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  #11  
Old 06-08-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingfool View Post
Your comments are correct for phones that relay on cell tower for location determination.

The Andriod phones have a true gps receiver, so the lack of cell tower coverage doesn't limit their useability for nav purposes (or for mountain hiking...). I understand the new, maybe more recent iPhones also now have a true gps. Although I have milspec Casio clamshell which has been an excellent phone - waterproof - after a buddy tracked the progress of last Sunday's thunderstorms to a T with his iPhone weather radar app, I feel that functionality is a must have...especially if you are sailing a smaller boat.

I need to figure out whether an Android is good enough, or even better...
That's interesting. So the cell phone has a completely separate satellite GPS receiver/antenna too, distinct from the cell antenna/receiver?

See, now you know why everyone calls me a luddite.

But I'm still trying to figure out what that would do for me.

We have a cartographic gps on the boat. It's waterproof and floats, and has a massive database of charts, maps, and other almanac-type information. It works anywhere in the world.

Frankly, our GPs unit has far more capability and functionality than we need. And it cost quite a bit less than an i-phone, and requires no monthly subscription. Any time I've looked at i-phone service/data fees, there's no way I could justify it.

Again, luddite talking, so FWIW....
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  #12  
Old 06-08-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSBN506 View Post
all iphones for sale today have true gps. the 3g,3gs and 4 all have it. Only the first gen didn't and you cant get them anymore except maybe ebay.
Most cell phones that have true GPS, including iPhones and most Android phones use "hints" from the nearest cell towers to start on the geolocation solution. If there is no signal they will generate a location it just takes a tad longer.
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Old 06-08-2010
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We get pretty good cell service on Gardiner's Bay, though it is terrible at my house in Springs. The nice part about the Navionics app is that it is loaded into the iPhone, so it works even if you don't have service. I also like the MotionX app. I really don't use any of them for navigation on the boat, as my chartplotter is far better and I operate under the assumption that the iPhone will leap into the water at the slightest provocation, like all other valuables.
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Old 06-08-2010
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I'm about to be sailing the North Shore of Lake Pontchartrain in Louisiana. I imagine the cell coverage is pretty good around there, though I don't know for sure just yet. I have an iPhone 3G, will be getting the iPhone 4 when it comes out, and would love to be able to use for reliable lake navigation instead of investing in a handheld GPS. Basically it would be one less toy to buy and one less thing to have to worry about for now. I would want some charts, trip tracking, and location tagging, plus plenty more I'm sure.
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Old 06-09-2010
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I've got an iPhone 3Gs and sail out of Annapolis. Coverage in the local area around Annapolis is fantastic, 5 bars from Sandy Point Shoal Lighthouse all the way down to the Rhode River. Haven't ventured further than that so far (my first season of sailing).

I use Navionics pretty heavily on the phone as well as TideGraph and MotionX GPS. All of them work well for the functions I use them for. Navionics stores the maps on-board the phone so there's no downloading required and the GPS on the phone works really well generally. My boat (J/92) has very basic instrumentation so it's a great tool for staying off the bottom when sailing around the Chesapeake!
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Old 06-09-2010
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I don't use my iphone for navigation but i do have a external cell phone antenna on my sailboat to boost the signal. I tether it to my laptop for internet with the best speed i can get. I also have two weather apps i use all the time.

I have seen some good tidal apps also that i will probably use when i venture out of my rivers and lakes.
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Old 06-09-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnRPollard View Post
That's interesting. So the cell phone has a completely separate satellite GPS receiver/antenna too, distinct from the cell antenna/receiver?

....

Frankly, our GPs unit has far more capability and functionality than we need. And it cost quite a bit less than an i-phone, and requires no monthly subscription. Any time I've looked at i-phone service/data fees, there's no way I could justify it.

Again, luddite talking, so FWIW....
My personal interest is driven by apps like this

iWeathr - iPhone Doppler Radar

and this
iPhone Travel App, iPhone GPS Tracking by EveryTrail
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Old 08-06-2010
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Missed Navimatics Charts and Tides, which includes Active Captain (accessible even without a cell signal). Sweet.
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Old 08-07-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSBN506 View Post
all iphones for sale today have true gps. the 3g,3gs and 4 all have it. Only the first gen didn't and you cant get them anymore except maybe ebay.
I have iPhone 3G, it does not have a true GPS, it uses cell towers for positioning. And iPhone 4 is YES.
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