Looking for a bit of advice re setting up a new tablet for navigation

Hi all,

We have had a Hema HN7 for a number of years now and its starting to get a bit tempramental so rather than get a new Hema, I am thinking of getting a 10 inch tablet and loading EO maps onto it.

So I am wondering which tablet would work best?

Needs to have a GPS gadget in it, anything else?

I am not very tech savy so be kind please

TIA
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Reply By: Stephen L (Clare) SA - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 13:20

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 13:20
What ever you get, either Windows based or Android, make sure you can load OziExplorer onto it, it is the best outback navigation system you can get.

Using Ozi you can load what ever maps you like and as for GPS, it’s not really a problem, as you can now get good quality Bluetooth GPS transmitters cheap.

Good luck
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 19:12

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 19:12
.
True Stephen, you can use an external GPS and that may be useful if you wish to locate the tablet away from the windscreen and vision of the satellites. But otherwise, it is much less trouble if the GPS is within the tablet thus avoiding 'dongles' & cables.
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 23:14

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 23:14
I use Samsung devices. It doesn't seem to matter where they are in the car (within reason - I haven't tried them under the seat, LOL) they are always accurate enough for road navigation.

My vehicle (BT50) does have a very raked windscreen, so that may have something to do with it, but my point is my Samsung devices are not very fussy about satellite visibility. They will quickly get a fix and are accurate enough for non-precision work even indoors on the ground floor of a 2 storey house.

OTOH, my old Magellan Explorist 600 and an old GPS mouse I have are both useless indoors and will not get a fix until taken outside, and even then it takes some considerable time.

I agree with Stephen - if you're starting out get an Android or Windows device, preferably with built-in GPS and SIM so you can run Ozi Explorer as well as EOTraveller. Neither NEEDs a SIM. Ozi doesn't use it but you'll get the best out of Traveller with a SIM.

Running the two of them simultaneously in split screen mode is very cool and very handy. I find running Westprint's Australian Outback Tracks 1M in Ozi for an overview alongside EOTraveller at a preferred zoom level for detail to be an excellent +configuration.

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Follow Up By: equinox - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 12:52

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 12:52
Hi Frank,

How do you operate in split screen mode?
Can you run 2 x Ozi's at the same time?

Sorry, all these questions - HNY

Cheers
Alan
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 15:48

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 15:48
G'day Alan,

Second question first:
Normally you cannot, and I haven't pursued this until now. I found this utility, Parallel Space.

I haven't tried it, but apparently that's the way to go.. Have fun!

First question:
It's easy but the method depends on what version of Android you're running.
With later version you minimise the app, then on the recent apps screen long press on the app's logo (circled) and from the pop-up menu choose Open in split screen view:



The app will open in a small portion of the screen. Then open another app and the screen will be shared equally between the two. You can move the divider as you wish.

With older versions of Android (I don't know the cut-off version), minimise the app. In the recent apps screen, any app that can run in split screen mode will have two parallel bars at the top right (circled). Tap the bars on one and it will open in half a screen. Open another app and it will open in the other half screen. As above, you can move the divider.



HNY and Safe travels in 2021.

Cheers

Frank
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Follow Up By: equinox - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 15:56

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 15:56
Thanks Frank - I will give them go - I have the latest update so should be good to go

Cheers
Alan
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 16:16

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 16:16
Hey, Alan, I got it to work! :-)

(I haven't registered Ozi on the new device yet - code only just came through in the last few minutes.)



Neat!
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Follow Up By: Rocket Rod - Sunday, Jan 03, 2021 at 00:10

Sunday, Jan 03, 2021 at 00:10
Hi Frank, did you use the Parallel Space software to do the side by side thing or some other method. My Samsung S6 Lite doesn't want to run 2 versions of the same thing side by side by default.
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Sunday, Jan 03, 2021 at 11:18

Sunday, Jan 03, 2021 at 11:18
Hi Rocket,

To get two instances of the same app side by side, like the Two Ozzies above, you have to use Parallel Space or something else that does the same thing. AFAIK that will be the case in all Android devices, regardless of brand.

You don't need any trickery to run two different apps side by side like Traveller/Ozi further up - the apps themselves will determine if they are suitable for that.
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Reply By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 13:44

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 13:44
Hi Wooly,
Good to hear you're thinking of getting ExplorOz Traveller to load EOTopo maps. If buying a new Android tablet - yes other than checking it has a GPS to enable offline location services, the single most important feature you want is good Processer and Memory (ie RAM).

