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Navigon MobileNavigator for the iPhone

Boyd 2002 Points
edited November -1 in Smartphone Navigation
I'll get the ball rolling by asking if anyone is using Navigon's new iPhone app yet?

The $69 introductory price certainly seems reasonable. Tim has a nice review available here:


  • I use Navigon 1.1.0 for Iphone and its work fine, no problem at all.
  • caryrae 92 Points
    I have used it a couple times but never using a navigon before I can't compare it to those. It does seem to work very well.

    Here is a report from paulkbiba that I pretty much agree with. The one part that is a little off is where he talks about the poi's. When he was looking he did a statewide search which only gives the categories posted but you get many more categories if you do a search in a city.

    I had the chance to use the new Navigon software on an down and back drive to Washington, DC on Saturday. Covered about 400 miles. To make a long story short, I was favorably impressed in many ways.

    The software supports both landscape and portrait views, unlike TeleNav, and I found the landscape view to be preferable. I was unable to listen to voice prompts because my wife has become so sick of listening to them over the years that she threatened mutiny if I didn't shut off the volume! However, the excellent lane guidance and interchange views made voice guidance completely unnecessary. This is saying quite a bit because there are some very complicated interchanges on the route I took. The Navteq maps were impressively up to date given the construction I encountered on the route.

    As far as the display goes, it was clear and crisp and the motion of the cursor was fluid, like what I've come to expect from Nav n Go. There was no jerky motion like TeleNav, which moves bit by bit rather than fluidly. I was impressed. I also noticed something interesting when going through the Baltimore tunnel. The display followed me all the way through, even though there was no GPS signal. It was not a completely simulated display, however, because when we stopped, due to traffic, the display stopped tracking and then started up again when we started moving. However, unlike the fluid display outdoors, this display moved forward in little jerks. I wonder what was really going on. I did have cell phone connectivity in the tunnel, but I don't know if that was a factor.

    The drive to Washington is high speed, typically 85 mph or so, and there was no noticeable lag in the display. Route calculation was almost as fast as on a PND and recalculation was very fast, as well.

    Clearly the software is a work in progress, however. The App Store says that an update will be available soon which will have more functionality, including route planning with multiple stops. However there are some drawbacks that any purchaser will have to evaluate. First, POIs are extremely limited. (It only has airports, tourist attractions, entertainment, sports, convention centers and marinas - a pretty odd choice.) There are no restaurants at all, for example. There is also no avoid road function, so that you can't force a route change, and many other "normal" functions are missing. There is no traffic, but I have found traffic to be generally so useless around here that I didn't miss it.

    The GPS sensitivity of my iPhone 3G was adequate for the trip, but there is no way it would have worked in New York City. No matter what the software, if you will be driving in a challenging area, then the iPhone is not for you. It does help, by the way, to use the phone in portrait mode if you get into reception problems, and luckily Navigon accommodates this. The software behaved the same way Guillaume described above when handling phone calls.

    The bottom line is that Navigon is currently the best software out there for the iPhone. Given the lack of route planning and POIs it is more of a point to point type of thing and can be very useful if you don't have a PND with you. But given the inherent limitations of the iPhone platform I don't think any software will ever compete with a PND. However, with the introductory price I would recommend it as it can be very useful to have with you. At the full price, however, I don't know, especially since the POI database is so limited. Naturally, you will need a power adapter as the phone won't last very long on its own batteries. I found, by the way, that running the phone for 4 hours down and 4.5 hours back didn't seem to have any deleterious effect.

    That leaves TomTom and I wonder about Nav n Go. A couple of years ago they showed me a "concept" app that worked like a charm on the 3G, so it's hard for me to believe that they don't have something in the works.
  • I've used the Navigon app ( 1.1.0 ) for a while now and like it more and more. I compare it to my Tomtom Go devices that I've used for quite a while -currently using a 930. On my 3GS phone the app launches and gets a satellite signal in about the same time that it takes to activate my TT and get a signal, if I haven't connected my device to my computer in a while to download the Quickfix update the TT is definitely slower. Rerouting on the Navigon app is faster than my TT, and without TTS the voice prompts are actually more timely. I'm beginning to rethink how important TTS actually is to me. In urban areas many street signs are difficult to see or even find occasionally, so a timely "turn now" may be more useful. I'm actually rethinking whether this could be my sole navigation device.

