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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  

    Default Navigation alternatives

    I have a Samsung Galaxy 2, and my service provider is Verizon. I had been using the terrific Google Maps navigation application until I swallowed the update bait last year. The update, for all intents and purposes, crippled the Google Maps app to the point of uselessness. (The current incarnation is a disaster, if not downright dangerous to use).

    I started using WAZE recently. I like it quite a bit as a navigator, but the social network applications are pretty much lost on me, and with a errant keystroke or two, sometimes get in the way. I would argue that there's one intermediate step too many in initializing the navigation, and it's clumsy to close altogether when I abort or modify my travel plans. Perhaps I'm just not used to it yet, and a bit spoiled by the original Google Maps, which was a model of intuitive efficiency. Can anyone recommend a good tutorial for WAZE?

    I'd also be interested in learning about other navigation applications, particularly if they're free.
  2. #2  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by GfromNYC View Post
    I have a Samsung Galaxy 2, and my service provider is Verizon. I had been using the terrific Google Maps navigation application until I swallowed the update bait last year. The update, for all intents and purposes, crippled the Google Maps app to the point of uselessness. (The current incarnation is a disaster, if not downright dangerous to use).

    I started using WAZE recently. I like it quite a bit as a navigator, but the social network applications are pretty much lost on me, and with a errant keystroke or two, sometimes get in the way. I would argue that there's one intermediate step too many in initializing the navigation, and it's clumsy to close altogether when I abort or modify my travel plans. Perhaps I'm just not used to it yet, and a bit spoiled by the original Google Maps, which was a model of intuitive efficiency.
    Sure, but Google Maps can't hold a candle against the quality and timeliness of Waze's traffic information, which is a consequence of its 'social component'.
    Even Google (Maps) is jealous of it. So much so that they bought Waze for 4 billion, a couple months ago! That should tell you something, right?

    Can anyone recommend a good tutorial for WAZE?
    Yes: the Waze forum.

    I'd also be interested in learning about other navigation applications, particularly if they're free.
    Try NavFree.
    But I think you will quickly get back to Waze.
  3. Thread Author  Thread Author    #3  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by Vsweety View Post
    Sure, but Google Maps can't hold a candle against the quality and timeliness of Waze's traffic information, which is a consequence of its 'social component'.
    Even Google (Maps) is jealous of it. So much so that they bought Waze for 4 billion, a couple months ago! That should tell you something, right?
    Yes, although it's still hard to imagine why they sabotaged Google Maps with the update...I can't believe someone would want to take credit for the new version, as it only tarnished the corporate brand.

    Thanks for the WAZE forum link. I'll take a good look.
  4. #4  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by GfromNYC View Post
    Yes, although it's still hard to imagine why they sabotaged Google Maps with the update...I can't believe someone would want to take credit for the new version, as it only tarnished the corporate brand.

    Thanks for the WAZE forum link. I'll take a good look.
    What makes Google Maps so bad now? I have been using it since early 2011 and it is much faster than ever.

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
  5. Thread Author  Thread Author    #5  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    What makes Google Maps so bad now? I have been using it since early 2011 and it is much faster than ever.

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
    I wish I still had the application that was available in 2011. As for the post-update version:

    There's a new interface that adds an extra step or two to initialize the navigation. It was confusing at first, because there was no tutorial explanation about how it worked. After trial and error, I got the hang of it, but the extra steps still seem unnecessary and annoying. With that said, I could manage the extra keystrokes and clutter. However, it's all down hill from here.

    Upon pressing the "go" arrow, as often as not, the maps will not load (maps unavailable icon appears). Assuming they do load, the stability of the application is tenuous. If the phone rings, or a text message comes through, the maps crash. If you touch the screen, the maps crash (sometimes the voice navigation continues, and sometimes it does not). Sometimes the navigation just crashes for no apparent reason at all, leaving car and driver on their own, driving toward West Nowheresville (I had an experience like this in Texas. I drove 20-30 miles in the wrong direction, before I figured out that the application had unceremoniously crashed..without even wishing me good luck or godspeed. That was early February, and the last time I used Google Maps). My recollection is that the useful ETA icon also disappeared from the permanent screen display after installing the updated version. (It actually shows at first, but vanishes shortly thereafter).

    Furthermore, as far as I could tell, the updated version no longer stores prior addresses (unless they're buried in the application somewhere. Without any instruction, it's hard to tell). When the application crashed, I had to start from scratch, and re-enter my destination.