I've recently noticed that some new Android devices are being sold with very low RAM (to attract the low end market) but these devices are not designed for multitasking - ie. using multiple apps at once, or using apps that run in the background, so they will crash instead of hold information in the background. Be aware that mapping and navigation apps are quite demanding on RAM so don't opt for the cheapest device. If you only spend $200 you'll not be getting a quality device.

So how much is enough RAM? 4GB.
Whilst a device with 2GB will run the app, you may find the app appears to be running slow, and perhaps will crash unexpectedly - that is what happens when the device cannot handle the amount of information it is being asked to hold in memory. Go for 4GB RAM and you'll enjoy fast, fluid operation.

There are a few other features you can then look for - but these are not critical - eg. storage - you can go for as little as you like as the internal storage is not that important as you can just use SD card for storage so don't buy based on storage capacity.

You don't have to have a device with a SIM (ie. ability to connect to mobile internet data via 4G) but if you do this is really very handy as it our app has built in features to use the internet for data syncing, downloading updates, and if you wish to use the satellite maps, street maps or online EOTopo maps. And of course you can then get your emails etc.

Android operating system - just check that you are getting what you expect when buying new you might assume you are getting the latest version of the OS but this isn't always so. The latest version of android is 11.0 (but not all devices have this yet as its very new, so 10 is ok). I would not accept buying a new device if it doesn't have at least Android 10 however. The reason for this is that the main purpose of the updates is to provide you with the latest security and privacy enhancements to protect you from digital attacks that are constantly being designed by hackers. However, Google (who own Android) also guarantee support for at least two years for all major Android updates, and three years for monthly security updates. After that however, your device is then subject to problems that neither they, no the app developers have any requirement to support.

Hope that helps.
PS don't forget to take a read through the User Manual - its available to anyone before purchase to view/read/download free from the ExplorOz Traveller webpage (you just need an ExplorOz account - free visitor account is fine, in order to open the file as a standard site security measure).
Michelle Martin
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Follow Up By: Member - Wooly - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 21:12

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 21:12
Thanks for the advice Michelle.

I've been looking around a bit at the Samsung Tabs and saw these but they say they are A7, does that mean the operating system is Android 7?

I can't see anywhere on the add what number the operating system is.

https://www.jbhifi.com.au/products/samsung-galaxy-tab-a7-10-4-4g-32gb-grey-2020
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 21:56

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 21:56
A new Tab A7 runs Android 10 but has 3gB of RAM, not the four that Michelle recommends. I have a new one which I have been running split screen with Ozi Explorer and EOTraveller, but only statically at home. Unable to travel at the moment apart from suburban running around. Split screen is pretty demanding; however it seems to perform ok. A number of others here have reported good performance with the Tab A7 despite the less than ideal RAM.

I think the hardware in the A7 is pretty good. The compromises to make it cheaper than its more upmarket S series tab competitors is the display, a slower but still capable processor and the lower RAM figure. In reviews the main criticisms are the display and the camera. The display is perfectly adequate for a navigator and general useage but the critics say it is lacking for real graphics work - which is NOT what the A7 is designed for.

Likewise, the camera is perfectly adequate to take a photo for a simple record, such as adding to EO Places, but is not suitable for detailed digital photography and image manipulation. Again, that is not what the A7's price point is all about.

The A7 is just a good quality utility tablet and doesn't pretend to be more than that.

To get more RAM in a Samsung product you will have to spend considerably more than the asking price for a Tab A7 - AFAIK from my research you will have to step up to the Tab S series where you'll be looking at 1.5 to 3 times the $$$, depending on the model you choose.

There are other brands that may offer 4+gB RAM at the A7 pricepoint but I haven't researched them.
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Follow Up By: Member - Wooly - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 23:27

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 23:27
Thanks for your reply Frank.

I've been googling a bit and the S6 Lite 4G 64GB looks like it might go ok?

It has the 4GB ram and looks to be about $120 dearer than the A7

Do you think the sim card is really necessary?

All we will use this for is a navigator so not too worried about camera or screen quality, as long as its adequate for the maps.

