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Sat Nav Deciding Factor

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by arkwright, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. arkwright

    arkwright Member
    Thread Starter

    Hi everyone,

    I have been a lifelong Nokia user and next week is phone upgrade time. I have looked at the new offerings by Nokia, but am somewhat disillusioned with the new operating system plus the announcement that they are ditching Symbian and partnering up with Windows.

    So I decided to look at alternatives. Having an inherent dislike for the Apple corporation, I've spent the past couple of weeks exploring Android phones and the Desire seems to be the one everyone raves about.

    So why have I still not decided?

    Well basically, I use my Nokia as my Sat Nav device as much as I do as a phone and I have to confess, it operates faultlessly. The major advantage is that it doesn't require data download from the internet to work which I believe is the case with the Desire.

    So here's my question:

    Can the Desire operate as a competent Sat Nav system without having to continually download data from the internet. If I can overcome this issue, then I think I'll be signing up for a desire next week.

    Many thanks



  2. PCNutt3r

    PCNutt3r Newbie

    Welcome to the forums:cool:

    Google maps downloads data but is pretty good. There are a couple of satnavs on android one of which is copilot and the one i use and it doesn't download data and it has speed camera alerts etc.

    You won't be disappointed.
  3. RedBob62

    RedBob62 Member

    As you will see from some other recent posts, the desire features an excellent free sat nav from google. This does require data access to work but the amount of data you use is minimal.I recently drove from dorset to north london which took about 2.5 hours but only used about 2 mb of data.

    Is there a reason why data access is such an issue? To get the best from a phone like the desire you are going to access data so will probably be on a monthly contact with data allowance.the minimum you normally get is 500 mb so in this context the amount of data used by the sat nav is minimal. If you did the equivalent of my journey every day it would still use under 10% of the allowance.

    Aside from that, I was always a nokia user until last may when I got the desire. Never regretted the decision once.:)
  4. chris 290

    chris 290 Android Enthusiast

    Google maps does require a data connection, you can do it over wifi before you leave. You can purchase a dedicated satnav app, that's the only way to have maps stored on your sd card. google maps does cache some data after the more recent update but its still no replacement for a dedicated satnav.

    Does work pretty well though.
  5. RedBob62

    RedBob62 Member

    I use the say nav on the desire all the time as oppose to a dedicated sat nav and have yet to find anything significant that it cannot do.it does not have some of the features of a commercial system like changing the voice but for the basics of getting from a to b with no fuss it does the job really well.
  6. arkwright

    arkwright Member
    Thread Starter

    Thanks for the replies guys.

    I had just assumed that it would use considerable amounts of data to run as a Sat Nav, but that doesn't seem to be the case.

    I think I'm pretty much sold on the Desire, but still finding it difficult to wrench myself away from Nokia. Having never had any other make of phone and never having had any problems ever with any of my Nokias (and I've had a fair few) it's proving to be a much more difficult decision than I anticipated.

    The new N8 has so much going for it other than the OS, I just want to make sure the Desire will do everything I want it to do and that I know a Nokia will do.
  7. chris 290

    chris 290 Android Enthusiast

    My Tom Tom has expected time of arrival, speed camera alert, speed info etc

    I agree google maps is great, I have used it myself a number of times, but if I was using it daily for work then I would prefer a satnav where maps are stored. I guess it depends on usage.

    Also :) im on 3 network so if im in the countryside, I tend to lose data connection alot.

    Google as a primary satnav has its flaws. Not trying to discourage op from buying a desire, just trying to be informative so that an informed decision is reached knowing the pros and cons.
  8. RedBob62

    RedBob62 Member

    I must admit chris that I've never had a dedicated sat nav so I probably do not know what I am missing in terms of functionality. Am a bit of a desire fan as well so I may see things via rose colored spectacles.

    I was previously a nokia stalwart owning a 6350, n70 and an n82. They were all good phones in their time but have no regrets about going over to htc.
  9. chris 290

    chris 290 Android Enthusiast

    No problem, I agree the desire is brilliant, best phone by far that I ever have owned.

    If the op wants a satnav on the phone that has stored maps then their are options on the market place so for that reason alone I would recommend buying the desire and using that option if data is an issue.

