Android tablet as Sat Nav

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Motoring
10 replies 7.6K views
r2015r2015 Forumite
1.1K Posts
Home Insurance Hacker! Cashback Cashier
✭✭✭
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Motoring
I've just got myself an android tablet with GPS and it is a lot better than my old sat nav, it doesn't tell me to go up a road that was blocked off 25 years ago, even although my old sat nav was only 11 years old.:rotfl:

What is a good, preferably free, app that will be better than Google maps, which only, at present, I can get to work if I put the destination in while still connected to my home wifi.

Wife thinks its hilarious I used a sat nav to walk to my local Tesco. :rotfl:

It's an age thing :rotfl: I'm waiting on my grandson to help but that won't be till the weekend.

Also, is it true, according to a Halfords employee, that I can no longer stick it to my windscreen, and there wasn't anything in the store that would do it, even though it is not a mobile?

The only thing was a thing to stick it to the heater vent.

Not very good in the winter when heat will be coming out of it.:(

At least I'm good at reading a map.
over 73 but not over the hill.

Replies

  • F1F93F1F93 Forumite
    366 Posts
    I used NavFree before I got my current car which has a satnav built in.
    It's decent, not quite on a par with Google maps but better in that the maps are saved to the device so can be used offline.

    You can pay for the upgrade (I think it's about 3 quid, or at least it was a few years ago) which enables traffic, but that requires data/wifi to work.

    As for the mounting issue, how big is it? I found a mount for my 7 inch tablet that used a windscreen sucker, but be careful not to obscure your view. I found that sticking it to the little bit of glass (that's usually blocked by the wingmirror housing/mounting) in front of the front window usually means that you only block the A pillar and not much else so no chance of impeding visibility further.

    If it's bigger than 7 inches, I doubt you'd be able to position it to avoid impeding vision massively.

    Also bear in mind that a tablet can be quite heavy, putting extra strain on the suction pad which may fail near the end of its life - mine did a few times.
  • Strider590Strider590 Forumite
    11.9K Posts
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    The problem with tablets or phones for satnav is heat, you have to keep them on charge when using satnav for any length of time, which generates heat, plus the use of the satnav causes heat too, all of which could eventually damage the battery, not to mention heat from the sun through the windscreen on a clear day.
    “I may not agree with you, but I will defend to the death your right to make an a** of yourself.”

    <><><><><><><><><<><><><><><><><><><><><><> Don't forget to like and subscribe \/ \/ \/
  • Cash-Strapped.T32Cash-Strapped.T32 Forumite
    561 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts Name Dropper
    ✭✭
    I use Mapfactor Navigator on my Galaxy S4 as my main satnav on my motorbike & scooter - for years I used cheap Tomtoms which were ok, perfectly functional but it was a pain making sure it was always ready to go when I needed it - the one thing I always have close to hand is my phone, and it's nearly always either fully charged, or my starting location will be somewhere I can ensure it's charged (home, work, friend's house, etc...).

    It's taken me the very occasional odd route (like diverting off a main road only to rejoin it 100yds later), maybe once or twice in as many years, but it's also taken me the length of the country a few times as well, can't fault it for free, and with open source map updates.

    There are more polished offerings out there, and I sometimes use them, but I always go back to it in the end.
  • missilemissile Forumite
    11.4K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    Only issue I have found is when one looses phone signal.
    "A nation's greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members." ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Ride hard or stay home :iloveyou:
  • bowlhead99bowlhead99 Forumite
    12.3K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Post of the Month
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    Mapfactor Navigator (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mapfactor.navigator) mentioned by Cash-Strapped above works with OpenStreetMap data which can be downloaded offline, so you won't need a phone signal when you're in the countryside or stuck on one of the many motorway stretches without decent mobile data.

    For phone or tablet mounting, the solutions from Brodit / proclip are good.
  • jbainbridgejbainbridge Forumite
    2K Posts
    Tenth Anniversary 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭
    You can download an area or the whole country into Google maps using 'offline areas'.
  • peter12345678910peter12345678910 Forumite
    445 Posts
    Seventh Anniversary 100 Posts Photogenic
    ✭✭
    Google maps has been improved, download any area, live traffic updates, live alt. routes based on live reports on traffic congestion, and you can save destinations. All for free, only problem I find with it is expanding the size of the map as the area displayed is too large while you drive.
    When you look into an abyss, the abyss also looks into you. Nietzsche

    Please note that at no point during this work was the kettle ever put out of commission and no chavs were harmed during the making of this post.
  • forgotmynameforgotmyname Forumite
    31.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    NavFree the lying satnav :)

    On the A39 travelling from Newquay to Wadebridge, NavFree said take the 2nd exit onto the A39. Err no the A39 is the 3rd exit.
    2nd exit is to St. Columb Major.
    Censorship Reigns Supreme in Troll City...

  • almillaralmillar Forumite
    8.6K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Photogenic Name Dropper
    ✭✭✭✭
    The problem with tablets or phones for satnav is heat, you have to keep them on charge when using satnav for any length of time, which generates heat, plus the use of the satnav causes heat too, all of which could eventually damage the battery, not to mention heat from the sun through the windscreen on a clear day.

    Eh? None of this is a factor IMO apart from leaving it in the windscreen in the sun. At which point someone will smash a window and nick it, solving the haet problem!

    OP, your idea is perfectly viable, and 'Here' maps, and NavFree, as mentioned above, are popular 'offline' sat nav apps.
    Consider though, that if you use an on-line one, you could benefit from traffic updates too, and of course, the most up to date mapping. Google Maps, or Waze. Either you could have a 4G/3G tablet, with a data SIM inside, or if you've got decent data on your smartphone, you could use it as WiFi hotspot, and give your tablet data.

    Mounting is do-able - Amazon will have stacks of tablet mounting ideas. It depends on your car, but I can never bring myself to trust the windscreen suckers. I prefer clamp type holders, or 'spider' holders, which can be customised to individial cars/phones/tablets.

    And finally, Google maps CAN work offline, but does have limitations. You can download a very big offline area, so that's all stored on your phone. The problem is that you need to have internet to actually enter and calculate a journey. Once you've done this, it'll get you to your destination.
This discussion has been closed.
Latest MSE News and Guides

Reclaim payday loans

Get £100s or £1,000s back for being mis-sold

MSE Guides

25% off Dyson eBay outlet

Selected items, via code

MSE Deals