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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 23:47

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 23:47
I haven't used an S6 Lite, but I'm sure with those specs it would be ok. Depending on how many maps you want to load it up with, you might want to give it an SD card for memory expansion. I use a 128gB card, they're not expensive now. If you want to go overboard with maps, music, eBooks etc to make your tablet do everything in one device you can stick up to 1tB in the SD slot. That's a LOT of data.

I have a lot of maps for Ozi - they all are on the SD card. Also, I install Traveller's maps to the card as well, leaving internal memory for apps and stuff that is not conveniently put onto the SD card.

I prefer a SIM in my navigator tablet because I want Traveller to do what it's designed to do with as little fuss as possible, but as Michelle says, it's not really necessary - you can hotspot the tablet to your phone. I think a SIM slot will add about $200 to the price - maybe a bit less. And then you have to pay for a data plan - cost dependent on your provider. Mine is $5 a month with data shared from our mobile plans as part of our bundle.

The display quality will be similar to the A7 and will be fine for maps.

If you wish to contribute photos to EO's Places, the camera will be fine for that, too, especially in conjunction with Traveller.
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Reply By: Member - rocco2010 - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 14:12

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 14:12
Been happily using ExplorOz traveller app on an iPad mini for a year or so.
And the recent app update was a big leap forward.
If you already have an iPhone or other Mac devices I’d suggest it makes sense to stick to same system.
You need an iPad that is both wifi and mobile capable as the wifi only models do not have gps. Alternative is a separate gps bug.
If budget is tight there are cheaper alternatives which no doubt work just as well.
You pay a premium price for Apple products and I know not everyone is able to do that. But it works for me.
Good luck with it.
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Reply By: Member - Bigfish - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 16:49

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 16:49
Had the Hema a few years ago but it died...not an uncommon problem. I found it clumsy and slow to use. I now have 10 inch and 8 inch Samsung Tab A tablets. I run E.O., Ozxiexplorer and Memory Maps. I have many maps that I use. The ability to have the use of other apps is also a bonus. Maps work extremely well and quick too. Being able to add apps is also great. GPS, WIKICAMPS, IG STREET MAPS, BOATING APPS, ETC.ETC. All handy when away camping...also have 1000,s of songs on the tablets to play via bluetooth for music when needed. Samsung tablets come with built in gps.
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Reply By: Member - Jim S1 - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 16:51

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 16:51
Yes, we've had an iPad , with GPS, with a couple of sets of maps including HEMA, ( Traveller and EOTopo the best), and the Apple general navigation for towns works well, as does the Google maps. With a decent memory, the iPad does everything we want, and is easy to use.
Have most of the stuff on an iPhone as well.

Cheers
Jim
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Reply By: Kazza055 - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 18:08

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 18:08
I have a Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 that I intend to use on any extended touring trip as the head unit in my D-Max has maps from 2014 and I refuse to pay out $150 for updated maps that could still be anything up to 12 months old.

I am waiting on a holder that will clamp into the CD slot as this seems to be the best and easiest method I can find to get a solid mount.

The Tab has all the bells and whistles I would need for a Navigation tool.

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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 23:26

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 23:26
I tried a cd mount on my last trip and it failed. The 8" tablet kept falling on the floor being shaken out of the cd slot by the corros or by rock crawling. It would hold the phone fine being lighter, but the unit snapped off after a week of use.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 09:49

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 09:49
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I would be concerned at hanging a tablet from the CD slot. Audio devices are not built for that sort of loading.
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Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 19:00

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 19:00
I guess I didn't think to mention that my D-Max is mainly used as a vehicle to tow out van and I am not looking at off road with the van in tow.

The Samsung TAB A 10.1 only weighs 450gm so I don't think I will have any problems with it sitting in the CD slot which I have never used in the 6+ years I have owned the D-Max.
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Follow Up By: Member - rocco2010 - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 19:41

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 19:41
I am thinking about one of those CD slot mounts for my iPad mini and my phone

Based on experience on the corrugations and dunes on CSR, Gunbarrel, Simpson Desert etc I would not mount anything on it on any road worse than good outback dirt.

I have visions of the iPad still going up as the Prado came down! And you probably don't need turn-by-turn navigation on a screen out there anyway.

I know there are stronger floor mounted systems but I can't justify that cost.