    From other posts I've read, there are a lot of users very unhappy with the update, to put it mildly, but not every set of grievances are the same. I suspect the update protocol varied from droid to droid. Specifically, my phone is a Samsung Galaxy Stratosphere 2 (SCH-1415). Based on my personal experience, an A+ application became a failure with one ill-advised update. I kick myself hard for not doing my homework before installing.

    I really do appreciate WAZE though, and will probably get more out of it as I become more acquainted with it. I still miss the no nonsense Google Maps app that came with my phone. I used it for business every day. It was a better overall navigator than my Garmin, and even easier to use (and the Garmin's are about as intuitive as they get).
    Last edited by GfromNYC; 03-31-2014 at 09:50 AM.
  6. #6  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by GfromNYC View Post
    I wish I still had the application that was available in 2011. As for the post-update version:

    There's a new interface that adds an extra step or two to initialize the navigation. It was confusing at first, because there was no tutorial explanation about how it worked. After trial and error, I got the hang of it, but the extra steps still seem unnecessary and annoying. With that said, I could manage the extra keystrokes and clutter. However, it's all down hill from here.

    Upon pressing the "go" arrow, as often as not, the maps will not load (maps unavailable icon appears). Assuming they do load, the stability of the application is tenuous. If the phone rings, or a text message comes through, the maps crash. If you touch the screen, the maps crash (sometimes the voice navigation continues, and sometimes it does not). Sometimes the navigation just crashes for no apparent reason at all, leaving car and driver on their own, driving toward West Nowheresville (I had an experience like this in Texas. I drove 20-30 miles in the wrong direction, before I figured out that the application had unceremoniously crashed..without even wishing me good luck or godspeed. That was early February, and the last time I used Google Maps). My recollection is that the useful ETA icon also disappeared from the permanent screen display after installing the updated version. (It actually shows at first, but vanishes shortly thereafter).

    Furthermore, as far as I could tell, the updated version no longer stores prior addresses (unless they're buried in the application somewhere. Without any instruction, it's hard to tell). When the application crashed, I had to start from scratch, and re-enter my destination.

    From other posts I've read, there are a lot of users very unhappy with the update, to put it mildly, but not every set of grievances are the same. I suspect the update protocol varied from droid to droid. Specifically, my phone is a Samsung Galaxy Stratosphere 2 (SCH-1415). Based on my personal experience, an A+ application became a failure with one ill-advised update. I kick myself hard for not doing my homework before installing.

    I really do appreciate WAZE though, and will probably get more out of it as I become more acquainted with it. I still miss the no nonsense Google Maps app that came with my phone. I used it for business every day. It was a better overall navigator than my Garmin, and even easier to use (and the Garmin's are about as intuitive as they get).
    That's rare because other platforms (besides iOS) would kill for Google Maps navigation. Google Maps navigation is in fact, for me, one of the main reason I stayed with android. Nothing else comes close.

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
  7. #7  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by GfromNYC View Post
    My recollection is that the useful ETA icon also disappeared from the permanent screen display after installing the updated version. (It actually shows at first, but vanishes shortly thereafter).
    Waze has ETA.
    Waze has also got a feature that let's you send your ETA to someone (like the person(s) you have an appointment with) together with a link. If they click/tap that their browser opens with a map on which they can see you moving. Or not moving of course, if you're e.g. stuck in traffic. Ideal for someone at home who can see when they should start boiling the potatoes.

    Furthermore, as far as I could tell, the updated version no longer stores prior addresses
    Waze does.

    I really do appreciate WAZE though, and will probably get more out of it as I become more acquainted with it.
    You will. Also because Waze 'learns' about your route as you're driving it. Even when you don't use Waze to navigate. It just needs to be 'on'.
  8. #8  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Oh... and the ETAs from Waze are, at least for me, uncannily accurate. If it says I'll be home at 6:12, I'll be home at 6:12.

    There was one time a few months ago... I fired up Waze and immediately got a warning that a nasty accident just occured on the highway (which hadn't shown up in Google Maps or traffic updates) and it recommended I take some whacked out route I've never knew existed. It said that if I took my usual way home, I'd be royally screwed. The new route would get me home 45 minutes sooner. I followed Waze all over the f'n place..... and it got me home within 3 minutes of the ETA it popped me when I was sitting in my work parking lot.... I walked in and my wife said that she was surprised I made it home since she saw that they closed the HW due to a gas tanker overturning.

