leaning towards the LG
captain paranoia - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

Alternative Android apps to consider are OruxMaps, Locus and Maverick.

The issues, as mentioned, with smartphones are battery life and ruggedness. Both can be addressed with sensible use of power control and some sort of case.

One problem with more modern phones is the power drain of multicore processors; e.g. the S4 Active sounds really nice, but early tests suggests battery life is poor. Battery life obviously depends on usage cycle, whether you're doing route logging, or just using it like you'd use a map and compass, looking at it every now and then.
iksander on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: MMTracker
Choss Weasel on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill: One last question, could an ordinary LG Nexus 4 take say OS map downloads covering half of Scotland?
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Only a hill - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to Only a hill) One last question, could an ordinary LG Nexus 4 take say OS map downloads covering half of Scotland?

Id strongly recommend the 16GB version as it has no memory card slot and you'll find yourself running out of space on the 8GB version. You might be able to squeeze your maps into 8GB but it won't leave room for much else!
Choss Weasel on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> [...]
>
> Id strongly recommend the 16GB version as it has no memory card slot and you'll find yourself running out of space on the 8GB version. You might be able to squeeze your maps into 8GB but it won't leave room for much else!

Thanks I reckon I will definately go for a 16GB Nexus 4 then. What case do you use when out on the hills?
Choss Weasel on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: I mean like a protective case.
Only a hill - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
This one:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00A06Z41E

Plus small Ortlieb waterproof membrane for when it rains :-)
Guy Hurst - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill: The whole of the UK at 1:50,000 from Viewraner takes about 3GB.
Choss Weasel on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Only a hill: Thanks lots you've given me lots of really good advice and information!
Choss Weasel on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Guy Hurst: Oh really? Cool!
Guy Hurst - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: 3GB is what the bloke on the Viewranger help desk said (and their customer service is really good) and that seemed about right when I installed it on my old phone. It didn't have enough internal memory and so I added an 8GB class 6 SD card which cost about 6.
yarbles - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: I've used a waterproof bike GPS with OS 50k maps (additional to map and compass before anyone goes off on one... again). Would rather have 25k scale on the hill though so recommend getting this. I've found it pretty useful for locating my position (if in cloud / mist / dark). Not good for multi day use though as batt don't last.
PopShot on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to yarbles: I think the MRT's are going to be a lot busier if this thread is anything to go by. Battery dies and you don't have a clue where you are. Not good.
Rick Graham on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
Who needs to navigate? Walk to where you want to be then walk back.
The phone is useful for chatting to people who arn't with you.
Choss Weasel on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
> (In reply to yarbles) I think the MRT's are going to be a lot busier if this thread is anything to go by. Battery dies and you don't have a clue where you are. Not good.


I'm not interested in your opinion Pop Shot and if you don't like that then tough titty.
PopShot on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:
> (In reply to PopShot)
> [...]
>
>
> I'm not interested in your opinion Pop Shot and if you don't like that then tough titty.



There's no need to become abusive!
Only a hill - on 08 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
You're not a very good troll, you know. Try to be more imaginative and less transparent. At best I'd rate you 4/10.
grimsage666 - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: back country navigator. Will cost around 6 on android. But carry a spare battery
rallymania - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
> [...]
>
>
>
> There's no need to become abusive!

and in other news, you've failed to read the OP properly, or heed his/her further input on experience whilst you've been spouting your guff at everyone.

get over yourself!

anyway back on topic... i have a galaxy s2 and i have to say the screen is simply not bright enough to use as a navigation tool in direct sunlight. fine for the rest of the time though. i use the alpkit phone case and the touchscreen works ok through it.

sarahlizzy - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

I really like Motion X GPS on the iPhone. Can cache maps for offline use. Offers a variety of different map types (not OS though: you'd want a separate app for that). However, in many areas, the OpenSteetMaps are surprisingly good, and can be better than "official" maps. Just have the official ones too as a backup. OS in the UK, obviously. I'm going to the Dolomites soon and Tabacco have an app which stores their maps for the high Dolomites on the phone.

