Offline navigation will definitely be a core requirement of any app we develop but we hope to include tracking/recording too.
There are already plenty of apps that provide the capibility to record your GPS track. IMO off-line navigation is a much more useful addition to a routing application.
Thanks for your feedback. If we develop an app for route tracking, the ability to continue tracking in the background would definitely be part of the spec.
Roger Colin, that is called having a "blind" confidence in your GPS device ;-). Of course with more details through TTS including the next turn announcement. Locus can do that too (screen continuously off) as in the demo. This video is of course inclusive picture ;-) Hopefully now by a clickable (Ploatroute forum) link: Locus TTS instructions demo
I myself prefer when cycling to be able to have a quick look at the map. Phone on a handlebar mount and also without stuff in my ear. I prefer most compact TTS commands without extra chatter. Or the even most compact tone codes, limited to basic L/R/S instructions.
Adding clickable links in Plotaroute forum, aaach I forget to activate this every time. So I'll redo the previous once again as they should be.
grrr....Not able to check nor correct after publishment :-(( First time right ? Hopefully all is fine and correctly published now.
Locus tone code direction hints demo
Locus navigation by trackpoints info
Hello Willy - the thing is that I don't want to look at a screen at all
Cycling with audio means the phone is simply in my pocket with the screen off - that's what I want.
There's no need to look at anything as long as the directions are clear
The navigation talk is not much. In fact, sometimes when I'm out walking, I listen to an audiobook (Smart Audiobook)
and the book stops when the Bike Tracker speaks, which is perfect ... I don't need to hold anything !
Interesting what others do, though
Interesting Colin, to share your experiences and the used modes here.
I'd be happy to show you what I use as gps (phone) application.
- Dedicated gps or smartphone gps ?
Pro and cons ar wel known so we do not comment nor discuss that.
Well known fact is that a continuous smartphone screen on kills the operational time.
I mainly use the Locus app, it has screen off and a screen on at the turn & via commands.
And by a simple wave over the proximity sensor freely set screen on or back to off state.
By latest Android the energy savings correct settings during screen off are a necessity !
* This MUST be set correctly as otherwise at screen off mode the gps halts to receive the gps signals and trackrecording.
There is a lot of fine tuning to be done in actual android to keep gps apps operational during screen off mode.
The Locus app uses the turncommands generated by Plotaroute navigation waypoints.
At navigation select or the usual TTS commands or by loud an clear compact tone coded signs.
And of course there is a trackrecord available, to save and share as you wish by gpx by klm in the app.
See a 4,5 min duration demo video. Listen to the operation by tone code. https://youtu.be/4mOVtHeeFYk
The video black screen shown, is no recording mistake but it is exactly how it is operational in real.
Navigate by gpx navigation waypoints but NEW also by gpx navigation instructions in trackpoints.
Advantage: Very simple robust and discrete compatible mode and this without the usual waypointlist pollution caused by the mutliple navigatie turn or via instructions
The instructions are integrated directly into the trackpoints sym and even do use exactly that same sym as in the Plotaroute waypoints.
More info ? Here: https://t.ly/MEF3
* By an eventual Plotaroute mobile screen_off mode, you should have to tackle that same issue too.
I see this feature is now top of the list, so it might be helpful if I say what I actually do at the moment.
I plot using Plotaroute on a PC, but I use Bike Tracker for voice turn by turn navigation (doesn't need the screen on - saves battery).
The voice navigation is for cycling, but now and again I use it for walking.
Whenever I go cycling, I also start Ride With GPS on my phone. Whenever I go walking, I start Strava. Both sync with their websites.
This keeps cycling and walking miles completely separate and means I get to see separate PC screens for cycling & walking, so I can see if I've got anywhere near my target for the month ...
Strava and RWGPS also record the route. Sometimes, I export the walking route from Strava and import into Plotaroute if I want to do it again (to tidy it and maybe navigate).
Strava and RWGPS also record some stats which I don't really take much notice of, but some people certainly do.
However, Plotaroute being able to record my cycle route won't help me much, because I don't use Plotaoute for cycle navigation anyway,
so I would still be starting 2 apps - Bike Tracker + RWGPS or Plotaroute.
I can't use Plotaroute for cycle audio navigation because it needs the screen to be on (flat battery)
I could use Plotaroute to record a walking route, because I'm mostly following someone else so don't need navigation
One question ... will Plotaroute need the screen to be on all the time it's recording a route ??
Thanks for the reply. Plotaroute is already THE best route planning tool. If you added tracking/recording you would have the best app on the market. Now that viewranger is being discontinued there is a big gap in the market
Thanks for the suggestion Paul. This is on our list and is something we hope to do at some point, so please add your vote for this on our Feature Requests page (number 25).
It would be brilliant if plotaroute could record hikes using the phone GPS especially if maps are stored on the phone for offline use to avoid using/relying on mobile data.
Battery usage with a phone, especially with screen on, is a major obstacle especially when compared to a Garmin GPS, for instance. However, using a external powerpack can enable all day usage.
If navigation is implemented, the larger screen of a typical smartphone should enable a differentiator when comparing to aforementioned bike computers, and that is showing the map, route, speed, time ….. and an elevation profile for the next few miles.
The map does not have to take up all the real estate of the available screen, some can show the elevation, etc. This should be user-customisable.
A simple button should be available to switch from this customised view to just the map & route.
Just some thoughts.
Yes, I use Map My Walk, or have done until I paid for PlotaRoute, but it is a feature I miss because sometimes we might wander "off piste" a further few miles and then ant to revisit it, but forget where we have been.
It's also useful to find where you parked and started from :-/
Thanks for that feedback Ron.
I would like to see plotaroute record my bike ride with all associated data (location, speed, ave. speed, time, distance etc.) and also a dashboard so I can use my phone instead of a bike computer and so I also don't have to use some other additional app that takes the place of a bike computer. Get everything into plotaroute. Thank you. It's a great program.
I see what you mean ...
Hi Colin - we see navigation and recording of rootes as two different features, so had them as separate feature requests so that we could see which one was most popular, although I think that people often vote for things near the top of the list! Personally I feel that an app for navigation would probably be or more benefit than one to record and upload routes, but ideally we'd like to do both at some point.
OK - I've just seen Feature Request 26 ... Develop a mobile app for route navigation (following a route using GPS enabled mobile devices)
That probably means that this request is to record the unplanned path you are following right now ...
"Develop a mobile app for route tracking (recording a route using GPS enabled mobile devices)"
Is this to guide someone over a route previously plotted and residing on a mobile device ?
Or is it to record the unplanned path you are following right now so you can review it later - and perhaps save it to use again ??
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