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Old 11-24-2013, 06:05 PM   #1
NJDirtRiders OP
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Designated GPS unit Vs Smart Phone

What is the benefit of using a designated GPS unit

I use my iPhone with a Garmin app and seems to work great,
Im new to the GPS world and before I spend the money on a new Garmin Monterra I just want to understand why Im doing it?
With smart phones capable of doing just about anything these days I was just curious

Thanks
Craig T

I searched before I posted and didn't come up with anything comparing the two , Sorry if its been talked about already
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Old 11-24-2013, 06:44 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJDirtRiders View Post
What is the benefit of using a designated GPS unit

I use my iPhone with a Garmin app and seems to work great,
Im new to the GPS world and before I spend the money on a new Garmin Monterra I just want to understand why Im doing it?
With smart phones capable of doing just about anything these days I was just curious

Thanks
Craig T

I searched before I posted and didn't come up with anything comparing the two , Sorry if its been talked about already
If what you have meets your requirements why would you even consider something else?

If you want to better understand what the Monterra is capable of you could read my Monterra Review. The "Basic Criteria" section may give you further insight -- at least from my perspective -- in to what an Adventure & Dual Sport GPS should provide.
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Old 11-24-2013, 06:50 PM   #3
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The way the iPhone multi tasks Music,Phone,GPS and all works with any blue tooth head set makes me wonder why you would use anything else? But there has to be some big stand out reasons most people go stand alone GPS
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Old 11-24-2013, 06:55 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJDirtRiders View Post
The way the iPhone multi tasks Music,Phone,GPS and all works with any blue tooth head set makes me wonder why you would use anything else? But there has to be some big stand out reasons most people go stand alone GPS
Most folks need most of these features:

Basic GPS Criteria for Adventure & Dual Sport Riding
  • Supports Pre-ride Planning
  • Finds Stuff for You
  • Import and navigate Tracks and Routes
  • Record a Ride
  • Archive a Ride
  • Share a Ride
  • Portable, Ruggedized and Waterproof/Dustproof
  • Glove friendly
  • Power by Battery and 12vdc
  • Import and Create Waypoints and Display Their Properties
  • Reduct Stress and Encourage Exploration
  • Optional World Wide Maps and Map Types
  • Software is User Upgradable

Your smartphone/Navigation Software doesn't meet half of these.

But, like I said, if YOU don't need these features just continue to use your phone.
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:01 PM   #5
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Thank you for your reply, Just curious how may of the options you listed are available through Garmin via smart phone app
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJDirtRiders View Post
Thank you for your reply, Just curious how may of the options you listed are available through Garmin via smart phone app
You cannot import Route/Track data to the Garmin smartphone Apps.

You cannot share (export) data from Garmin smartphone Apps

You cannot do Pre-ride Planning (import preplanned Routes/Tracks)

You cannot easily add maps to Garmin smartphone Apps

The Garmin Apps do not auto-Archive your Ride (Track Log).
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:10 PM   #7
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Got it! Thanks haha
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Old 11-24-2013, 09:25 PM   #8
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Why would Garmin offer an app that would compete with their other units? They could easily make a "Monterra" app that could do almost everything that the Monterra can do.

You need to look elsewhere for navigation apps. Look into MotionX (both GPS and Drive versions), Avenza PDF, dual sport maps.
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Old 11-24-2013, 09:47 PM   #9
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About the only time I use my GPS over my smartphone is in a downpour
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:33 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRTBYK View Post
Most folks need most of these features:

Basic GPS Criteria for Adventure & Dual Sport Riding
  • Supports Pre-ride Planning
  • Finds Stuff for You
  • Import and navigate Tracks and Routes
  • Record a Ride
  • Archive a Ride
  • Share a Ride
  • Portable, Ruggedized and Waterproof/Dustproof
  • Glove friendly
  • Power by Battery and 12vdc
  • Import and Create Waypoints and Display Their Properties
  • Reduct Stress and Encourage Exploration
  • Optional World Wide Maps and Map Types
  • Software is User Upgradable

Your smartphone/Navigation Software doesn't meet half of these.