Re extra battery. These are a good idea regardless. Work on the basis that the extra battery is the reserve, and don't run it down. I have also noticed that when out in the snow and ice, the phone can get so cold that it thinks its own battery is flat and if you need to make a call it won't work. The extra battery solves this by making the phone think it's plugged into a charger.

Always worth having the paper map and compass to fall back on, but for convenience the phone can't be beaten, I reckon.
ChrisJD on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

Maybe not ideal for out in the hills, but Android "OS Atlas" (1.99 for full App) is a good resource tool.

Links to Google Play (UKC didn't like the full link)

http://tinyurl.com/lfwgbju
GeekyNick - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

I use a 16GB Nexus 4 and I mentioned my set-up on that other rather long thread but but I can elaborate more here !

The case I use is a small aquapac case http://goo.gl/gDQsY. It's fully waterproof and most functions work perfectly through it. I would actually prefer an Otterbox style case but I couldn't find anything suitable for the Nexus 4.

As other people have said you are going to want an external battery-especially since the Nexus 4's is non-removable. I have a 10000mAh Anker one http://goo.gl/LS6uI that will do around 4 full charges. It's 260g but you can get smaller ones that weigh less though this is often at the cost of capacity.

In terms of apps I use Maverick http://goo.gl/8HLac though this is primarily because it provides free OS maps. Viewranger seems to have more features but I find their 1:25000 map tiles rather expensive - particularly as I always use paper maps as well ! There should also be an official OS app for android coming "very soon" according to their email newsletter.
tony on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to rallymania:
>
> anyway back on topic... i have a galaxy s2 and i have to say the screen is simply not bright enough to use as a navigation tool in direct sunlight.

That's the problem I've had with my S2 in bright sunlight. Even when you stand over the screen to cast a shadow, it's very difficult to see any detail.
steve glasper - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

I use Iphone 4s with Viewranger software - quick to locate and very acurate (1:50 or 1:25 maps - 10 fig grid refs) - And using SARLoc buddy system it can ping my location back to my rescue teams Laptop search management mapping system so "they" know where I am if needed on callout
Heavy on batteries if your not sensable - so only turn it one when you want to know where you are or to suss out where to go
Charge it up in the car on the way to the hill - full in about 60 mins - it'll last all day if you don't mess about texting, facebooking, taking photos, identifying hill tops, aircraft flight paths and star consalations or actual talking to real people
But you should alway carry a spare power supply if you intend to use it for real/multi day trips - but don't drop it in a river otherwise you'll be well and truely up the creek without a satnav ! You should always take a paper map with you anyway
myserable old git - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: I use an iphone5 with Routebuddy mapping on phone and computer at home, I can plot routes on the computer and transfer them to the phone, I also carry an Anker battery pack which will give me two full charges but the best advice is to keep the phone off if not needed. I managed an 80 mile jaunt in the highlands a couple of weeks ago and managed without any problems apart from my wife using the find my iphone app to track me! 100% vote for Routebuddy it worked a treat!
Choss Weasel on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to myserable old git: I'm going to actually consider an IPhone. The LG would make more sense I think if I'm buying the phone sim free as it would be a lot cheaper but if I'm going for a pay monthly contract the IPhone looks as if it's going to be the same monthly cost compared to the LG. On an aesthetic level I really like the IPhone.
MikeSP - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: It sounds like i'm a bit late for the party, but I would recommend the Sony Xperia Z.
My friend has one and the screen resolution is excellent for navigation, the battery lasts as well as most other phones of the same size an as a bonus it is completly waterproof for if you drop it in a puddle (or your pint) then you don't need to worry
yarbles - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:
> (In reply to yarbles) I think the MRT's are going to be a lot busier if this thread is anything to go by. Battery dies and you don't have a clue where you are. Not good.

Don't agree. My point was it can be useful and if the batt dies you still have a map and compass. If you substitute a map and compass for electronic navigation you are obviously taking more risk and that would be a different matter. This isn't what I or the OP suggested.
Speaking from experience - if you are in the dark / mist it is one hell of a lot easier to look at the gizmo than try to locate yourself using features you can't see till you're 10m away.
xplorer on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

Why does a simple question consistently fail to get answered by so many.

