Andoid phone GPS Topo map app that doesn't require wireless connection.

Discussion in 'General GPS Discussion' started by albert, Sep 22, 2017.

  1. albert

    albert

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    I have an android phone (Casio C811) that's a rugged type cell phone for outdoor use.

    I'm trying to find a GPS app with maps that can be installed and used from the Android phone's SD drive.

    I don't want an app that requires a wireless connection such as Cellular or WiFi to access maps.

    I'm looking for an gps map app that can use maps installed on an android phone or device and doesn't require a gps/mapping a wireless connection. Would basically read the maps stored on a device and use GPS to find the current location from a stored map on the device.

    I do have Delorme Topo North America 9 & 10 and Topo USA which can created maps for Earthmate GPS and Delorme / Garmin inreach gps hand held gps devices. However I don't believe Garmins (previously Delorme Earthmate) mobile app will work with an Android device without a paid annual subscription or perhaps from bluetooth pairing? I could be incorrect I don't believe Gamin / Delorme Earthmate mobile app is able to store maps from the device it's running from? Works from either bluetooth pairing or an Internet Cloud? (where the maps are stored).

    What Android GPS / Mapping apps are available that are able to store & use maps directly from an Android device such as a cell phone?
     
    albert, Sep 22, 2017
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  2. albert

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    There are several Android Apps that allow navigation while plotting your position on a downloaded map, they don't require any link to the internet or to a Bluetooth device. The best one I have found is called OSMand, this free App. downloads maps produced by Open Street Maps which is an organisation that produce free maps and is made up of on-line 'mappers' who are constantly updating the maps.

    There is another App. called MapsMe which also uses OSM maps.

    Take a look at the Open Street Map online to see if it has the map detail you require
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Sep 22, 2017
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  3. albert

    albert

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    Ok, thanks. I installed OSMand but it's taking quite a while to download a map of the USA and my state. I haven't yet been able to view my GPS position on a map. Perhaps I should have downloaded something smaller? I think it may take hours to download on my current WiFi Internet connection as after a while the map download progressed only showed 2 percent complete.

    I'm also trying out a free version of BackCountry Navigator TOPO GPS. Maps seem to be more easily downloaded. There is a Pro version for approx. $12.99

    Also looking at MapFactor GPS Navigation Maps

    Some of these mapping apps use OpenStreetMap, which is continually evolving.

    With GPS devices I'm more familure with first running a PC app with it's own maps that lets you edit and create your own map maps from states to larger areas that can then be downloaded onto a device directly from a PC. Most of these Andoid apps have dowloading options from the Internet, some maps are free while others need to be paid for. I would prefer to have my own map DVD's that can be saved to a hard drive then first used from a PC app and then transferred to a device such as a cell phone, tablet, hand held device.

    Delorme did have this sort of software which could be used both from a pc and edit and load maps to a a compatible hand held device. However Garmin purchased Delorme and doesn't offer any support for Delorme products at all.

    Garmin does have a Garmin Inreach Earthmate software with an android app however I'm not certain exactly how it works. When running the app on an androild phone it prompts me for my Garming Inreach username and password which is given to you if you sign up for an annual subscription. There is also another option to pair with a bluetooth device, but I'm not certain how a bluetooth connection would work to have maps available for an Android device.

    After 40 years producing map products. It's too bad Delorme products are no longer supported as they have had some fairly good Topo and street Maps. The last Delorme Topo software program ever produced is Topo North America 10.0 with street and topo maps of the US, AK, Canada and Mexico that work from a PC and comes with separate map data discs whose regional maps can be installed on Earthmate GPS devices. I don't know if any of their Earthmate maps can be installed on other GPS devices or not.

    Garmin took over the Delorme Inreach and Earthmate products, remaming them from Delorme to Garmin.

    Has zero support for other Delorme Products, completely deleting the old Delorme website and forums with downloadable updates, documentation, tech support, etc.



     
    albert, Sep 22, 2017
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  4. albert

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    The Open Street Maps are available for many different platforms, for example there is a site (HERE) that supplies maps for Garmin compatible units where you can pick any combination of map tile groups and download this to a Computer based program (Called Garmin Basecamp), from there further selections can be made before sending your selection to your Garmin Device, However this site won't supply maps in the correct format for the OSMand App.

