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Old 05-14-2018, 09:50 AM   #1
Jarrett
 
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GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

I'm planning a trip this week and have my GPX file all mapped out on my computer for the route I want to use. My question is, should I find an app that I can use to upload the GPX file to on my Galaxy Note 5 and use that as my GPS? Or buy an additional GPS like a Garmin Zumo?

I already have a Battery Tender USB thingy that I can plug my Note 5 into and already have a RAM X Mount on the handlebars that the Note 5 sits in, I just haven't used it for directions much so far.

This weekend, I needed to get over to a road and I turned on Google Maps on my Note 5 and asked it to get me to the next town and it routed me there while relaying directions into my helmet via Sena 20s. That was pretty nifty, but Google Maps doesn't take GPX files that I'm aware of.

Just trying to figure out if what I have will work ok or is it really useful to get something dedicated like a Zumo.
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Old 05-14-2018, 10:21 AM   #2
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

I'd use the phone. When we were in Guatemala we used our iPhones, one using Google Maps and me using maps.me

RAM X Mount is a good thing
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Old 05-14-2018, 11:58 AM   #3
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

So long as you have cell signal or have maps downloaded, the phone will work.
Also one less thing to worry about not carrying around a GPS.

Personally in cars, I use a dedicated GPS (mainly because I bought it before phone GPS was out and I have free map updates).
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Old 05-14-2018, 11:59 AM   #4
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

The only issue that I have had using my phone has been weather. Rain, a case or a weather proof phone does that quickly. The heat however seems to be my downfall. For my 7 plus, over 95 degrees at a stop or in traffic and it wants to overheat.
I went to the phone after several garmin products and the customer support and slow map updates and and and.....well I will never purchase a garmin again.
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Old 05-14-2018, 12:35 PM   #5
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

I'm on my last Garmin. Can't hold enough maps to cover the country without SD cards, slow to update, illogical mapping functions, small screen and resulting level of detail , yada yada yada.

I need to find a real good pre-mapping / rerouting, point to point software for my I-Phone and then just go with that.

My Zumo 550 doesn't completely suck, but I'm just fed up with the difficulty of pre-routing routes to follow with the capability of tweaking on the fly. Which is essentially why I bought it in the first place.

YMMV

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Old 05-14-2018, 01:03 PM   #6
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Cool, thanks. I've been looking at the various apps and so far Ride with GPS seems like a good one. It allows me to create maps on my computer and save them to their system as well as download the GPX if needed. Then I can open the app my computer, open that saved route and get turn by turn navigation from it. That's really all I need from it.

It doesn't look as slick as Google Maps though, but seems like it will do. They charge $50 or $80 a year to use their service with a 30 day money back deal. I figure I'll try that and see how it goes.

I can download the GPX files to my cycling computer so in case my phone overheats, I'll have a back up. The cycling computer works ok, but it drops my routes quite a bit at highways speeds. I assume its because it is not built to be tracking that fast by design.
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Old 05-14-2018, 04:45 PM   #7
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarrett View Post
I'm planning a trip this week and have my GPX file all mapped out on my computer for the route I want to use. My question is, should I find an app that I can use to upload the GPX file to on my Galaxy Note 5 and use that as my GPS? Or buy an additional GPS like a Garmin Zumo?
I use either Google with offline maps or OsmAnd+ on my Samsung 7. One is a backup for the other. Google Maps doesn't allow uploading a gpx file created with Garmin BaseCamp, but it's easy enough to create URL routes and then use the URL with Google Maps. OsmAnd+ allows loading of GPX files and it works really well.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarrett View Post
I already have a Battery Tender USB thingy that I can plug my Note 5 into and already have a RAM X Mount on the handlebars that the Note 5 sits in, I just haven't used it for directions much so far.
GPS uses up a lot of power. Ideally you'd have a fast charger connected to the bike, otherwise you may deploy the battery faster than you're recharging it. My solution is to use a cable and a charger that allows me to do fast charging on the motorcycle:

Last edited by texxter; 05-14-2018 at 04:46 PM.
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Old 05-14-2018, 05:00 PM   #8
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Quote:
Originally Posted by texxter View Post
it's easy enough to create URL routes and then use the URL with Google Maps.
What does this process look like?
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Old 05-14-2018, 05:13 PM   #9
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Jarrett, I use Google Maps on the computer to create a route by linking points. This is only for one-day routes, as Google Maps only take a small number of waypoints. This generates a URL and you can simply navigate this URL or use gpsvisualizer.com to convert it to a GPX file. Here is a URL for my upcoming trip to New Mexico - I created it directly on Google Maps:

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Trut...m2!1b1!2b1!3e0
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Old 05-14-2018, 09:25 PM   #10
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Me? I use a dedicated GPS. Weather proof and ruggedized for the ride. When I need my phone, want do what I can to make sure it works when I need it.
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Old 05-15-2018, 08:48 AM   #11
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Quote:
Originally Posted by texxter View Post
Jarrett, I use Google Maps on the computer to create a route by linking points. This is only for one-day routes, as Google Maps only take a small number of waypoints. This generates a URL and you can simply navigate this URL or use gpsvisualizer.com to convert it to a GPX file. Here is a URL for my upcoming trip to New Mexico - I created it directly on Google Maps:

https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Trut...m2!1b1!2b1!3e0
Thanks for showing me that. For whatever reason, It's not working for me.