    Thanks for your nice reply :)

  10. williamj1

    williamj1 Android Enthusiast

  11. speedycolzalez

    speedycolzalez Android Enthusiast

    Overall, CoPilot is about the best SatNav on Android. However, every so often they release an update that breaks it (last but one update, put everything back in internal memory and the GPS fix went haywire). Then you wait a couple of weeks until they release another update that fixes it. Moral of the story, keep a backup of the previous version :D

    KING LUFF Well-Known Member

    I would personally wait a couple of months and get a dual core alternative to the Desire. I have had mine for 8-9 months now but to ensure that you are going to have a current up to date phone i would hold on to see what happens this week at MWC.

    Although the Desire is the best phone i have ever used, i wouldn't bet money that it gets updated beyond 2.2

    p.s. the Sat Nav is bloody fantastic!!!!!:D
  13. spile

    spile Android Enthusiast

  14. Gisbourne

    Gisbourne Member

    Desire is a good phone and Google SatNav is great, however, the one major ball ache is the internal memory which is pretty limited unless you're going to root. My advice would be to go for the Desire HD although even this isn't fantastic at 768 MB (Desire only has 576 MB).

    Just my .02$...

  15. Ferd

    Ferd Lurker

    Also note that Google Navigation allows you to overlay current traffic conditions on main routes (red, orange, and green) for free and also pretty accurate. Last time I checked - over a year ago admittedly - TomTom used to charge a subscription fee for this useful service.
  16. ali g

    ali g Lurker

    Can someone explain why CoPilot Live is better than Google Navigation? Do you get all the maps on the phone meaning that you don't need a data connection?

    What are CoPilots advantages?


  17. stueyboy

    stueyboy Member

    The google satnav on the desire is bloody marvelous IMHO. Almost the best thing about the phone. It integrates very well with google maps and contact etc. If you're looking for a supermarket in an unfamiliar place, just search in google maps, find the one closest to you then navigate to it.

    I organised a trip to the outer hebrides last year and set up a custom map on my pc using google maps which I then sent to everyone going on the trip. The other folk on the journey just had to click on each destination on their phone and navigate to it.

    As far as downloading the data for the navigation, I quite often go to darkest Wales where you would expect there to be poor reception, especially through Snodonia but the satnav has got me there every time without cutting out. Data use is pretty low.

    Only thing I notice is the phone gets pretty hot while on navigation as it probably uses a fair amount of processing power.

    EDIT: related to the traffic post above, I find that the google traffic view is more accurtate than the RAC app on the phone and it has got me out of a few nasty queues in the past
  18. matttye

    matttye Android Expert

    The Desire HD/Desire Z both have data-less sat navs.

    You can root your Desire to get the same software; I've got the Desire with a Desire HD ROM installed and have the sat nav software. To be honest I've never tried it out as I have a tom tom, but I assume it works okay as the GPS and Google Maps app work fine.

    The Desire S (due out somewhere around May) will also have the data-less navigation software.
  19. Jason71

    Jason71 Well-Known Member

    Someone kind of already said this above but much as I like my Desire I would not get one now because it is is nearing the end of it life and although the replacement doesn't look that special I wouldn't want to have the current model for another 2 years from now.
    Having said that if price is an issue there are cracking deals to be had on the current model like
  20. speedycolzalez

    speedycolzalez Android Enthusiast

    For me;

    1. it downloads the maps to the phone at install time so you're not dependant on having a decent 3G phone signal or Mb left in your data plan.

    2. you can add speed camera alerts.
    ali g likes this.
  21. spile

    spile Android Enthusiast

    3. You can add POIs - speed camera, good beer guide etc etc
  22. savy

    savy Newbie

    To be honest I prefer Nokia navigation to Google. Sometimes the navigation on my Desire seems to lag a bit in comparison. I tend to notice it most on roundabouts. Because of this I'm considering getting co pilot or similar, with maps stored on the memory card.
  23. Usta

    Usta Android Expert

    Nokia OVI Maps is not bad, but it has certain problems, like no auto-fill in search field, a bad way to view the overall route, an issue to import your own POIs (speedcams), lack of signposts, etc. Even when I had a Nokia phone previously, I used Sygic Maps for Sat Nav.

    Google Maps has its own issues. The obligatory data connectivity is a big issue for those without data plan. Even if you have a data plan, navigating in abroad (I cross borders in Europe easily) is very costly. Finally, importing a database of POIs is a problem.

    Dedicated SatNav packages are my preference. I use Sygic, because of its low impact on internal memory. It works fine on Desire.

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