    OSMand format the OSM maps into a zipped *.OBF file type, the list is here :-

    http://download.osmand.net/rawindexes/

    BTW - If you download from the link above, the file is always named download.php, if you rename it to download.zip you can then unzip the *.OBF file and copy it to the OSMand folder of your Android device

    So unless you can convert other OSM map formats to *.OBF they won't load into OSMand, even other Apps. that use OSM maps package them differently, e.g. the MapsMe App. map files are in *.MAP format




     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Sep 22, 2017
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  5. albert

    albert

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    I download my state from the link provided and renamed the download to a zip file.

    I'm not certain which folder on the Android to copy the state.obf file to?

    When I open the Android OSM app it shows it's configured to 8.08 GB of shared memory.

    Under Data Folder Settings > Change lists External Storage (8.07 GB), Shared Memory & Memory Card (8.07 GB)

    Looking at the internal storage from the PC shows an 811 drive object from the Explorer with two directories one is a "SD Card" folder and the "Internal Storage" folder

    811 > directories = SD Card & Internal Storage

    Computer\C811\SD Card\Android\data
    &
    Computer\C811\Internal Storage\Android\data

    However I'm not able to find any reference to OSM or OSMand while searching the data and other folders on the Android.

    OSMand from the Android shows a 130.6MB file (for my state) ready for download to "Shared Memory" which I haven't been able to change from "Shared memory" under the Data Folder settings.

    I attempted to download my state from a Wifi connection to the Andriod phone, however it progress is very slow, hasn't gone over 2% complete.

    I'm not in an area where I'm able to use receive cellular so my only connection is through a shared wifi connection to Comcast ISP connection ( shared 150 GB throughput). Has previously worked to installed apps from the Google :play store, to access other areas of the Internet, receive text messages and e-mail, etc.

    If I new the map directory for OSMand I would be able to copy it over to the Android.
     
    albert, Sep 22, 2017
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  6. albert

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    You need to place the *.OBF file in OSMand folder :-

    2017-09-23_09.00.50.jpg

    Like this :-

    2017-09-23_08.59.46.jpg

    It would be better if you could manage to get OSMand to download a small file itself, because you could then see where it is storing the *.OBF file, the default Data Strorage Folder is in :- Settings >> General Settings :-

    2017-09-23_09.37.35.jpg
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Sep 23, 2017
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  7. albert

    albert

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    I entered and exited the osmand app serveral time trying to adjust the osmand settings and download a map. No luck trying to download and install a map.

    When the pc was usb plugged into the Android no osmand directory could be found on either drive. I searched all the sub-directories and could not find any reference to osmand.

    Computer\C811\Internal Storage
    Computer\C811\SD Card

    I let the Android sit for several hours and then connected the pc's usb cable again

    There are now two osmand directories so I installed the state.obf file in each.

    Computer\C811\Internal Storage\osmand
    Computer\C811\Internal Storage\osmand\osmand

    The state map data now shows up on the android screen.

    The map by default was set to "Topo".

    The obf topo map isn't exactly topographical as far as elevation and other topographical data however it's topo map does have some off-road data such as forest service and logging roads along with what appears dark lines representing rivers rivers, streams, ponds and lakes at one mile (zoom). One mile also shows city and town streets in more detail.

    At two mile (zoom) major bodies of water and rivers are shown along with major roads. At 5+ miles only POIs appear and there are no roads, bodies of water, rivers and any other map data shown. The map is blank with only POIs.

    So at one and two miles your able to scroll around from a loaded map such as a state map.

    There are several other map types I played around with but the map data still disappears after zooming out 5+ miles

    Map types (Vector Renderer)

    OsmAnd
    Touring View
    Topo
    Mapnik
    UniRS
    LightRS
    Winter and ski

    Appears there are many other features and add-ons I haven't yet explored.
     
    albert, Sep 23, 2017
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  8. albert

    albert

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    Installed osmand+ and having the same problem with it's installation directory showing up from the Internal Storage or SD card directory paths.

    After investigating further I found osmand and osmand+ use different folders to store their data such as the map files.

    Looking under Settings > General Settings > Data storage folder

    osmand storage folder = storage/sdcard0/osmand/osmand

    From Windows Explorer = Computer\C811\Internal Storage\osmand\osmand

    osmand+ storage folder = /data/data/net.osmand.plus/files/osmand

    the problem is I'm not able to find osmand+ storage folder from a usb connection and the Windows Explorer

    I'll keep looking perhaps it's there somewhere.

    I think you should be able to access the storage folder from an Android device if you're running a "root" file manager.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2017
    albert, Sep 23, 2017
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  9. albert

    albert

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    I was able to download my state map for osmand+ however it doesn't show up from the Windows Explorer. Performing a search only the state map installed for osmand shows up in a search.

