GPS Question

Discussion in 'iPad Accessories for iPAD 1, 2 and 3' started by RickEvans, Oct 7, 2010.

  1. RickEvans

    RickEvans iPF Noob

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    My Ipad does not have 3G so many of the functions that require GPS type connectivity don't work. With a PC, you can buy small GPS units that plug into the USB port. You can then, for example, use maps on your computer with your GPS to find out where you are and where you're going. My question is whether there's something like that which can be used on the Ipad? Any ideas? Thanks for taking the time to help me.
     
  2. deckyon

    deckyon iPad Junkie

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    I have not tried it yet, but you might be able to use a bluetooth GPS puck to do this. I do not think you would be able to use a USB version. Also, even with bluetooth, you may have to jailbreak the iPad for it to work.
     
  3. OzzieB

    OzzieB iPF Novice

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    Yes, you'll need to be jailbroken. You will also need some sort of internet connection otherwise you may not be able to get maps on the fly depending on the software you are using.
     
  4. Wakawaka

    Wakawaka iPad Junkie

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    Yeah unless you have pre loaded maps you will need Internet.

    That's why I bought the 3G for just incase. Found out in the end I did need 3G and a little gps.
     
  5. deckyon

    deckyon iPad Junkie

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    If you have the 3G, then there is a built-in GPS, you should not need a separate GPS puck.
     
  6. RickEvans

    RickEvans iPF Noob

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    Thanks

    I really appreciate all your comments. Having owned a PC forever, I'm new to Apple and find myself wondering why they make it so hard to use accessories on the Ipad. Not having a USB port is a major stumbling block in my view. Wish I had the 3G capability with mine but, alas, it doesn't. Looks like there's no easy way to hook up to an exterior GPS unit without jailbreaking my Ipad which is something I have no idea how to do. thanks anyway for your help.
     
  7. deckyon

    deckyon iPad Junkie

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    Even if it had a USB port, you would more than likely have to Jailbreak it.
     
  8. Wakawaka

    Wakawaka iPad Junkie

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    Craigslist.org

    Guys all over Denver here are JB ipads an iPhones for $20. My guy JB my iPhone In less than 10 minutes at local starbucks (go figure):p
     
  9. Al Rogers

    Al Rogers iPad Enthusiast

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    There is an app you can download for your iPad WiFi but I was told its not so accurate as the 3G Ipad,its called Motion X GPS HD.
    I am using it and its very good but I have the 3G.

    Al.
     
  10. tzimisce

    tzimisce iPad Addict

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    It also depends on where you're using it. The WiFi-only iPad, like the original iPhone, does not have GPS (or A-GPS), but rather uses Skyhook, which triangulates from known WiFi base station locations sending out pings to these stations and calculating how long it takes for the signal response to work out your location.

    This means it will be very accurate in an urban location with lots of WiFi base stations, and in some instances will be more accurate than satellite GPS because it'll work even when you're surrounded by tall buildings, tree cover or even underground (which degrades satellite GPS navigation.) As you head out into the country where WiFi stations are sparse, its accuracy will decrease or stop altogether.

    On the other hand, the iPhone 3 and 4 series, and iPad WiFi+3G all have A-GPS, which is genuine GPS -- plus because it's "assisted", it works even better than regular GPS as it uses other cellular information to obtain your location faster, in addition to regular satellite signals. (By definition, any smartphone with GPS uses A-GPS, for obvious reasons.) Presumably these also have Skyhook, so the GPS on these devices will also work when you're underground, obstructed by tall buildings, etc.

    As for loading maps, it is worthwhile to remember that even though the device has a big storage capacity (16, 32, 64 GB), its actual RAM is comparatively smaller, and thus a location-finding app using huge pre-loaded maps can cause memory issues. (The Apple OS will kill any app when memory runs low, making it look like the app has crashed.)

    With something like Google Maps, however, the map data has been processed and broken down into smaller "tiles" which are easier to handle, but the tradeoff is that apart from what has been cached, the maps are not preloaded onto the device, so you'll need a good data connection to download new "tiles" as you move around.

     
  11. Al Rogers

    Al Rogers iPad Enthusiast

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    Thanks tzimisce for the informative breakdown of the GPS and Wi Fi systems. I hope Rich Evans returns to read it.

    Al.
     
  12. Nicholas76

    Nicholas76 iPF Novice

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    very informative, heh.
     
  13. RickEvans

    RickEvans iPF Noob

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    Thanks even more

    I really appreciate this input. I think I'm finally starting to get it. It's just too bad the Ipad doesn't have the functionality of a PC where you can plug in something like a small, portable GPS (like the one made by Pharos). Seems like the best option is to get 3G but I hate AT & T and don't want to be stuck with them. Again, thanks a lot to all of you for taking the time to reply to my question. As an Apple newbie, you can see I'm dumb as a brick.

    Rick
     
  14. Wakawaka

    Wakawaka iPad Junkie

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    If you don't mind me asking.. Why do you hate AT&T? I can say I don't like them, but at the end of the day, if their service works where I need it, I'm not seeing the issue.. I've had it for three weeks now and not an issue here in Denver. And I use an iPhone on tmobile.
     
  15. norton

    norton iPF Noob

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    GPS is available for wifi iPad's

    Hi folks,

    This is my first post on this forum, so be gentle :D.

    I read with interest some of the comments regarding wifi only iPad's and the lack of GPS capability. Whilst in Washington DC last month on holiday I bought a 64gb wifi iPad and have been mighty impressed with it, I have no interest in the 3g model as the data costs here in the UK can work out pretty expensive, and that is not what I bought my iPad for. But I do have an interest in GPS, having used Tomtom since it's first inception several years ago on my trusty old PDA's.

    GPS via bluetooth IS available for for the iPad - I have been using mine on my iPod touch since August and it works just fine, and now it works even better on my iPad as all the iPod touch apps work great on the iPad also (though a little pixelated), so you can use Tomtom, Navigon, etc.., no problem at all. I have no doubt that in the next few months many of the big players will bring out iPad specific sat-nav apps so the slight pixelation problem will vanish.

    (Note - I had to edit this post as I am not able to add internet links as I do not have the required 3 posts. By googleing the names below the manufacturers web sites are easily found, and 'Youtube' have some good demonstration video's of these units in use)

    There are 2 GPS options available, 'G-Fi', this uses the built-in wifi capability of the iPad and Touch to transfer GPS data. This option is a little power hungry but it appears to work well on all devices.

    The option I use is the 'GNS 5870 MFi', it is a small bluetooth GPS unit that sits nicely on the dash of my car and is linked by bluetooth to either the iPod touch or iPad, both work flawlessly. The wife and I travelled nearly 2000 miles on the east coast of the USA in September using this GPS and it never missed a beat.

    I hope this information helps someone, I'm surprised that I couldn't find any mention of these GPS units on this forum so I thought I would pen a few words to enlighten people. Just out of interest I bought mine off eBay.

    Cheers, ... John
     

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