    Pretty cool.
  9. #9  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by LeoRex View Post
    Oh... and the ETAs from Waze are, at least for me, uncannily accurate. If it says I'll be home at 6:12, I'll be home at 6:12.

    There was one time a few months ago... I fired up Waze and immediately got a warning that a nasty accident just occured on the highway (which hadn't shown up in Google Maps or traffic updates) and it recommended I take some whacked out route I've never knew existed. It said that if I took my usual way home, I'd be royally screwed. The new route would get me home 45 minutes sooner. I followed Waze all over the f'n place..... and it got me home within 3 minutes of the ETA it popped me when I was sitting in my work parking lot.... I walked in and my wife said that she was surprised I made it home since she saw that they closed the HW due to a gas tanker overturning.

    Pretty cool.
    Google bought Waze, so any accident or construction warnings from Waze pop up in Google Maps and will navigate you somewhere else accordingly. It also tells ETA, how many minutes the trip will last and how many miles. As always with Google Maps you can decide whether to avoid highways, and toll roads.

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
  10. #10  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    Google bought Waze, so any accident or construction warnings from Waze pop up in Google Maps and will navigate you somewhere else accordingly. It also tells ETA, how many minutes the trip will last and how many miles. As always with Google Maps you can decide whether to avoid highways, and toll roads.
    This was before the buyout.... And I'm not surprised Google snatched them up... integrating social/crowd data is a killer addition to any navigation/traffic app. You can get updated, far more accurate info to users faster than anything relying on a traffic reporting service. I'm guessing that Google will slowly bake in more and more of Waze's features until the original Waze evaporates.... if they do it right, it just means more reporters.
  11. #11  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    What makes Google Maps so bad now?
    "Good" or 'bad" are relative qualifications. Relative to Waze in this case. "Good" or 'bad" is also a question of personal taste of course.
    But at least Google – although their 'Maps' is leader of the pack – apparently found Waze so "Good" that it is worth 4 billion to them and slowly killing their old 'Google Maps' over it. Can you get a better recommendation than this from the number One competitor?

    I have been using it since early 2011 and it is much faster than ever.
    Fast it is. But not nearly as good as Waze.
  12. #12  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by Vsweety View Post
    "Good" or 'bad" are relative qualifications. Relative to Waze in this case. "Good" or 'bad" is also a question of personal taste of course.
    But at least Google although their 'Maps' is leader of the pack apparently found Waze so "Good" that it is worth 4 billion to them and slowly killing their old 'Google Maps' over it. Can you get a better recommendation than this from the number One competitor?



    Fast it is. But not nearly as good as Waze.
    The reports from Waze are in Google maps now, so what else is it missing?

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
  13. #13  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    The reports from Waze are in Google maps now, so what else is it missing?
    User participation, instant messaging with other Wazers on the dynamic map, live tracker, the Waze forum, and no corporate 'feel'.

    You really ought to have a good look for yourself. Try it for a week. You'll never go back.
    Last edited by Vsweety; 03-31-2014 at 09:27 PM.
  14. #14  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by Vsweety View Post
    User participation, instant messaging with other Wazers on the dynamic map, live tracker, the Waze forum, and no corporate 'feel'.

    You really ought to have a good look for yourself. Try it for a week. You'll never go back.
    I'm good with Google Maps. Been my maps of choice for years. Used Waze before but its a huge data hog and battery hog.

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
  15. Thread Author  Thread Author    #15  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    That's rare because other platforms (besides iOS) would kill for Google Maps navigation. Google Maps navigation is in fact, for me, one of the main reason I stayed with android. Nothing else comes close.

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
    I don't think it's so rare, as I know I'm not the only one that had their Google Maps application sabotaged by an update. I spoke to different reps in two Verizon stores that were well aware of the update complaints. (In fact, it was one of those guys that suggested WAZE). I didn't go into detail in my opening post, because the complaints have been well chronicled here and elsewhere. A Google search of the terms" Android update ruins google navigation" (the irony isn't lost on me) turns up pages of war stories like my own.

    On the other hand, I was driving with a buddy the other day that uses the Android platform on an LG phone, and his Google Maps app still works like a champ. Maybe someone on the forum with more "inside baseball" knowledge of this stuff can explain.
  16. #16  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    I'm good with Google Maps. Been my maps of choice for years.
    Do I detect a smack of conservatism there? But that's OK. Free choice. Matter of taste.
    Problem is: you want improvement, but you don't want change...
    You can't both have your cake and eat it too, you know.
    Something's gotta give here.

