GPS for Android - is there an app to rule them all?

Discussion in 'Mapping & Navigation' started by dartmouth01, Apr 27, 2017.

  1. dartmouth01

    dartmouth01 Noob4Life!

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    So, it has been a bit since I've looked at what is new on the GPS Android app front, and alot of threads are outdated (or hundreds of pages long), so I was hoping someone here could just point me to an app that "does it all", if it exists? My wish list is:

    1) Turn by turn directions for specific track (not just a route of the fastest way to point A to Point B)
    2) On the fly routing (when needed), going from point A to B
    3) Offline capable (maps downloads and on the fly routing)
    4) Ability to record tracks, download tracks and waypoints.
    5) Able to plan and set up predetermined routes on a computer before sending to app

    I can do all of this now, but need a few different products to do so. Here's what I use:

    Google Maps (Web plus App)
    -PLUS: Able to build "My Maps" with waypoints and tracks easily, and export them to KML. Then can use them in Backcountry Navigator app on the phone, or refer to the maps on Google Maps/Google Earth.
    -MINUS: Cannot seem to get turn by turn routing from My Maps, based on a specific route you have designated. If you choose to route to a waypoint, it will do the best route, not the already determined one. Not great for trying to moto over specific roads that aren't the most efficient way to get from point A to B.
    -MINUS: Creating a route in standard Google Maps (not part of My Maps) and sending to phone doesn't keep the route the same, will recalculate based on most "efficient" algorithms.
    -PLUS: You can download maps offline so you can at least do on the fly routing from point A to B without cell service.

    Backcountry Nav Pro App
    -PLUS: Full featured GPS app with lots of maps to download. Will record tracks, and allow you to download tracks/waypoints to follow along on the map
    -MINUS: No turn by turn based on a given track. No on the fly routing along known roads if you need.

    Rever (web plus app)
    -PLUS: Can plan routes on the computer via the web easily, and then see them on the app. Can record and share tracks and routes.
    -MINUS: No turn by turn directions. No on the fly routing from the app.

    Mapquest (web plus app)
    -PLUS: Can plan route on the computer, and save to My Maps section. Can send a link to phone that will open the app and preserves the planned route on my phone. I use this if I'm sticking to known paved and dirt roads, not trails. On the fly routing capable
    -MINUS: No offline capabilities that I can find.

    Mapfactor Navigator (app)
    -PLUS: I haven't used it much, but it seems to allow for offline turn by turn, with downloadable OSM maps for free.
    -MINUS: No way to set up route on the computer first and then send to the app as far as I can tell. Must be done all on the app.
    #1
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  2. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Bitch called me a feminist.

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    You missed Locus, OsmAnd, and Oruxmaps

    For the computer part you can use a webiste called Furkot for free, and it will spit out a .GPX for use with your app of choice.

    Locus hits EVERY one of your wickets I may add.
    #2
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  3. dartmouth01

    dartmouth01 Noob4Life!

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    Thanks! I am checking out Locus now. I feel when I last was looking at apps, Locus may not have had the Turn by Turn, but I may just have missed it.
    #3
  4. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    If you want offline turn by turn routing, install brouter also, then download the areas you need
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  5. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Bitch called me a feminist.

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    It does both turn by turn AND guidance which is sort of like following a track except it queues you when to look. I use that one a lot when I am in areas that I am familiar with, because I don't really need more than a ping one where my cut offs are.
    #5
  6. DaMonk45

    DaMonk45 I B Da Monk

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    For quick point to point offline routes I would also add Here.
    Co Pilot is also good for both pre-planed routes and fast point to point.
    Download maps for both programs for the areas you need.

    There is a plethora of apps that do what you want, the way you want.
    Give them all a try and see which fits the way you want it to work.
    #6
  7. kurviger

    kurviger Bloke from Kurviger.de

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    You can try the Kurviger App. There is a Pro and a Free version, whereas turn-by-turn navigation and offline maps (no offline routing though) are only available in the Pro version.

    Kurviger prefers curvy roads and slopes, while avoiding motorways and cities.

    You can plan route using the app or using the website. GPX import and export, A to B route planning, round trip / loop generation by providing start and distance. The app is still in the beta phase but already works quite well. Checkout the website and the free version, if you like it, you can add navigation, offline maps, and more by getting the Pro version.

