GPS app that will allow maps/routing without a signal

ghanwani

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Original poster
Dec 8, 2008
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When driving around signal strength can sometime vary. What I've found is that this confuses the mapping program (I use Google maps) and it gives voice prompts based on the old location which in turn is confusing for the driver.

Are there any apps that can compute a route online but then.provide directions based on current location even in the absence of signal strength? If the 5s has a true GPS receiver (does it?), then it should be possible. (FWIW I have a 5s.)

Slightly off topic. I started using Google Maps because I had an iPhone 4 previously and Apple didn't have turn-by-turn directions. Now that I have a 5s, I'm quite disappointed with Apple maps and I'm still forced to use Google. Hopefully Apple's recent acquisition will help.
 

ghanwani

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Original poster
Dec 8, 2008
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Only car navigations (built-in) are able to account for lack of GPs signal.
I probably should have clarified better, but I meant lack of a cell phone signal rather than lack of a GPS signal...the GPS signal should be much more prevalent, right?
 

takeshi74

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Feb 9, 2011
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Last edited:

ucfgrad93

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Aug 17, 2007
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I had the TomTom app on my iPhone and loved it. It worked great on a couple of trips I took where I had no signal from AT&T. It is expensive but worth it.
 

Jimmy James

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Oct 26, 2008
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Only car navigations (built-in) are able to account for lack of GPs signal.
What?

OP, yes the iPhone does have a GPS radio. I primarily use mine for back country adventures where there is no cell service.

Tom Tom, garmin and others provide the service you're looking for.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
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GPS app that will allow maps/routing without a signal

Zoom out of Google maps to engulf the area you'll be driving. In the search field type "ok maps" (minus quotes).

The area on screen will be cached.
 

nebo1ss

macrumors 68030
Jun 2, 2010
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There is a free app in the app store that does exactly what you want. It is Called NAV Free GPS it stores the map on the phone which makes it a large app. Obviously it is not as good as Tom Tom but I found it quite useful.
 

jdecosta

macrumors member
Feb 16, 2012
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I had the TomTom app on my iPhone and loved it. It worked great on a couple of trips I took where I had no signal from AT&T. It is expensive but worth it.
+1 great app and the database in on your phone. No need to data connection.
 

ghanwani

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Dec 8, 2008
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Thanks for all the responses.

I guess I'll do some research on the various navigation apps. How does Waze size up?

One more thing regarding Apple maps vs Google maps. With Google maps the directions always go to my car's speakers via Bluetooth. For some reason, with Apple maps, the turn by turn directions come out of the phone's speakers. Has anyone else had this issue?

My car DOES NOT support Bluetooth streaming of music; it just supports Bluetooth for the phone functions. My guess is Apple's directions use the music player's functions, whereas Google sends them to the phone's functions?

I'm concerned I may face a similar issue with the other apps so looks like I may have to email the app's customer service to double-check on that. If directions aren't sent to the car's speakers via Bluetooth I am probably not going to use the app.

----------

Zoom out of Google maps to engulf the area you'll be driving. In the search field type "ok maps" (minus quotes).

The area on screen will be cached.
Thanks for the tip. Will the turn-by-turn directions also work in the absence of cell phone signal?
 

ratsg

macrumors 6502
Dec 6, 2010
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another +1 for tomtom

my wife has it on her cellular+wifi+GPS iPad. No data plan.

Does great with just GPS.
 

mpantone

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Mar 20, 2009
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Waze is an excellent free GPS navigation app, particularly the crowd-sourced traffic incidents. This is my default navi app. However, Waze does require a cellular data connection as it does not have downloadable maps for local storage. To calculate a route, the app talks to the Waze servers which returns the proposed route. It will not calculate/re-calculate a route in the absence of an adequate cellular data signal.

Both CoPilot Premium and Navigon/Garmin are paid apps which offer local map storage (like the aforementioned TomTom and a few others); these are more useful in the absence of an adequate cellular data signal although naturally real-time traffic reports will go missing.

Payware app MotionX GPS Drive can preload maps, although I am not sure if the app can recalculate routes in the absence of a cellular data signal.

The aforementioned Navfree GPS app also works with a GPS signal only (no cellular data), although it is based on the OpenStreetMap project and some of the directions are bad, and the map itself has a rather unpolished, amateur appearance.

Telenav and Scout GPS are two apps made by the same developer (Telenav), but I don't like Scout much since there's no easily accessible plain map mode.
 
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TheMacBookPro

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May 9, 2008
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Any nav app that doesn't need data for maps such as TomTom, Navigon, etc. This is a very common topic so don't overlook prior discussions.


