As stated in the previous post we tested the performance of Groundspeak’s Geocaching iPhone Application on our recent hike to Dunrod Hill.
Before we give the results of the field test, a few words on how this app works with the iPhone.
The iPhone 3G, 3GS and 4G use a combination of GPS, Wi-Fi positioning and cell towers to determine your approximate location. Groundspeak’s iPhone Application then queries the Geocaching.com database in real-time and provides a list of geocaches near you.
The app give you instant, direct access to Geocaching.com’s database of worldwide geocaches, which provides you with the following facilities:
- Search by current location, address or GC code
- Filter your hides and finds from the Geocaching.com search results
- Access geocache details, including description, photo gallery, attributes, recent logs, hint and inventory
- Look up trackable item details, including item goals, while on the trail
- Save geocache listings, including maps and photos, for quick retrieval and offline use
- Log geocache finds and post notes in the field
- Download active pocket queries for use while outside of network coverage
- Submit Trackable logs
- Upload photos when you log a geocache
- View geocache web pages on geocaching.com without leaving the application using embedded web brows
Does the app deliver?
We compared its performance to two handheld GPS Receivers and found the software to be as accurate as the receivers.
All three devices led us to the caches which we had pre-programmed into them.
We found the graphical display on the iPhone more user friendly and easier to operate. Having access to all the information from the geocashing.com website through the app added so much more to the fun and ment that we did not have to take a paper copy of the cache information with us. In use the app occasionally hung-up but a quick switch off and on and we were back in business.
This did not spoil our enjoyment and we really liked this application – in fact after using it one of our group was so impressed that he said an iPhone was now at the top of his shopping list!!!
The only down-side was the battery life of the iPhone. After a day of Geocaching on the hills the iPhone battery had dropped to about 20%.
Not a fault with the app but something to think about before you go down that route.
Overall we give this app 4 out of 5, still some rough edges but eminently workable and a lot of fun.