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Pocket GPS World :: View topic - But are they as good as a standalone unit?
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But are they as good as a standalone unit?

 
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TWHH
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Joined: Jun 26, 2006
Posts: 48

PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 8:30 pm    Post subject: But are they as good as a standalone unit? Reply with quote

Hi there,

My 6+ yr old Garmin 310 has very nearly been thrown out of a slow moving car too many times, but I have resisted as at the time it cost me small fortune. However I am now coming round to the idea that the sick from birth puppy should really be put out of it's misery.

I'm also going to buy a new iPhone when it comes out (I'm sure all in this forum are aware of the rumoured date).

So my question is this:

While we don't yet fully know how good the new iPhone will be, should I look to get a new standalone GPS unit (Tom Tom or Garmin) or not? Here are my basic requirements:
    Be able to plan a route on my Mac and then transfer it to my in-car unit
    Have offline maps
    Have speed camera details (I subscribe to the PGPSW dbase)
    My car's stereo is neither bluetooth enabled and I don't have a USB connection, but am prepared to get a powered cradle fitted if need be

I'm really struggling to know what's the best route (excuse the kinda pun) to go down.

Any help gratefully received.

Thanks
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mikealder
Pocket GPS Moderator
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Joined: Jan 14, 2005
Posts: 19638
Location: Blackpool , Lancs

PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If an iPhone is going to be used for navigation in the car then you really do need a powered holder otherwise the battery will go flat very quickly indeed when running any navigation application.

Don't purchase a powered holder prior to the iPhone5 being released though as rummour has it that the docking connector has changed design, if this is the case the existing powered holders that are available won't fit the new iPhone. I would also wait and see whether the new iPhone supports the 4G data rates, if it doesn't consider getting an iPhone 4 or 4S with a hefty reduction in price, unless of course the model 5 has some incredible new feature you can't live without.

In use in the car a Bluetooth system that supports HFP (for handsfree) and A2DP (Stereo audio) is a must as the built in speaker isn't really good enough to hear above the road noise let alone when you have music playing.

For speed camera support using any nav app on the iPhone you can run the CamerAlert app created by PGPSW, it runs in the background and works really well. If you load the TomTom iPhone app then you also have the choice adding the camera database to the app, although this is more involved than simply using CamerAlert.

Most of the decent sat nav apps load the maps directly to the device when you purchase the app so they don't need to use the data connection while on the move unless you decide to subscribe to some of the Live services - Mike
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TWHH
Occasional Visitor


Joined: Jun 26, 2006
Posts: 48

PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 9:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply.

I'm totally with you on the new dock connector and bluetooth comments. My car has no bluetooth abilities, so the only bluetooth consideration I would need to make is if I was to go with a standalone GPS unit (rather than an iPhone/Apple native or 3rd party app) could it act as a speakerphone for my not-being-used-as-a-SatNav iPhone.

What are the pros/cons of an iPhone based SatNAv Vs a standalone unit?

The smartphone fanatics would no doubt question the need for 2 devices, but a sales rep from Garmin or Tom Tom would no doubt wax lyrical about an iPhone's ability to work fast and hard enough to match the performance of a device that it fine tuned to act as a navigational device.

Are Garmins and TomTom's days numbered, or do they still have place in this iOS world (NB I am a self confessed Apple fanboy and am not remotely interested in venturing into the malware world of Android)

Thanks
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