    For some reason osmand+ is storing the map in a directory with only root privileges (can't be accessed from a pc's windows explorer.

    So perhaps I can use a root file manager and copy the state obf file to osbmand+ storage folder /data/data/net.osmand.plus/files/osmand ?

    I also downloaded a world map which enhances the state map. Zooming out 5+ miles the main roads are now visible for your state, the USA, North & South America and the rest of the world. At 5+ miles there's fairly detailed main roads and what appears to be some Topo data, green areas depicting national forests and possibly trails or forest service roads, etc.

    Of course the topo and road detail doesn't really compare to that of Topo PC application such as Delorme Topo North America, Topo USA and others where you store a large map on a hard drive. Topo NA has a world map with road and some topo detail at zoom level 6-7. Also includes USGS maps, sat. imagery, etc.

    The only drawback with many of the PC apps is they often come with limited capabilities of their maps being used with other handheld gps devices other than ones produced by the mapping company. Delorme products such as their Topo (purchased by Garmin) is limited to producing maps for their own handheld devices such as their Earthmate, (PN series GPS).

    For a small hand held device such as an Android phone, the osmand mapping app works well and has alot of capabilities.

    Here's a link to osmand online help. http://osmand.net/help/HowToArticles.html#Setting_up_.60OsmAnd.60_for_your_region

    It does mention something about the data storage location but doesn't go into detail how to locate it from the Windows Explorer. Perhaps the data storage location may be dependent on the Android OS version your phone has. Android OS produced by Google is based on the Linux kernel. Linux uses a different OS file system structure than Windows. So the file paths won't be the same from Windows as they are from the Android phone and that used by the Android app.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2017
    albert, Sep 24, 2017
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  10. albert

    albert

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    I installed Osmand+ and Osamand is uninstalled.

    I'm able to access an old data folder of Osmand under Windows Computer\C811\Internal Storage\osmand which I'm uncertain Osmand+ is using?

    Currently Osmand+ only recognizes the my state map and a world map downloaded from Osmand+ and doesn't recogize two adjacent state maps downloaded and copied to what I thought is it's data folder from Windows Explorer.

    Computer\C811\Internal Storage\osmand (windows explorer path)

    Data storage folder from Osmand+ = /data/data/net.osmand.plus/files/osmand

    So apparently Osmand+ may be using another data storage folder of it's own creation to store downloaded maps.

    I seem to not be able to find any reference to it from Windows Explorer.

    Not able to find any reference from the Android using ES File manager which is suppose to have root privledges however when I try to turn on root privleges it fails the test so I'm thinking Osmand+ data folder is hidden deeper and going to require root privledges to access.

    I don't think there's any way to copy map files from Windows Explorer to the data storage folder for Osmand+ on the Android device unless perhaps the phone is rooted? I was able to copy map files of Osmand but not Osmand+ (from Windows explorer)

    One user stated he's able to copy map files running Total Commander with FTP AddOn on his phone, and a FTP-Server running on his PC under Linux, via WLAN he's able to copy map files to the android (phone is not rooted).
     
    albert, Sep 25, 2017
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  11. albert

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    I can see why OSMand may have blocked the copying of maps to their product because the free version has a download limit and copying maps downloaded from elsewhere may get around that, however I have downloaded two maps without using OSMand and copied them into the osmand folder, both of these maps display correctly, so we need to see what the differences might be, this is my setup :-

    Help >> About = OsmAnd+ 2.7.5 relesed : 2017-08-08
    platform = Samsung (Android 6.0.1) Galaxy Tab A

    I have had OsmAnd / OsmAnd+ (paid version) installed for some years, so maybe my version resides in a location that was changed on newer releases, i.e. it kept it old location, I don't have any OsmAnd files under :-
    storage >> emulated >> 0 >> data >> data
    only com.samsung.android.app.FileShareServer is in that folder
    all my files are under :-
    storage >> emulated >> 0 >> osmand
    Using a Terminal Emulator App. on the tablet I can see this :-

    osmand-add-map.jpg
    The Gb_england and World_basemap were downloaded within the OsmAnd App itself
    The Gb_Wales map was downloaded on the Samsung Tablet from the link in #4 (file renamed to *.zip and then un-zipped) and copied to the folder shown in #6
    The French-guiana file was downloaded on a Windows computer from the link in #4 (file renamed to *.zip and then un-zipped) and copied to the folder shown in #6

    All of the above maps a viewable in OsmAnd+ 2.7.5
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Sep 25, 2017
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  12. albert

    albert

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    I'm uncertain what you mean folder shown in by #4 and #6?
    _______

    Information about my Osmand version and my cell phone

    Osmand+ 2.7.6 Released 2017-08-08

    Casio C811 Casio G'zOne Commando
    Android version 4.1.2
    Kernel version 3.4.0
    Build number C811M070
    Hardware version 1.1
    __________________

    Seems like a good phone. Comparing to other phones however, it's main selling feature is that it's rugged, can be dropped in water, hit with a hammer, etc. without causing damage. The only support I know of are Casio phones sold by Verizon that have a Verizon account. Verizon offers phone technical support for their account holders.

