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GPS alternatives, you know that phone in your pocket

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by uphoto, Dec 8, 2015.

  1. 283Shovels

    283Shovels Adventurer

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    couple more questions from a greenhorn......
    Believe I've decided to buy a new unlocked Moto G and will not carry a cell/data plan of any kind.
    On my iphone I have an option called "hotspot". Put that on there for a trip to the Smokies so my old lady could use her wifi only ipad via available cell service.

    Say I install a weather radar "app" on the Moto G.
    I'm riding the motorcycle and decide I want to monitor the radar for a while, can I use that hotspot feature from my iphone on the Moto G to do that. (iphone in the tank bag, weather radar on the Moto G on the bars) ???

    I have no idea how much "space" the maps and apps take up that I would need on the Moto G.
    How big a engine to get for the GPS phone?? 8 or 16 GB ?
    I will not be leaving the US of A, or traveling for weeks on end.

    Thanks
    #21
  2. worwig

    worwig Long timer

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    Yes, the hotspot will let the Moto G see the internet. Though you will be sucking the battery down pretty fast on the iPhone too. Expect mediocre coverage in the Smokies.
    "Engine"? I have about 3GB in OSMAND, 2.8GB in Copilot, and 1.2GB in Locus maps. If you get the 8GB, the OS will consume some amount of that, I don't know how much. My Note 4 is a 32GB unit. I have 2.7GB free.
    #22
  3. 283Shovels

    283Shovels Adventurer

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    32GB ?? Damn. I only seen options for 8 or 16GB for the Moto G, and I thought it was one of the better recommendations for cell phone GPS units.
    #23
  4. EmmEff

    EmmEff Long timer

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    You do not need a 32GB device to use it as a GPS.
    #24
  5. zamram

    zamram Been here awhile

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    I received aMotoG gen2 8gb and put in a32gb sd card. I loaded in ossand plus , here , and copilot apps. I couldn't get the Here app. to go to the sd card but the other 2 did. I still have a lot of room on the sd card.

    I am new to all of this. As of now I miss my Garmin 2610 but that would overwhelm also.

    I want to thank all of you for all the info. I wouldn't have gone this route and would have dropped $500 or $600 on a new Garmin



    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I547 using Tapatalk
    #25
  6. worwig

    worwig Long timer

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    I also have a 64GB micro card which is mostly full.
    I'm only telling you how I use it up.

    As mentioned, an 8GB unit and a 16 or 32GB card is probably fine if you aren't going to be carrying a lot of other stuff. If you get the 16GB unit, you may not even need the add on card. A 16GB card is pretty cheap though.
    #26
  7. 283Shovels

    283Shovels Adventurer

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    Thanks.

    I'm a dumb ass on this stuff. Still don't understand on how some guys get by with an 8GB phone. Are you using this device for a camera and other "phone" things, or do you just have a jillion different maps of the Planet on that sucker?

    What other "stuff" might I need to carry?
    #27
  8. EmmEff

    EmmEff Long timer

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    Fwiw, I live in Ontario. I have the whole Ontario maps loaded into OsmAnd and Locus and it takes up less than 1GB. Perhaps if I was riding for a week or more, I might carry a larger map set but realistically, my rides are day rides from home. I use a 16GB Nexus 4.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    #28
  9. 283Shovels

    283Shovels Adventurer

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    Appreciate it MF. :thumb
    #29
  10. scootertrog

    scootertrog Jedi Fart Master

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    ^ Agree. You only need a lot of storage capability if you are going to store a lot of route/track info and download an obscene amount of maps, along with any other downloaded content. My iPhone4 is only 16gb and I have about 1/4 of the USA maps on it (both CoPilot Premium and Galileo Pro). I also have about 8gb of music and photos. No sense on storing routes/tracks on it that I won't be using within a short time frame.
    #30
  11. River-Runner

    River-Runner Been here awhile

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    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    ohgood -

    I really want using the phone or tablet to work out - better map information for what I want out in the puckerbrush than Garmin.

    Have taken your recommendation and bought a new, read 95MB/S - write 90MB/S, class 10 card to try - plus an 8" Samsung Wi-Fi tablet that per specs is some faster than the 10" one I was using(10" was too big to go in the tank bag). Am downloading the Caltopo map for Oregon and into ID & NV some to see if the card was the problem. I think the card is writing much faster than the previous card - we'll see how fast it reads as well. I'm also eager to learn to use the map "layering" ability in the Gaiagps app - Backcountry Navigator may have it too - I've not had the time to investigate. By layering, you can basically add the POI info off multiple maps on one screen.

    I agree, Garmin has 24K and 100K maps available - I currently use them, but I've never seen USFS or USGS maps available for Garmin. I find the Garmin maps to be difficult to use on the 64 / 62 series handhelds.

    More to follow when the maps download overnight.

    Thank you for pointing out the card may be my problem. I will owe you one if this works out.

    RR
    #31
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  12. River-Runner

    River-Runner Been here awhile

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    Worwig-

    I'm hoping the "crashing" will end with a card that responds quickly and accurately when querried for information.