Cheers



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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 20:16

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 20:16
I got an Arkon floor mount for 50 something bucks and it's been great. It held a much heavier 12" tablet over the same roads that the cd holder was holding the smallest iphone. The cd holder didn't come close to damaging the cd slot but you can't tighten it enough and it vibrates up and down. That eventually fatigued the stem with the ball joint connector which broke clean off. An 8" tablet would have broken it a lot quicker. I don't reckon it would have held a 10" tablet.
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Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 20:29

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 20:29
I am still waiting for it to arrive from China so will have to wait for it to arrive so watch out for a review.
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Reply By: Gone Bush (WA) - Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 20:39

Tuesday, Dec 29, 2020 at 20:39
Have you considered that your HN7 may just need a new battery?

I replaced the battery in my HN6 (same as HN7) and it’s as good as new.

Check out this Thread: HN6 New battery
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Follow Up By: Member - Wooly - Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 21:05

Wednesday, Dec 30, 2020 at 21:05
I think the battery is not the only problem?

Its very slow to fire up and we have to coax it along manually these days.

I find the screen a bit small too, especially with those tabs on the screen where the map is blanked out, the zoom button etc.

Time for a change I think.
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Reply By: Michael H9 - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 00:18

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 00:18
I'll make one more comment....if you get a 12" tablet on a floor mount you will be blown away. My mate has the 12" ipad on one and when I saw it I thought how fantastic is that, no more squinting, crystal clear, you can't get better. I already had a 12" Samsung tablet for 3 years and wasn't using it in the car because I thought it wouldn't fit. Well it fits on the floor mount and it's brilliant.
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Follow Up By: Member - Wooly - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 11:35

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 11:35
Thanks Michael,

I did have a floor mount in mind actually, bolted to the passenger seat bolt.

I was thinking that the 10.5" would be ok if its up high enough.

Is the 12" very heavy, does it wobble around much?
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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 11:41

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 11:41
My tablet still has the bulky leather cover on it so heavier than the bare tablet and not much movement at all. I'm using the Arkon 22" floor mount that bolts onto the passenger seat anchor bolt. It has proven better than I expected. You need to match the tablet size to the mount capability.
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 11:45

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 11:45
Wooly,

Here is the RAM floor mount I use in my BT 50.

It wobbled hopelessly without the two grey brackets. With them it's steady as.

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Follow Up By: Member - Wooly - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 16:33

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 16:33
Thats alot like what I had in mind Frank.

Do you find the 10" is big enough considering you need to look down away from the track to have a look?

Michaels comment made me consider 12" for a minute but I need to be careful as I can't afford to encroach on SWMBO's leg room.

What have you got there on the lower mount?
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 16:42

Thursday, Dec 31, 2020 at 16:42
Wooly,
I had a 9.7 inch Samsung Tab S2. It had a 4:3 screen.

Now I have a Tab S6 with a 10.5 inch screen, 16:10 ratio. It fits the mount. (I think Samsung has gone away from the 4:3 format as a point of difference from Apple)

I find those sizes plenty big enough.

A larger, heavier tablet will tend to wobble more. As it is, I have had to repair and reinforce the swivel mount on top of the stick.

The lower mount is for my phone. I made up the aluminium clamp on the stick myself and then "cut and pasted" a suitable windscreen mount to that.

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Follow Up By: Member - Wooly - Friday, Jan 01, 2021 at 19:30

Friday, Jan 01, 2021 at 19:30
Thanks for your input Frank.

I think a S6 Lite will do nicely so I'll hunt one down over the next week or 2 and begin the set up.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Warren H - Sunday, Jan 03, 2021 at 12:33

Sunday, Jan 03, 2021 at 12:33
Thus far my RAM floor mount hasn't suffered any fatigue problems and the vibrations were acceptable but it only has a light Lenovo 8" tablet. However I am increasingly finding the tablet is not up to the task. I'm not sure if it has anything to do with the latest EO Traveller version but it has recently taken to freezing when the phone signal drops out (I have it hotspotted). I haven't experimented with starting it using the offline maps or simply not connecting it yet.
If anyone is considering a cd mount, make sure your vehicle doesn't have a narrow cd slot. I'm using the brand sold by JB Hifi and mentioned by Michelle, it has been excellent. Mine won't fit into the VW Jetta slot but is fine in the Pajero. I use it for the phone, running the Torque app to monitor engine and transmission parameters. It also provides a useful GPS speed display in a better viewing position than the tablet.
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