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  #31  
Old 20 Mar 2012
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my money

There is NOTHING that comes close to a ruggedised dedicated GPS unit for durability.

There is no trip I have done to date where a smart phone could have done the job ... no serious international trip.

For me, its not about software, its about durability.
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  #32  
Old 20 Mar 2012
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Challenge accepted.

I reckon it depends on the riding style. But even then, I'm constantly amazed on what you can get away with. As said, friends of mine mount them to their trail bikes and they don't seem to want to die. The map data, if you don't care about turn by turn, is vastly better either way.

I'm concerned about the bar vibes. Wait and see I guess.

Congrats with the record btw. Extremely well done.
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  #33  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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I do agree that rugged specialist units are best, but just to show my luck, my Garmin montana has died within 2 weeks of ownership and was sent to the Garmin hospital yesterday,

My iphone, I have used on the bike regularly, for 2 years, and it only had a fit once with a software update where I lost my music. The only thing that lets the smartphones down are the mounts. I got through 3 plastic iphone mounts, and that was on a road bike, on roads.
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  #34  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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colebatch

Hey Walter ,, welcome to thread ,,
Wonder if you count , since you ride in some freaky places,,

Tell us what make you are using ,,

As far as Garmin , the durability is a myth I am afraid ,, as mine went bunkers,, only after a month ,, USB port connection. And the pursuing horror customer service. Other testimonials below.

Our navi unit has to come in a total package ,,
Hardware ,, software ,, function ,, durability ,, dependability ,, customer service and economical sense,,
All of above is a right we must and should have as a consumer.

Whatever ,, comes after is a bonus to us ,,, And smart phones do indeed has so many
We are here to discuss the added value of the smart phones and to see whether it can live up to such a myth of a dedicated gps unit being durable.

Garmin horror stories ,,
Accidental Drop Test | POI Factory
Garmin GPS III Pilot ...horror story
https://forums.garmin.com/showthread.php?t=12001
Cracked Face on Forerunner 310XT | Applied Vitals

Will you do this test on your gps?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDtNCiBQ8lc

Quote:
Originally Posted by colebatch View Post
There is NOTHING that comes close to a ruggedised dedicated GPS unit for durability.

There is no trip I have done to date where a smart phone could have done the job ... no serious international trip.

For me, its not about software, its about durability.

Last edited by seouljoe; 21 Mar 2012 at 02:51.
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  #35  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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Fern

Fern ,,
Whether the unit is water proof ,,, or built like a tank ,, I hate anything exposed on the handle ,, giving me a silhouette and a questionable mount system.
I have always used the RAM , Big Box Waterproof ,,, to hold what ever unit I am using,,padded with soft sponge lining,,power cord coming out at the bottom then sealed ,,
Gives me good protection ,, even when I go down.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fern View Post
I do agree that rugged specialist units are best, but just to show my luck, my Garmin montana has died within 2 weeks of ownership and was sent to the Garmin hospital yesterday,

My iphone, I have used on the bike regularly, for 2 years, and it only had a fit once with a software update where I lost my music. The only thing that lets the smartphones down are the mounts. I got through 3 plastic iphone mounts, and that was on a road bike, on roads.

Last edited by seouljoe; 21 Mar 2012 at 02:52.
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  #36  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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Durability

Walter made a good point ,, for people like him, who does extreme riding,,
I did some Googling ,,,

This German GPS phone ,,, Nice ,, but only the 5 mega pixel camera.
Tak Wak delivers a rugged GPS-smarthpone-radio for the outdoors

Military Grade GPS ,, really rugged ,, Is the screen vulnerable like everything else?
AIS- Rugged PDAs | Rugged Military PDA GPS |Rugged Mobile Computers|Sunlight Readable Touch

Some more tough phones ,,Many are pumping Motorola phones as tough.
JCB Android Phone vs New Durrocomm Oberon Rugged Phone - YouTube

Tough Phone Test ,,, but are they smart?
Tough Phone Test - YouTube

Now ,, where is the right balance between brawn and brain ,,

Finally ,, tough smart phones..
http://www.google.com/webhp?hl=en#hl...iw=925&bih=623
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  #37  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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Good links there Joe - I think we've covered off that it very much depends what you want to do.

