You can easily use your smartphone as a fully-functioning GPS system as it is usually equipped with a GPS receiver that is just as accurate as a proper outdoor GPS. To turn a smartphone into an outdoor GPS, you’ll need to make sure it is bump-proof, waterproof and has power.
Bump-proof & waterproof
A waterproof case will ensure that it can withstand the odd rain shower. You can pick one up for about €20. You can easily use your phonethrough the bag. The disadvantage is that you lose quality if you make a call. If you need to protect your device against impact, dust and water, then you’ll need to spend a bit more. The advantage is that the case can be personalised for your telephone and can be operated from the outside.
A good GPS works for around 16 hours on ordinary AA batteries but a smartphone with GPS and the screen on, will consume a lot more. If you are also using online maps or making calls, you are risking an empty battery after just an hour. If you are careful with the GPS function on your smartphone, you can charge your phone again at the end of the day. If you use the GPS function constantly, you will need an extra battery or a powerbank along the way. The battery must also be impact and waterproof and will cost you between €120 and €150.
So, it is perfectly feasible to turn your smartphone into a fully-functioning outdoor GPS but, for an honest comparison of the price, you must incl
ude the costs of an extra battery and a waterproof case. Be aware that when buying a new telephone, you will often have to buy a new ‘kit’ too.