Geocaching using an iPhone
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Geocaching using an iPhone

 
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Acronema
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Joined: 02 Jun 2008
Posts: 68
Location: Edinburgh

PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2009 8:53 pm    Post subject: Geocaching using an iPhone Reply with quote

Hi Folks,

Has anyone any experience of using an iPhone for geocaching (http://www.geocaching.com/iphone/?

It could be an impressive bit of geocaching kit if it lives up to the hype.

Acronema
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Scotsbob
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Location: Hamilton, Scotland

PostPosted: Tue Jun 09, 2009 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just heard a couple of the podcacher podcasts and they said it was ok for getting the cache info but the gps wasn't as accurate as one of the cheapest garmins so !!!!!!!
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Acronema
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 10, 2009 10:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I suspected that the inbuilt GPS antenna and analysis software would not be as good as a dedicated GPSr, so less useful in areas where there are not many cell phone masts.

I wonder if the position fix in high rise urban areas given by using the cell phone network rather than GPS would be better than GPS alone?

Acronema
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Cookster
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Joined: 20 Nov 2005
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Location: Perth

PostPosted: Wed Jun 10, 2009 8:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My brother has an iphone. He only used it once as a gps but he said that when he arrived at the cache it wasn't out by much from his garmin.

Often he will do a search of nearby caches on his iphone and then put the coords into gps. It is useful for him if he suddenly decided to do some caches and doesn't have any cache details with him.

It's a good facility.
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wuthered
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Joined: 29 Aug 2005
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Location: Co Down

PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2009 8:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that Cookster has raised the best point about the iPhone. It can be used for 'spur of the moment' and paperless caching, (without the use of PQs) .

Even if you are heading for the mountains where O2 reception may be doubtful, it is possible to have previously saved the listings for any likely caches for future recall. A bit like having the GSAK info available, with some recent logs and the hint. This requires use of the Geocaching App which I believe is 5.99.

If you do have O2 reception and have paid for data downloads (10/month) then, when navigating, the Geocaching App allows you to overlay fully contoured maps on your position and that of the cache. I agree that the iPhone does not seem as sensitive over the final few feet and would always have a Garmin (or Wildlifewriter) as backup.

The 3G does not have a true compass, rather it displays one based on your movement. The newest iPhone (3G S?) is advertised as having a true compass which may well improve the unearthing experience.

Another facility within the App is the ability to upload Field Notes. These can then be edited and converted to full logs later.

I don't think I would buy one just to go geocaching with - but if you already have one it is fun to bring along.
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Tooey
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2009 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Am I right in assuming that the Geocaching App is used 'stand alone' so to speak. i.e. if abroad, having already done a query for a particular area and downloaded the cache details - would there be any roaming charges incurred whilst using it to search ? Rolling Eyes
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Acronema
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Joined: 02 Jun 2008
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Location: Edinburgh

PostPosted: Tue Oct 27, 2009 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have recently taken the plunge and got an iPhone 3GS, and must say that first impressions are very good - its a lovely bit of kit. Sure the GPS is not as sensitive as my Garmin GPSr, but it is really handy all in one tool to have around....having live connection to the cache pages, see logs and post your own log at the time of discovery is really neat. Having live satellite maps when you navigate to is also very cool and gets the kids interested.

The GC.com app works well for traditional caches but appears to be of limited use for multi's as 'out of the box' it just takes you to the first listed point (usually the car park!). I have not delved into the app to see if I can improve on that, and as they will be bringing out new versions I assume that this functionality will only improve.

Regarding Tooey's post I would imagine that if you are using stored caches then unless you inadvertantly sent a nearest cache query, request map data etc then it should not incur roaming charges. You can make sure of this by keeping the default data roaming setting to 'off' in Settings:General:Network:Data Roaming
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dunk090
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 03, 2009 12:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also took the plunge and am now the owner of a shiny black iPhone...one step nearer to my goal of device convergence.

I used it on Sunday to grab some caches along the Union canal while my eldest daughter was at a birthday party. The GC app isn't bad, I need to investigate it a bit more thoroughly, but seems to have a couple of limitations:

1 - you can't alter the date of your "Found" log (I'm a bit slow at logging my finds sometimes)
2 - doesn't seem to be an easy way to drop a trackable into the cache as you log it from the app. This is a bit of a pain as I have my cache counting geocoin that I dip into each cache I find.

But on the positive side it is pretty fast, not too inaccurate, and if you're in an area with coverage then it's cool having the caches pinpointed on a satellite map as you wander along.
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