Quote:
Wonder if you count , since you ride in some freaky places,,
To be fair, this is an adventure travel forum and the advice people seek is for riding or driving in some extreme places - not just around their own country.

I just found this over on the Garmin Blog

Garmin customers giving thanks

I know it's from Garmin, but still, a pretty impressive story.

Also it's worth pointing out that my Zumo has come off my bike twice now. Once at 70mph on the autobahn after I didn't pop it on the mount properly and once at 30mph - again for failing to mount it properly... it bounced quite happily several times and now has the scars to show for it. But it's still working very will - that was 3 years ago. I love it because I can just grab it and it works - no messing about with add-ons, no messing about with cables, not messing about with worrying about GSM costs or GPRS or turning this or that on or off to make sure I don't get stung when I leave the UK... it just works.

Some more links

Consumer device waterproof test - Garmin nuvi 500 Waterproof Test - YouTube

and then.... actually you know what I'm going to stop. It's clear you don't like Garmin and you have an issue with them - whatever is said you'll argue with and I have riding to be done.... and then a . There are more important things to worry about!
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  #38  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seouljoe View Post
Walter made a good point ,, for people like him, who does extreme riding,,
I did some Googling ,,,

This German GPS phone ,,, Nice ,, but only the 5 mega pixel camera.
Tak Wak delivers a rugged GPS-smarthpone-radio for the outdoors

Military Grade GPS ,, really rugged ,, Is the screen vulnerable like everything else?
AIS- Rugged PDAs | Rugged Military PDA GPS |Rugged Mobile Computers|Sunlight Readable Touch

Some more tough phones ,,Many are pumping Motorola phones as tough.
JCB Android Phone vs New Durrocomm Oberon Rugged Phone - YouTube

Tough Phone Test ,,, but are they smart?
Tough Phone Test - YouTube

Now ,, where is the right balance between brawn and brain ,,

Finally ,, tough smart phones..
Google
Some interesting links Joe and good to see the hardware getting some discussion.
Anything marketed with the J C Bamford (JCB) mark is going to be tough, but you got me looking for more, and I have ended up looking at some websites I haven't seen in some years. No! not those, Toms hardware.
One of your youtube vids is for phones from 2005 but coming up from Casio is the smartphone equivalent of the G shock watch:-

Casio's Super-tough G-Shock Smartphone Looks Indestructible

There are also phones being marketed with the Caterpillar logo - will they be the match of JCB??

It will be interesting to hear if Fern's experience with Garmin after sales service for Europe is as bad as yours' has been for Asia, as outlined over on the thread about best value Garmins.
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  #39  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fern View Post
I do agree that rugged specialist units are best, but just to show my luck, my Garmin montana has died within 2 weeks of ownership and was sent to the Garmin hospital yesterday,

My iphone, I have used on the bike regularly, for 2 years, and it only had a fit once with a software update where I lost my music. The only thing that lets the smartphones down are the mounts. I got through 3 plastic iphone mounts, and that was on a road bike, on roads.
Fern,
Would be very interested to hear how you get on with the Garmin after sales + warranty (presumably) coverage.
This thread was started by Joe to explore the whole life cycle of software and hardware issues for smartphones Vs other GPS products (Garmin et al, although Tom tom etc are lying low right now).

Thanks for bringing up the iphone also. There has not been much in here to date about actual experience with different hard wares, and I think you are the first to mention the Apple product.
The mounts also; there seems to be some cheap products on sale, some claiming only for mounting units to cycle handlebars and others for both cycles and motorbikes.
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  #40  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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Thumbs up Tough GPS phones , Android based.