When I use Google Maps on my computer to make the route, it looks like this:



When I copy the URL from the browser, send it to my phone and open it in Google Maps on my phone, it looks like this:



The red line is an offline map that I created in an attempt to use Google Maps to route me, but in this case it shows the errors in the blue (URL) route. These kinds of inconsistencies are what keep me from using Google Maps.

I did a test run with Ride with GPS app yesterday and it worked well. It was only a 17 mile route, but it worked fine. It relayed voice prompts to my Sena Momentum helmet and told me when and where to turn. A few times I got off course on purpose and it alerted me. A cool function it has is that will tell you and show you how to get back to the course. Seemed like a useful fuction. Also, while doing this, the USB plug charged my phone back to 100% during the trip, so its got enough power that I don't have to worry about it running out while navigating.
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Old 05-16-2018, 06:14 PM   #12
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Anyone else tried Tyre? I've downloaded it, and messed around a bit, but haven't really tried too much.

I know they have a site (link above), and it can create GPX files to up/download, and I'm not honestly sure what else. I heard some good things about it, signed up (free), and then never did anything with it.
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Old 05-17-2018, 06:33 AM   #13
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Been researching this same issue.. Scenic app is looking very promising... And, it is specifically for motorcycle trips... So there are options to choose items like curvy roads when generating maps.. Also, easily download Google Maps from My Maps directly into app.. Also, can use downloaded maps for offline use. Also, will locate you and navigate on offline maps unlike Google Maps that will only show you the route but not navigate offline. Turn by turn directions. Navigate to address. And a biggie for me after using Google Maps, it will not redirect and completely change your route if you stray. It will redirect you back to your created route. And, options to allow you to start at closest point in created route instead trying to navigate you to the beginning of the route... I am still testing but seems to be the complete package needed for offline use...


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Old 05-17-2018, 06:57 AM   #14
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

It looks like scenic has changed a few things since I tried them before. I know that I have sent in emails for small issues that I have and there was very good response. I need to give it another run.
One thing that I have had issue with was importing from Furkot. I then have to zoom in and check the route to make sure that it doesn't loop me around or some other crazy junk. I have had to fix these routes my deleting points one at a time.
Rever just added nav to it line up but won't navigate the tracks or planned routes.
I like rever for the tracking and scenic for the nav.
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:07 AM   #15
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

When we rode w the big group into galiana mexico, the gps routes provided provided by others easily interfaced w. my android app called osmand. I used the free option, up to 5 free territory map downloads, including mexico.

I also use osmand to record my single track rides deep in the woods. This here is one of my recent recordings.
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:20 AM   #16
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Do any of you find that your smart phones aren't durable enough to stand up to rough or unpaved roads?

Two friends experienced the same issue on their ride down to Galeana last October. Both brand new iPhones had a failure of the video/photo stabilization mechanism of the phone and couldn't use their forward-facing cameras during the trip. Both were replaced or repaired when they got back.
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:41 AM   #17
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Smart phones are not designed to take that kind of punishment non stop when mounted to the bars of an off road bike. Just say'n...
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:45 AM   #18
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

Since Google broke their maps, I've been using MotoGoLoco to create custom routes and either download as GPX (for modification in BaseCamp) or direct transfer to my GPS. Free and good support. https://www.motogoloco.com/map/
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:47 AM   #19
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

The s6 edge I'm using is bomb proof and waterproof
It's all one piece Construction, no removable battery, no external memory card slot, Etc... I use it on all of my single track rides, and it's survived 2 hard years including a couple of hard hits where it broke off of my case holder and flew off into the ditch submerged underwater 4 couple of days. Still works!
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:50 AM   #20
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Re: GPS - Dedicated Unit or Smartphone App?

I've subscribed to this thread so that I can maybe migrate to a better solution.

BTW, I have a Garmin 590LM and that thing is SO FRUSTRATING! It constantly routes contrary what I mapped on Basecamp because of subtle setting differences that are buried in the menus. It's difficult to change routes on the fly. Lacks the satellite zoom capability of the phone apps and is overall very clunky to use.

I think it's fine for most US street based travel but really comes up short when your routes are less planned, more fluid and perhaps take you off the beaten path.

Oh, and I HATE how it doesn't follow the a route if your beginning and ending points are the same. I tjust assumes you're there already even though you haven't hit a single mapped waypoint.
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