    Cheers,
    Robin
    #7
  8. dartmouth01

    dartmouth01 Noob4Life!

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    Thanks guys. Im messing with Locus now and i immediately like it better than backcountry nav pro. The gui is just much easier to understand. Bcn has more US map options tho. Locus may be the winner time will tell. Lots of good options thrown out that Ill have too
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  9. chrisjk

    chrisjk Been here awhile

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    I am really liking Kurviger. The website has produced excellent results for me. It would be really nice if the app could connect to the site and sync routes automatically but that is hardly a major issue.
    #9
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  10. kurviger

    kurviger Bloke from Kurviger.de

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    Hi Chris,

    thanks for the nice words. Automatic syncing is not available yet, but you can transfer routes by scanning the QR code. Also you can transfer routes by GPX.

    Cheers,
    Robin
    #10
  11. chrisjk

    chrisjk Been here awhile

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    Robin,
    Thanks for the tips. I already use gpx transfer for many navigation apps and now Kurviger, but I had not used the QR scanning previously. It works brilliantly!

    I have no idea how hard it is to do but for a wish list, I would like to see Kurviger get an associated database - similar to Locus Map - where routes could be saved as TRACKS, and used again - or transferred to others.

    Having said this, I guess the most important feature of Kurviger and what will set it apart, or above other apps that try to do the same thing, is the routing algorithm. No doubt routing results also depend on the underlying map data so how limitations in that might be overcome is also an issue I guess.

    Ideally, in a magical world, it would be great to be able to set parameters that, for example could route along scenic roads (eg Michelin green edged), with fast sweeping turns, or hairpins, hills or plains, along rivers, coastlines etc etc. Oh, and keep away from traffic...

    However, as it stands it's pretty darn good!
    #11
  12. kurviger

    kurviger Bloke from Kurviger.de

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    Hi Chris,

    thanks again for the nice words. This is indeed planned for the future. Adding a more flexible routing would be also nice. We just recently added the flexibility to avoid ferries, motorways, toll roads, and narrow roads. There is still some potential for a more flexible routing though :).

    Best,
    Robin
    #12
  13. gts1000^2

    gts1000^2 Adventurer

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    Mapfactor is quite happy to open (import/read) GPX files.

    I think the Mapfactor's search function is extremely well thought-out (are you listening, Garmin?) and the on-screen layout is one of the best for use during riding (still not as good an interface as a dedicated GPS).
    #13
  14. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    If this is the case there is a website to convert Google maps to gpx
    http://www.gpsvisualizer.com/convert_input

    Thanks for suggesting I will check it out.
    #14
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  15. Davidprej

    Davidprej Davidprej

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    I use Ridewithgps.com. I plan my route on my PC and it automatically syncs with my smartphone (Samsung 7s Active). I pull up the route in the Ride with GPS app and it gives me turn-by-turn audio directions as well as the visuals. I have a Zumo 590 sitting in my closet and I've spent 40+ hours trying to learn it and basecamp with no success. RidewithGPS, works like a charm and it easy to use.

    I also had Osgood load a phone for me, but didn't have a clue as to how to use it once he had loaded it.
    #15
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  16. Dolly Sod

    Dolly Sod I want to do right, but not right now

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    One thing I would really like to see in the Kuviger app is better map rendering. Backroads easily blend into the background, especially when looking at the phone on a sunny day.
    #16
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  17. kurviger

    kurviger Bloke from Kurviger.de

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    I am actually working on this right now :) There were a couple of things to improve. I think we might be able to update the app in a couple of days.

    Cheers,
    Robin
    #17
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  18. kurviger

    kurviger Bloke from Kurviger.de

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    Hey Mate,

    have you seen the latest update of the Kurviger App? We added new map styles, that increase the visibility.

    2.png 4.png 5.png

    Cheers,
    Robin
    #18
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  19. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    Couple questions about your app. Is Auto-recalculation selectable, in other words can it be turned off so the app doesn't recalculate when you stray off route? If you can turn off auto recalc, if you stray off the route and bypass a waypoint, then get back on the route further down the line, will it just let you continue on the route, or will it want you to navigate back to the waypoint you bypassed?
    #19
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  20. Cataract2

    Cataract2 Where to?

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    #20