But, like I said, if YOU don't need these features just continue to use your phone.
[*]Supports Pre-ride Planning --Smartfone also does this
[*]Finds Stuff for You --Smartfone also does this, and better
[*]Import and navigate Tracks and Routes --Smartfone also does this
[*]Record a Ride --Smartfone also does this
[*]Archive a Ride --Smartfone also does this
[*]Share a Ride --Smartfone also does this
[*]Portable, Ruggedized and Waterproof/Dustproof --SOME Smartfone also are
[*]Glove friendly -- ok , but the new monterra seams to NOT be
[*]Power by Battery and 12vdc --Smartfone also does this with USB adapter - but not batteries
[*]Import and Create Waypoints and Display Their Properties --Smartfone also does this
[*]Reduct Stress and Encourage Exploration --Smartfone also does this
[*]Optional World Wide Maps and Map Types --Smartfone also does this
[*]Software is User Upgradable --Smartfone also does this


It's all in the Software, the dedicated GPS is just like a smartfone , it's a small computer runing linux-like OS or a wince like OS, it's the software that makes it all

Most people already have a smartfone of some sort so why not just test it ? spend a couple of bucks on a holder and a USB converter plus a app and find out how it works ,if you still don't like it or find it is limitied you now have the knowledge to use the phone as a backup in a pinch

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Old 11-25-2013, 05:57 AM   #11
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Designated GPS unit Vs Smart Phone

I've been using my iPhone 5 with the quad lock and waterproof cover and usb charger with no problems at all so far.. I bought the Garmin application which was not cheap but works exactly the way the Garmin in my wifes car works. But that's just using basic navigation maps.. I have yet to use it for anything off Road or to plan a trip.. Planning my first three-day trip on the bike and just wanted to get as much info as I can before the trip I have a few months.

Thanks again everybody
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Old 11-25-2013, 06:26 AM   #12
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be sure you understand the terms "route" and "track" and how they differ and how and where each is used.
If you plan on riding roads seen on google earth but not shown on a map as a road then you need to able to work with a "track" which basicly is adding a temporary 'road' to the display on your device.
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Old 11-25-2013, 06:42 AM   #13
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I've got a lot to learn but I'll have fun doing it, I won't be going to far off the beaten track to the point where messing up with my GPS can cause me harm this trip is just a test run
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:50 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by webmonstro View Post
[*]Supports Pre-ride Planning --Smartfone also does this
[*]Finds Stuff for You --Smartfone also does this, and better
[*]Import and navigate Tracks and Routes --Smartfone also does this
[*]Record a Ride --Smartfone also does this
[*]Archive a Ride --Smartfone also does this
[*]Share a Ride --Smartfone also does this
[*]Portable, Ruggedized and Waterproof/Dustproof --SOME Smartfone also are
[*]Glove friendly -- ok , but the new monterra seams to NOT be
[*]Power by Battery and 12vdc --Smartfone also does this with USB adapter - but not batteries
[*]Import and Create Waypoints and Display Their Properties --Smartfone also does this
[*]Reduct Stress and Encourage Exploration --Smartfone also does this
[*]Optional World Wide Maps and Map Types --Smartfone also does this
[*]Software is User Upgradable --Smartfone also does this


It's all in the Software, the dedicated GPS is just like a smartfone , it's a small computer runing linux-like OS or a wince like OS, it's the software that makes it all

Most people already have a smartfone of some sort so why not just test it ? spend a couple of bucks on a holder and a USB converter plus a app and find out how it works ,if you still don't like it or find it is limitied you now have the knowledge to use the phone as a backup in a pinch
Your comments are all true -- but finding them in a single App loaded on a single smart-device that actually does meet ALL of the criteria is not true. I cover most of this in my Monterra Review.

Most smartphones fall short in two areas: (1) If they are truly Rugged and meet a minimum of IP67, when you connect power you compromise the IP. USB ports are not rugged and will fail over time and (2) I have yet to find a smartphone that has a truly sunlight readable display while mounted on your bike.

But, as I suggested to the OP, not everyone needs/wants these features. He simply asked why folks use a dedicated GPS device.
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Old 11-25-2013, 10:15 AM   #15
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Does the smart phone need a cell signal for the gps to work?Alot of places on the west side of the usa have no cell service-like nevada.
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