    Used Waze before but its a huge data hog
    Depends on the routes you take and the way you use the app.

    and battery hog.
    That is not an issue if you use it in a car. On a charger. As 99% of its users do. It's a traffic navigation app, isn't it?
    That IS an issue if you use it when hiking or biking. On battery.
    Most smartphone batteries give out after about 4 or 5 hours of fulltime navigating.
    About the same as watching streaming HD porn.
    Or football...
    Last edited by Vsweety; 03-31-2014 at 10:44 PM.
  17. #17  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by Vsweety View Post
    Do I detect a smack of conservatism there? But that's OK. Free choice. Matter of taste.
    Problem is: you want improvement, but you don't want change...
    You can't both have your cake and eat it too, you know.
    Something's gotta give here.



    Depends on the routes you take and the way you use the app.



    That is not an issue if you use it in a car. On a charger. As 99% of its users do. It's a traffic navigation app, isn't it?
    That IS an issue if you use it when hiking or biking. On battery.
    Most smartphone batteries give out after about 4 or 5 hours of fulltime navigating.
    About the same as watching streaming HD porn.
    Or football...
    Conservatism? Google Maps has worked for me consistently and the ability to search for places to go is invaluable. How can I want improvement on the gold standard (IMO) of mobile navigation? I don`t use a charger while navigating, I don`t even own a car charger.
  18. #18  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    the ability to search for places to go is invaluable.
    How is that different from other navigation apps?

    I don`t use a charger while navigating, I don`t even own a car charger.
    That explains the battery drain then, doesn't it?

    And here's something else you might not know: navigation apps drain the battery even when being charged on a USB charger (like most car chargers are). Because navigation apps pull more juice than USB chargers can deliver.
    Sure, the drain is very slow, but it IS draining.
    Last edited by Vsweety; 03-31-2014 at 11:54 PM.
  19. #19  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by Vsweety View Post
    How is that different from other navigation apps?
    So if I search for dentist in other navigation apps will I get results for something like dentistry places near me, Ill get a phone number to call, hours of operation, sometimes photos of the interior and reviews?


    That explains the battery drain then, doesn't it?

    And here's something else you might not know: navigation apps drain the battery even when being charged on a USB charger (like most car chargers are). Because navigation apps pull more juice than USB chargers can deliver.
    Sure, the drain is very slow, but it IS draining.
    Google Maps isn't a battery drain like Waze for me.

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
  20. #20  
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    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    So if I search for dentist in other navigation apps will I get results for something like dentistry places near me, Ill get a phone number to call, hours of operation, sometimes photos of the interior and reviews?
    Yep!
    Well, Waze gives you addresses to navigate to, and ETAs to send, anyway. It's a traffic navigation app, after all.
    Haven't checked other nav apps.
    For numbers to call, hours of operation, photos of the interior and any other non-traffic-related stuff like that we have Google, Startpage, Bing, etc., don't we? On the same device. Even side by side on the large Samsung screens. That's what we've got copy & paste for.
    It is generally advisable to use the appropriate tool for the job instead of trying to drive in a nail with a screwdriver. So use a nav app to find places and navigate to them, and use a general data search engine to find general data.
    Last edited by Vsweety; 04-01-2014 at 05:17 AM.
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  21. #21  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by Vsweety View Post
    Yep!
    Well, Waze gives you addresses to navigate to, and ETAs to send, anyway. It's a traffic navigation app, after all.
    Haven't checked other nav apps.
    For numbers to call, hours of operation, photos of the interior and any other non-traffic-related stuff like that we have Google, Startpage, Bing, etc., don't we? On the same device. Even side by side on the large Samsung screens. That's what we've got copy & paste for.
    It is generally advisable to use the appropriate tool for the job instead of trying to drive in a nail with a screwdriver. So use a nav app to find places and navigate to them, and use a general data search engine to find general data.
    Why not use the same app to accomplish these tasks instead of using two different apps? Sounds like more work to me.

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
  22. #22  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Keep the discussion civil and on-topic. Thread has been cleaned up. I suggest that those participating here acquaint themselves with the forum rules.

    Sent from my Galaxy Note II
  23. #23  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    Why not use the same app to accomplish these tasks instead of using two different apps?
    Because the quality of the execution of both tasks suffers badly.
  24. #24  

    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by Vsweety View Post
    Because the quality of the execution of both tasks suffers badly.
    How so?

    Sent from my XT1060 using Mobile Nations mobile app
  25. #25  
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    Default Re: Navigation alternatives

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    How so?
    Yes.

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