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benjeff (Offline)
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Default Nokia offers free GPS navigation - 04-06-2010, 17:25

Does anyone have a Nokia with the free Ovi maps? For some of their phones, you can have GPS (walking or driving) without having to pay additional (data) fees from your cell provider because the phone communicates with GPS satellites: Free Navigation on your Nokia. Forever - Ovi Maps

I'm interested in hearing your opinion on the map quality, ease of use, etc. I like the idea of having a phone with GPS for when I visit new cities in the USA and abroad. Thanks.
   
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Effendi (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2010, 20:31

I have a Nokia e71 and I often use the OVI Maps, which are now free for my device.
Talking about Italy, where I used them most, I must say they are not so updated, but they are not bad. Some new (major) roads are not there, some speed limits are not updated, but for a free service I think it's fine. I used it also in Slovenia and Brasil, without problems.
The previous version of the program was a bit more tricky at first, but I liked it more. The current one is surely easier BTW. I don't like the new search field, it sometimes doesn't find places which are actually on the database...

It's not totally true that you pay nothing for data. When the program starts it starts a connection (without prompting to you) to connect to the AGPS (assisted GPS). It exchanges very little data (usually less than 4KB), but you pay for it (unless you have some data option). The former version of the program didn't have this problem, as far as I remember. It's a big problem here for Vodafone Italia users since they now bill 5 euros each day for the first connection, no matter how much data is downloaded. For the rest you pay nothing. There's a workaround to this problem: just put a "fake" APN in the data settings of OVI maps and you'll pay nothing. But it will take several minutes to connect to the satellites, while with AGPS it's really fast.


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inquisitor (Offline)
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Default 05-06-2010, 00:29

Ovi Maps is free for all Nokia phones with Symbian S60, but navigation requires a license. While walking navigation licenses are free of charge, driving licenses are only free on the most recent phones. You can always view maps including your position, search places and also calculate a route, but you will not get any visual or spoken instructions without a navigation license.

Regarding GPS you seem to have misunderstood things.

First of all GPS is a one-way communication system - the satellites send a signal and your phone receives it. This signal basicly only contains date and time and ephemeris data (i.e. the satellite's position). From this data your phone can calculate it's own position, if it receives signals from at least 3 satellites. That's all what GPS does.
Neither can GPS transmit any map data nor can it give you any navigation instructions nor can your phone talk back to the GPS satellites (which orbit at an altitude of ~12'500 miles - by far outside of your phone's range).

Now Nokia phones generally require a data connection for two reasons:
On the one hand they try to get ephemeris data on the current satellite constellation, which accelerates the reception of GPS signals, as your phone will be told which satellites it can receive and so for which satellites to look for. That's called AGPS (assisted GPS).
AGPS can be disabled in the settings of all Nokia phones, which I've seen so far. Actually this option is not in Ovi Maps, but in the general settings of the phone (in the Nokia 6110 Navigator this can be found under Menu > Settings > Phone Settings > General > Positioning > Positioning Methods - ask Google if you can't find that menu in your Nokia).
However without AGPS it will take longer until your phone receives enough GPS satellites in order to determine it's position.

On the other hand Nokia phones require a data connection in order to get map data from Nokia's map server. However you can download the map data for any country with Ovi Suite through your computer to your phone free of charge as described at the following page:
Nokia Europe - Get new maps for your device
If you have downloaded the map data to your phone Ovi Maps will anyway try to connect in order to update map data and to perform searches in the online database, but you can deny data connections, so Ovi Maps will not connect and it will still work flawlessly (if you have downloaded the map data through Ovi Suite as described in the link above).

So if you disable AGPS and if you download the map data of the region you're staying in, you don't need a data connection to use GPS navigation, however the satellite fixing (the time your phone is searching for GPS signals) may take significantly longer (up to 10 minutes in the worst case) and you won't get the latest map data from Nokia's map server.

Map quality is generally as in any other navigation device. There are only two global providers for navigable map data, Navteq and TeleAtlas, which were acquired by Nokia (Navteq) and TomTom (TeleAtlas) in 2007. All manufacturers buy map data from them, even Google does (zoom in in Google maps until you see roads and you will see "Map data 2010 TeleAtlas").
As a former investor in TeleAtlas I can tell you that there's no general difference in quality between Navteq's and TeleAtlas' data, but of course one of them is always the first to update some new road. So you may always find one of them being more up-to-date in certain places.
The point is from when the map data on your navigation device dates. This is Nokia's big advantage, as they own Navteq and so their map database is always the most recent one. So if you regularly update the map data on your Nokia phone, you'll probably get the best map quality available in the market.

Btw not all navigation devices are sold with free lifetime map updates. Some don't include map updates at all an others only come with eligibility to one free update within a certain time span after purchase.
So that's an important point to look at if you buy a navigation device.


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Default 05-06-2010, 07:10

Is there any way my N95-3 can get permanent map updates?


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Default 05-06-2010, 10:17

Sure. As I wrote above, for Nokia phones map updates are free forever. Just install Ovi Suite to your computer and download the latest maps to your phone.


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Default 11-06-2010, 19:25

Why just not use Google Navigation for free?
   
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Default 12-06-2010, 12:18

Because Google Maps is only available on Android and it requires a data connection, through which it generates quite a lot of data volume.


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adam917 (Offline)
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Default 13-06-2010, 00:18

Quote:
Originally Posted by inquisitor View Post
Because Google Maps is only available on Android and it requires a data connection, through which it generates quite a lot of data volume.
Google Maps is available on a variety of mobile OS/platforms, but it requires an Internet connection which it guzzles even in Map View. Even Nokia Maps complains when it doesn't find an Internet connection but at least one can still use it after selecting No when it asks Go Online or when it says Internet connection needed for positioning, etc. It takes a long time for the GPS to pick up the signal when there is no Assistance to use.


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Default 13-06-2010, 02:25

Sorry, I meant to say "navigation with Google Maps is only available on Android".


terminals: Samsung: Galaxy S5 DuoS (G900FD); Nokia: Lumia 630 Dual SIM, 1200; Asus: Fonepad 7 ME372CG; Huawei data: E3372, E5830s, K3765, E1762; Qualcomm Gobi 2000 in Sony VAIO VPC-Z12X9E/X
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Default 01-12-2010, 20:17

I have a question about GPS. So I'm thinking about buying a phone with GPS and I want to be able to use it even when I'm out of my network coverage. Is it possible or it's only on that GPS devices for cars?
   
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