    Manufacture is Nec Mobile Comminications

    From Wikipedia

    Manufactured by NEC Mobile Communications established 1 May 2010, is a joint venture between three Japanese electronics manufacturers NEC, Casio and Hitachi, where NEC owns 70.74%, Casio 20.00% and Hitachi 9.26%.[1] The company designs and manufactures mobile phones and related products. The company is the second largest maker of mobile terminals in Japan.[2] The company headquarters is in Kawasaki, Kanagawa.

    As of January 1, 2016, NEC Mobile Communications seems to be completely gone from the mobile phone market. Official web site is completely closed. Any support abandoned. Users left alone with their devices. You can explore latest official website's Archive snapshot at the link below.
    ________________________________

    Currently my only access to the file system on the phone is through an ES File Manager app and limited access via Windows Explorer. The Android app doesn't have complete root privileges. I think other steps would need to be taken in order to gain root privileges to the phone.

    I've do have a Linux Ubuntu OS installed on a USB drive, perhaps I could setup some sort of terminal or other type of file access between a pc running linux and the phone.

    I would need further reading to connect an Android device to a PC under Linux.

    Here's one article I came across that discusses work-a-rounds to access an Android device with Linux File Managers. I would need further reading and experimentation to determine what their talking about.

    https://www.maketecheasier.com/access-android-device-with-linux-file-managers/
     
    albert, Sep 25, 2017
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  13. albert

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    Sorry, this refers to my earlier posts in this thread, so #4 = my post number 4 further up this page

    The screen capture in my post #11 above was obtained using a Andriod App. on the Samsung Tablet which gives you a Unix / Linux type 'command' window with which you can examine the file system, the link is here :-
    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=jackpal.androidterm

    The Android tablet I am using isn't 'rooted', I.e. I don't have root access to it
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Sep 26, 2017
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  14. albert

    albert

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    Running the ES file manager I'm able to find maps under local\sdcard\osmand

    Under Windows Explorer Computer\C811\Internal Storage\osmand

    I did copy two adjacent states to the above Windows folder

    I also downloaded my state and a world map from Osmand+

    When I zoom out in Osmand+ only my state and not the two adjacent states are covered in green.

    If I zoom in on an adjacent state road and topo details eventually show up as if Osmand+ is download specific map data for an area over the web.

    Currently I'm uncertain where Osmand+ is storing it's maps.

    What I'll do is download another state from Osmand+ to determine if and changes are made to the above folders and viewing maps from Osmand+.

    If Osmand+ is storing maps in another hidden location then I'll delete the Osmand maps and try to determine where the Osmand+ maps storage filepath from the terminal emulator.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2017
    albert, Sep 26, 2017
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  15. albert

    albert

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    I download from the Android Contours and Shaded relief and Wikipedia for the my state and also download two adjacent states and one Canadian territory. Then enabled contours and shaded relief from the setup menu.

    With Wifi off navigation is slow, zooming in and out takes quite a while. Perhaps my Android phone just isn't powerful enough as I don't find using the program and it's maps fast enough for searching and moving around to various places on the map.

    However for gps navigation when in a vehicle it didn't do too bad for navigation.

    In comparison to e.g. a hand held and vehicle gps and navigation units such as a Magellan or Magellan Maestro I'm finding my mapping and navigating from my Android phone is much slower and clumsy. I'm waiting much of the time for the mapping software to respond, taking it's time to perform different functions.

    I wouldn't recommend my phone running a map/gps program as a main navigation unit unless that's all you have available.

    I would prefer a Magellan nav unit or my laptop running a topographical mapping program such as Delorme Topo USA or North America. Delorme Topo NA 10.0 has topo and street maps that covers the entire North America and Mexico. Topo USA maps normally cover only the US unless has an addon maps installed. Both programs can accept other types of maps such as sat, etc and both are 3D map capable.