All these noble posters, trying to educate people with their hypocritical bullshit.

xplorer on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

All smart phones have relatively capable gps, and all platforms have a variety of different software for navigation.

You can really go wrong, especially as you're already using a map and GPS unit. It's just another tool of the trade at the end of the day, helping you to stay on track.
xplorer on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to PopShot:

The only place you can navigate is Windsor.
Jim C - on 09 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: I have an iphone4 with memory map, but like others said it is ok in good conditions , i.e. when it s warm enough that the battery does not fail, or you don't need gloves, which makes using a smartphone tricky. In good weather of course ,your map and compass, mostly make the phone redundant.

I much prefer my Mapping Garmin's with ( again with MM, ) and memory cards that I can swap out various maps on, the batteries are long life ,and they are easy to swap in really cold weather. it s ' waterproof' rugged, and the signal is usually pretty good across the country.

The biggest issue I have with my phone is reception, sometimes my O2 reception is good, but it really varies to poor to nothing. I have taken to carrying a cheapPAYG on a different network, to give me better chance of getting reception if I need Phone call.

Lots of advice on here, none from me, I'm just stating what I use and why.
You will have your own ideas, and I'm sure you will find something that suits you.
Spilling on 10 Jul 2013
in reference to an earlier post about getting 1:25k, I would disagree. 1:25k on a tiny screen is hard work. too much info for such a small space. plus, it normally costs more. you don't need the extra detail because the GPS is telling you where you are so not as many reference points are needed.
I would go for a dedicated gps device myself, i know it works out more expensive but battery life is a big deal and i know some of the new sony phones are mega tough but a satmap or something similar is absolutely bomb proof.
for the casual day trip smart phones are fine but for anything a little more serious isn't safety worth a bit more money.
(if you do bring a gps, bring a super old phone, that way no worries with that battery dying if you turn it on. Who needs facebook in the hills anyway?)
OwenM - on 11 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel: It might be a bit late but have a look at this review. Not a smartphone but a tablet, bigger screen and half the price of a sat-map.

http://www.christownsendoutdoors.com/2012/09/nexus-7-tablet-for-outdoors.html
janeykennedy - on 11 Jul 2013
In reply to Choss Weasel:

If you havent already bought it, dont get an iphone. As soon as you have it out in a cold wind it will turn itself off... happens to me trying to take photos quite a lot, and I know of it happening to others as well. The camera is good though on a nice weather day.

I have memory map on my Iphone but I dont really use it to navigate. Originally got it to check I was getting my nav spot on when practicing for ML. Its useful for when you're driving as well and cant really concentrate on map reading to find the parking spot. Just stop when the red dot is there :)

I think the memory map app for android used to have lots of bugs,but thats probably sorted now, so an android could be an option.

The whole of the uk at 1:50,000 takes up 2.4gb.

Oh and the battery life is horrendous...
Choss Weasel on 11 Jul 2013
In reply to janeykennedy:
> (In reply to Choss Weasel)
>
> If you havent already bought it, dont get an iphone. As soon as you have it out in a cold wind it will turn itself off... happens to me trying to take photos quite a lot, and I know of it happening to others as well. The camera is good though on a nice weather day.
>
> I have memory map on my Iphone but I dont really use it to navigate. Originally got it to check I was getting my nav spot on when practicing for ML. Its useful for when you're driving as well and cant really concentrate on map reading to find the parking spot. Just stop when the red dot is there :)
>
> I think the memory map app for android used to have lots of bugs,but thats probably sorted now, so an android could be an option.
>
> The whole of the uk at 1:50,000 takes up 2.4gb.
>
> Oh and the battery life is horrendous...





Oh dear the I-Phone sounds completely useless for use on the hills! I definately won't be buying one then! Thanks for the warning. Maybe an Android phone will be more resilient outdoors?

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