Hmmmm,,
So ,, phone makers are also seeing a niche ,, smart phone + GPS + durability + waterproof ,,
So this is the magic bullet we are all looking for?
Walkabout ,,That Casio phone looks mean ,,, I can see using that for the RTW ,, leave my Galaxy at home, for my casuals,,,, and really throw away my Garmin
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  #41  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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this is what failed everytime...
BikeConsole: iPhone bike mount, iPod Nano Wireless Control on Bike + Cycle Computer

only because the fixings and hinges are not strong enough, the button fell off, two mounts cracked with pressure over time, or worked loose. The recess for the charger didn't fit.

I think its designed for bicycle use primarially, and occasional motorcycle use, but not regular daily use. I still use it but it is held together with araldite and elastic bands!

This is another option
Wunderlich MediaBag

as is the ram box which I would consider if I hadn't have got the Garmin.
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  #42  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seouljoe View Post
Hmmmm,,
So ,, phone makers are also seeing a niche ,, smart phone + GPS + durability + waterproof ,,
So this is the magic bullet we are all looking for?
Walkabout ,,That Casio phone looks mean ,,, I can see using that for the RTW ,, leave my Galaxy at home, for my casuals,,,, and really throw away my Garmin
I am not sure it has come to market yet; that weblink, as at January 2012, casts doubt about a release date or even if it will be sold.
Casio do have this one in use though:-
Casio G'zOne Commando Review - Watch CNET's Video Review

Hardware:
Early days in this thread, but we can also expect feedback about using tablets to navigate?
Somewhere in here I think I saw use of a tablet in a tankbag on a bike, and there are certainly people using them in 4x4s.

Software:
I do wonder if there is any serious competition to the Android system and the Apple?
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  #43  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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Smile

Fern
Unlucky -it happens- don't worry- Garmin should replace it under its warranty very fast.
I fully agree with Colebatch & Matt- you have to be able to chose and trust your kit for the environment you will be taking it in-
Vibrations, dust, sand,water etc all conspire to wreck your gear. The Montana has been designed with that in mind and it is also IPX7 certified which is wayyyy more than my Galaxy can ever hope to be

and for those who do love their Montana, just a heads up that Touratech have made a mount for it-

You will still need the Garmin power/voice feed mount which all fits together. in the TT one. Solid.
Equipment, as with everything in life, is all about personal choice.
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  #44  
Old 21 Mar 2012
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I think I'm about to offend a few people here, but I reckon there is a lot of dramatization on the supposed ruggedness of their requirements and of the extremeness on rtw trips. Some of the most extreme terrain I've riden were simply the poor roads of Kazakhstan. I'm talking about extreme for the equipment which in my view is different to extreme for the person. I can find those conditions in my backyard to be honest. Even planning to look them up this weekend.

The biggest things that're responsible for equipment failure are shock, vibration and temperature. This is ignoring water and dust for a tick which are relatively easy to design for. Most equipment are standard pcb's with some sort of case to protect it somewhat. So given this I all comes down to the case of the smartphone as to date the same design constraints haven't been adopted with phones, likely for ascetic reasons. We're seeing some change in this now luckily.

I'm planning on giving the ultimate addons case a go for my adventure bike. Not to keen on putting that on my trail bike until my contract runs out of I can buy a cheap second hand one because things lead much harder lifs on that thing which is very evident with my 60csx since it's lived on that. Nothing that the altiplano threw at it could worry it , but since then it's showing some scars. Rider error off course.
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  #45  
Old 22 Mar 2012
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One Trick Pony

With a smile and chagrin,,,
Folks we all know what Garmin and others do ,, navigate.
We are here to explore ,, how we can maximise a multitasking, not only to navigate but improve our lives, while travelling ,,
How many here rides in North Pole ,, comes off the 40' cliff in Himalayas ,,,
And why would you drop anything ,, going 70MPH?

Well the US Army is going with Android and I-Phone.
Army Wants to Issue Battle-Ready iPhone and Android Phones

Let us find that ,, brawn and brain piece of equipment that will cover a range of riders..

Only three months to go ,, where I will do an "Android Only" trip. To see your views in action.
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