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Archive for the ‘sat nav’ tag

Is Google Maps on your phone a TomTom killer?

Posted on 9th Nov 2009 at 11:50 by Antony Leather with 13 comments

Antony Leather
I've written a couple of previous blog posts about using my phone as a sat nav, and while CoPilot's updates have turned it into a decent app, it's still not a serious rival for a dedicated GPS.

Google's recent announcement that phones running its Android 2.0 OS will all feature free turn-by-turn GPS navigation, however, is something that threatens to change the sat nav market completely.

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Using the iPhone as a Sat Nav Part II

Posted on 5th Oct 2009 at 10:33 by Antony Leather with 10 comments

Antony Leather
I blogged a few weeks ago about my experience with the TomTom and CoPilot apps for the iPhone. In short they were all but unusable and I was left feeling pretty dissapointed, not to mention thinking that the iPhone simply wasn't up to the task - or even that it was faulty. A lot has changed since then though, I've got a refund on one, and the other has received an update which promissed improved GPS performance.

With no update planned for the unusable TomTom app combined with the fact it cost me close to £60, I decided that a refund was in order. I also decided that if CoPilot failed to work after its update, I would go for a seperate Sat Nav unit and make rude jestures at my iPhone. Luckily the refund wasn't an issue, and a quick email to Apple through iTunes saw the money back in my account a few days later.

The CoPilot update took a few weeks to arrive but during a rainy evening a few weeks ago, I installed it and went out for a drive. Things didn't start off too well with CoPilot's second test. Initially I was about to throw my iPhone out the window then reverse over it a few times. The red location icon failed to lock on to my position and showed me as being half a mile away. Things seemed to have got worse not better!

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Using the iPhone as a sat nav

Posted on 1st Sep 2009 at 10:36 by Antony Leather with 19 comments

Antony Leather
Previously, I've mainly used GPS for marine navigation rather than pointing the way on road trips. Having navigated busy areas off the south coast of England, I don't tend to find A-roads such a problem. That said, having had TomTom on my HTC TyTN II Windows Mobile PDA for the last few years I'm all too aware of how much of a boon it can be.

I've therefore been waiting patiently for a similar app for my iPhone 3GS. The iPhone 3G - which has a dedicated GPS chip - has been with us for what seems like an age but it's only with the release of version 3 of its OS that true Sat Nav apps, with turn-by-turn directions, have been able to start appearing. The latest of these is the much anticipated TomTom app but having used this and also CoPilot Live, I have to say I'm not just disapointed, I'd actually rather use a compass and a sextant to navigate as they're far more reliable.

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iPhone 3GS – the Apple tastes sweet

Posted on 6th Jul 2009 at 10:26 by Antony Leather with 33 comments

Antony Leather
I blogged recently about the fact that while I hate Apple, I was considering acquiring the new iPhone 3GS. The reasons for this was that I wanted something a bit lighter and easier to use than my HTC TyTN II which sported Windows Mobile 6.1. Well, I’ve now owned a 3GS for just over a week and in short, it’s everything I wanted and more.

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The iPhone 3GS - You can't beat them, so join them, but you can still hate them...

Posted on 10th Jun 2009 at 07:56 by Antony Leather with 48 comments

Antony Leather
So the iPhone 3GS is here. And with it, a host of new features that promise to make it even better and faster than the iPhone 3G.

Combined with the latest version of the OS (which will also add quite a few features to the existing iPhone 3G), it's without doubt a force to be reckoned with. Naturally, within a team with four iPhone owners, there's been a bit of a debate about whether it's worth an upgrade. And even I'm feeling tempted.

Now, I hate Apple - so I never thought I'd see myself checking the Apple Store for news on prices and contracts minutes after reading the closing snippets of information from the keynote at WWDC 2009.

I don't own an iPhone, or an iPhone 3G for the simple reason that when it launched, I already had a fairly capable smartphone that played music and videos, could surf the net and unlike the iPhone 3G, could also run any one of many true turn-by-turn sat nav apps such as Tom Tom - something I use quite regularly despite having a BSc degree in navigation. I also hate the hype surrounding Apple products, so if I do buy an iPhone 3GS it will be the first Apple product I've ever owned.

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