    Does the CoPilot, OSMand+ or Locus app have a PC program like Basecamp to work up routes, waypoints, etc on a big desktop screen insteead of the smaller android device?

    RR
    #32
  13. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    Vector based maps of texas (roads only) = 100Mb
    Vector based maps of texas = 300Mb
    Image based maps of texas (roads only) = 2-3Gb
    Image based maps of texas with terrain or whatever =5-6Gb

    Texas is a good example of how file sizes can grow depending on the amount of data needed to display the map sets.

    You will not run out of room for TRACKS or WAYPOINTS with an 8Gb device. tracks and waypoints are tiny, a very long track being around 2-3Mb, waypoints being in the Kb range for thousands.

    If you store every picture / video you shoot on the phone, yes you will run out of space quickly. Much like the early digital cameras, phoots and videos are much better stored somewhere like the cloud, dvd's, or offline harddrives, instead of keeping years worth of pictures on the phone. I normally offload mine before a long weekend of riding or family time, so I can capture whatever I want without worry of running out on a 16Gb card.

    Stuff to carry:
    motorcycle manual (pdf)
    membership cards / insurance / DL / cc / important papers either scanned or photographed
    vector maps of the states expected to ride
    image maps (satellite imagery) of the offroad areas expected to ride
    full backup (disk image) of the entire phone, on the sdcard .... when the phone is smashed, replace the sdcard in the NEW phone and restore that image, badabing ! your 'old' phones stuff is back in 5 minutes !
    waypoints of interesting places along the way (campsites/POI's/food/geocaching/whatever)

    Killing off the carrier bloat and removing unneeded applications will save space, battery and unclutter the device.
    #33
  14. DRTBYK

    DRTBYK All Things GPS Supporter

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    And now that you put all of your personal data on that phone, did you encrypt it?
    #34
  15. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    just the files that matter. ;-)

    Good point.
    #35
  16. gadogad

    gadogad

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    I recently purchased a Moto G (2015) and got the 16gb version. The specs state that the 8gb comes with 1gb of RAM and the 16gb comes with 2gb of RAM. You may not need more than 1gb of RAM but previous experiences swayed me to go with one with more RAM.

    My Moto G will be used strictly as a GPS device with Locus and CoPilot.
    #36
  17. worwig

    worwig Long timer

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    If you are using a PC that is online, there are dozens of ways to do it. Some people like the online site Furkot. Heck, you can use Google Maps to a degree. I have a few times created very simple waypoints and exported them to my phone with a program call ITNconverter. If you need to do it offline, then it becomes complicated.
    #37
  18. worwig

    worwig Long timer

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    I have no clue what you may want to carry. If you are only going to carry some offline maps, an 8GB device may be all that you ever need. Me, I carry a lot of work related standards that I need access to, and non-work related service and parts manuals. Tons of things like that which I may never use, or it may be really handy if I break down 1000 miles from home.
    The current line of Samsung Galaxy phones doesn't even have a micro card slot. I would find that very limiting. MOST people don't even notice or care.
    There is no 'one answer fits all'.
    #38
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  19. BryceB

    BryceB It's OK, we know the Mayor!

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    I just upgraded from a Galaxy S4 Active yo a S6 Active. The S4 had 16gb internal and a 32GB microSD card. The S6 has 64GB and, like you said, no SD card slot. I'm going to try out the S6 for my "bike" device, but may switch back to the S4 and just use WiFi or tether it to the S6 when I need data on the road. The screen is way better on the S6 in daylight.

    With 48GB of storage, I rarely ran low on storage space and I suspect that 64GB will be fine. Pics and video took up way more space than my naps, POI and tracks. If 64GB isn't cutting it, I'll go back to the S4 with multiple 32/64GB cards and swap as needed.

    I think all of North America takes under 3GB for Co-Pilot. Co-Pilot is my normal app for place to place road rounding, but seems to do fine with FS Roads and such.

    If I'm following a track, I'm using OSMAnd+. It's map data seems to take up more room than Co-Pilot, so I just add/remove maps as needed. OSMAnd+ seems to rarely have house numbers for things I'm looking for to route to, so I limit my use of it to track following and recording.
    #39
  20. 283Shovels

    283Shovels Adventurer

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    Thanks. and thanks to ohgood and the rest of y'all.
    Sorry if my ignorance is aggravating to some of you but I really no NOTHING about this stuff.
    I've been riding many years and have never used a GPS, kinda makes me wonder why the hell I think I need one now. :lol3

    I was set to buy a new GPS for my bike and came across the cell phone ideas here.
    I have a phone, I have a camera. I have a job but I don't take it with me, anywhere.
    All I need this for is a GPS to show my location and what's around me. Also would be nice to lay a track to follow back if I get in an area I want to explore with no set intentions of where I'm going.

    I "think" some of this stuff is somewhat of a hobby to some folks. The route planning and such. I don't know, likely cuz I don't understand it. And a lot of y'all probably do way more off road exploring due to your location.

    I have a lot to learn to get to the route / track planning, importing, sharing, etc. part of the game.

    I need a unit first.............................baby steps

    I'm going for a ride, I can do that. :thumb
    #40
    ohgood likes this.