    Subjectively I believe the Navgon app gets my position more accurately than my TT. I have to reiterate how fast the app reroutes me when I've deliberately taken a wrong turn or not taken a turn that it wanted me to. Today I took a turn I wasn't supposed to and it it almost immediately gave me new instructions but then I made a u-turn to go back to the original route and just as I completed the U it told me to take the upcoming turn to get back on the correct street. The voice directions are so timely and spot on that I can often ignore the screen. This mitigates my major complaint of the onscreen info, street names, icons, etc., being hard to read because of poor contrast and small fonts. I've also found the speed limit info and therefore alerts to be far more extensive than the TT's. If the legibility issue could be improved and with the possible addition of a traffic function this could well become my main navigation device.
  • I don't see what Navigon offers that CoPilot (for half the cost) doesn't.
  • That one interested me but the screen shots didn't appeal to me and the reviews are far more mixed for it than for Navigon. In fact so far reviews are quite a bit more positive for Navigon than TomTom. Of course the current price of Co-Pilot means one could try it out without too much of an investment.
    But as I said other than legibility this Navigon app in many ways performs at least as well or better than my much higher priced TomTom 930 PND which I do love. From reviews the features of this app that mean more to me work better than than they do on Co-Pilot. I could one day make a direct comparison but really see no need to.
  • Zorker 0 Points
    There are some YouTube videos that do just that, comparing a TomTom stand alone PND to the iPhone with Navigon on the same dash. I recall one in particular shot in Sweden that has a few nice comments that scroll across the bottom to call out differences during the drive. At a minimum the iPhone with Navigon held it's own and was arguably a bit better.
  • I looked up and watched that Swedish one. It looks as if they were just as pleased with both. I have been very pleasantly surprised at how good the Navigon app is. I went back and revised my review on iTunes App store. I stated that if the fonts and icons were bigger or more legible I would rate it 5 stars. It's also really made me reconsider how important TTS is. I guess if they add it I'd have to rate it 5+! At this time I don't believe any of the navigation apps have it other than perhaps the AT&T Navigator.

    I've pored over all the reviews I could find both here and on the app store and YouTube, and there definitely are more positive things said about the Navigon app than almost any other. Given the price ( currently ) and the fact that it's one of the only ones that's already put out an update with another rumored to follow soon, I believe this is a compelling purchase if one is looking for this function on the phone.

    Again this may well supplant my TT 930, at least for local travel.
  • I'm an avid One bag Traveler. That means, I refuse to check luggage and I think wheeled bags are for girls. I carry a single bag onto the plane when I travel.... this limits me due to size and weight.

    On my most recent trip to europe, I had to lug around my iPhone + power. My Netbook + power and my Navigon 8100T + Mount + power. I'm so excited I can ditch the dedicated PND.

    For everyday use the Navigon app looks and feels just like the full size PND... except that there is no traffic on the iphone App. The only other thing that is keeping me from going 100% over is that I can't "avoid" a road in the route like I can on the full size unit.

    The lack of Multi-tasking on the iPhone meant that I could not exit the program to say change podcasts without having to wait for the program to re-load. Now I use Backgrounder to allow my phone to multi-task and I have no more problems.

    Bottom line is this: As soon as TomTom or Navigon offers some connected features like traffic, I will no longer ever need a dedicated PND again.

    For now, I've put the Navigon 8100T up for sale.
  • All good iPhone nav apps should offer iPod controls on-screen so that one deosn't have to switch out of the nav app, IMO.
  • All good iPhone nav apps should offer iPod controls on-screen so that one deosn't have to switch out of the nav app, IMO.
  • All good iPhone nav apps should offer iPod controls on-screen so that one deosn't have to switch out of the nav app, IMO.
    Seems like this is coming very soon with Navigon app.
    I am pretty sure tomtom and other gps app developpers will follow not long after.
  • All good iPhone nav apps should offer iPod controls on-screen so that one deosn't have to switch out of the nav app, IMO.

    Seems like this is coming very soon with Navigon app.
    I am pretty sure tomtom and other gps app developpers will follow not long after.
    I've posted this link in a couple of threads but I thought it was quite interesting since it shows those features so here it is again in case others haven't seen it.
  • jaja 0 Points
    All good iPhone nav apps should offer iPod controls on-screen so that one deosn't have to switch out of the nav app, IMO.
    I don't want to be the stupid one, but what exactly do you mean? :)
    I played around with an iPhone but not with an iPod, so I'm not familiar with it's controls....

  • All good iPhone nav apps should offer iPod controls on-screen so that one deosn't have to switch out of the nav app, IMO.
    Agreed, which is why I jailbroke my phone and installed backgrounder.

    In the meantime, remember you can always get some basic ipod controls by double-clicking the home button.
  • FWIW, Navigon has added iPod control to it's app.
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