It's in the specs:
http://www.apple.com/iphone-5s/specs/


OP isn't referring to dead reckoning and there's no reason an app couldn't perform dead reckoning.
I don't see how an app could have dead-reckoning, short of having a hook-up to the vehicle's OBD.

What?

OP, yes the iPhone does have a GPS radio. I primarily use mine for back country adventures where there is no cell service.

Tom Tom, garmin and others provide the service you're looking for.
I know it's not what OP was asking but- never used a factory navigation system, I take it? Those systems can function without a GPS signal, e.g. in tunnels, by using the vehicle's speed sensor & steering input sensor.
 

samiznaetekto

macrumors 65816
Dec 26, 2009
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Thanks for the tip. Will the turn-by-turn directions also work in the absence of cell phone signal?
No, only viewing will work. This feature is pretty much useless, since it only allows caching for small areas, just a few miles across.

And the design decision by Google to invoke this feature by typing a command, instead of providing a button, is incredibly stupid. Or they are trying to train us like Pavlov dogs to say commands like ok google, ok glass, ok maps? Idiots. :rolleyes:
 

c0LdFire

macrumors regular
Jul 10, 2013
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No, only viewing will work. This feature is pretty much useless, since it only allows caching for small areas, just a few miles across.

And the design decision by Google to invoke this feature by typing a command, instead of providing a button, is incredibly stupid. Or they are trying to train us like Pavlov dogs to say commands like ok google, ok glass, ok maps? Idiots. :rolleyes:
...or the feature is in beta, as it says right in the app's documentation, so they don't want average users trying to use it and running in to problems? Don't get your head stuck too far up your ass.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,554
1,871
Thanks for all the responses.



I guess I'll do some research on the various navigation apps. How does Waze size up?



One more thing regarding Apple maps vs Google maps. With Google maps the directions always go to my car's speakers via Bluetooth. For some reason, with Apple maps, the turn by turn directions come out of the phone's speakers. Has anyone else had this issue?



My car DOES NOT support Bluetooth streaming of music; it just supports Bluetooth for the phone functions. My guess is Apple's directions use the music player's functions, whereas Google sends them to the phone's functions?



I'm concerned I may face a similar issue with the other apps so looks like I may have to email the app's customer service to double-check on that. If directions aren't sent to the car's speakers via Bluetooth I am probably not going to use the app.

----------





Thanks for the tip. Will the turn-by-turn directions also work in the absence of cell phone signal?

You'll need to cache the Google map when you do have a data connection. So before your trip....
 

BenDoobyDoo

macrumors newbie
Apr 24, 2016
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0
GPS app that will allow maps/routing without a signal

Zoom out of Google maps to engulf the area you'll be driving. In the search field type "ok maps" (minus quotes).

The area on screen will be cached.
Doesn't work these days :( Search "ok maps" and you get Oklahoma! Caching works with Waze (though not 100% reliable and, of course, without real-time updates) and much better with maps.me – even at 30,000 feet!
 

HEK

macrumors 68040
Sep 24, 2013
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Maps.me app has worldwide maps you can load directly into phone. Can load areas or section or countries as you need. Then no cell connection needed as detailed maps stored right on phone. GPS signal to get you current location and you good to go anywhere you can get GPS. Cellular and wifi not needed. They update their maps regularly as well.
 
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cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
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Doesn't work these days :( Search "ok maps" and you get Oklahoma! Caching works with Waze (though not 100% reliable and, of course, without real-time updates) and much better with maps.me – even at 30,000 feet!
That was a long time ago. Now just click on "offline areas" to download sections of Google Maps for offline use.
 

rovolisgiorgos

macrumors newbie
Jun 29, 2015
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Noone has stated the obvious, HERE Maps. You can download whole countries offline, with resonable storage amount. Internet (cell signal) not required. Not to mention, totally free.
 
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gaanee

macrumors 65816
Dec 8, 2011
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I used Navigon app sometime back on my 3GS, it worked without needing data while driving. However in later versions of iOS and the app, they or Apple made changes in how the GPS works and it stopped working without data. I went to the Apple store and the genius there told navigation apps require data connection to work and wasn't aware of any apps that navigate off-line.
Now many apps allow you to download off-line maps, but does it work for navigation while driving?
 

HEK

macrumors 68040
Sep 24, 2013
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US Eastern time zone
I used Navigon app sometime back on my 3GS, it worked without needing data while driving. However in later versions of iOS and the app, they or Apple made changes in how the GPS works and it stopped working without data. I went to the Apple store and the genius there told navigation apps require data connection to work and wasn't aware of any apps that navigate off-line.
Now many apps allow you to download off-line maps, but does it work for navigation while driving?
Maps.me does
 

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