    My cell phone works ok for basic gps navigation and consistently lets you know where you are from a map. Seems to be good at providing POI and other types of information when connected to the Internet . However it does becomes bogged down at times, becomes stuck on various screens, take a while to exit a program, etc. Not the best at multi-tasking, requires patience to use, etc.

    I've took a look at several of the Tablets when I needed to stop at a Wal-mart the other day. Notebooks and tablets are becoming much lighter and slimmer. I think perhaps Osmand would work much better from a more powerful Android Tablet or cell phone.
     
    albert, Sep 27, 2017
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  16. albert

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    I have also found that seperatly downloaded maps don't disply this 'green' area, however, in every other respect they seem to work O.K.

    With respect to the the slowness of OSMand, The map are far more detailed at street level and this does place big demands on the system, you could try the reduced 'roads only' version available when downloading from within OSMand itself as the maps are much smaller

    Also contours and shading are going to slow things down even more

    OSMand isn't filling in details by downloading from the web, I think the delay you see is just the phone trying to render the picture

    It would be better if you downloaded everything from within OSMand rather than downloading stuff seperatly, I can't see why this is slower if you are using the same internet connection
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Sep 27, 2017
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  17. albert

    albert

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    Perhaps downloading only seemed slower from the Androild as the speed of Internet connection at times is inconsistent. It's 150GB connection that's shared with other users, a number users that potentially increases and decreases effecting the internet speed for each user.

    I see there is a map selection of a sort under Configure Map > Map Source perhaps I'll download the roads only map to see if it improves the speed.

    Disabling Overlay, Underlay, Contour Lilnes and Hillshade layer improves map speed.

    One thing about not being able to copy map from a hard drive. Lets say your in an area without an Internet Connection, there's no way to copy maps that you have stored on a hard drive to a SD or internal drive. I sometimes go into areas where there is no cellular and internet service. There's no way to download maps onto an Android device. Which is one reason why I carry a laptop with topo and street map software and a Magellan Maestro with me.

    ( Attempting to copy maps from the Android back to the PC using the Windows Explorer proved to be unsuccessful. )

    I'm upgrading to a 32GB SD card which is the maximum allowed for this Casio Android. The currently installed 16GB SD card that shows Total Space = 14.86GB, Available = 14.55GB

    Internal Storage: Total Space = 10.71GB, Apps = 4.07GB and Available = 4.89GB.

    Osmand IIRC, I remember originally seeing around 8 to 10 GB of storage available, after downloading more maps I remember seeing around 5 to 6 GB available. I can't remember if there's a function from within Osmand that shows the amount of storage available?

    The currently installed 16GB SD card is rated at 48/MB/s while the 32GB is rated for 96/MBs. (There are faster SD card with iirc ratings upto around ~280/MBs) however the cost goes up significantly. A person created some youtube videos of homebrew testing of different SD cards using his digital camera, where he would observe the speed to take pics from the camera which would write to the inserted SD card. Measured speed with a single shot and multilpe shots in a row, etc.

    Found the 96/MBs SD card to perform what he showed through his video to be significantly faster than it's predecessors. Faster being single and multiple camera shots are being processed faster.

    I'm not certain what effect a faster SD card will have when used with a cellular phone, but will see.

    I'm not really certain how to go about upgrading to a 32GB SD card. Here's a reply I received from androidcentral forum after posting a question about swapping SD cards.

    "
    It depends on what you have on the current card. If it's only media files (like photos, videos, and music) or document files, then yes, you can just drag/drop the files using Windows Explorer. But if have any apps that were "Moved to SD," it won't work if you copy those files. You'd have to reinstall those apps on the new phone, and then move them to the new SD card (assuming the new phone supports the Move to SD function).

    I'd be a little cautious about the "SD Card" name in Windows Explorer. Some phones will actually call a partition of the Internal Storage the "Internal SD," or just "SD Card" (see here for more info: http://forums.androidcentral.com/amb...-warnings.html) -- which does not mean the removable SD card. Make sure the that SD Card that's listed in Windows Explorer shows files that you know are on the removable SD card."

    Apparently I will need to re-install at least some of my applications using the SD card. Also may need to re-download maps used by Osmand?
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2017
    albert, Sep 27, 2017
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  18. albert

    Nuvi-Nebie Moderator

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    Personally I would not purchase very fast SDcards to hold maps etc. 48MBs should be more than fast enough, I think the speed of the phone's CPU and the amout of ram it has are much more likely to be the limiting factors, these very fast SDcards are required by high spec. DSLRs / video cameras for writing files very quickly and I don't think you will see much improvement in performance
     
    Nuvi-Nebie, Sep 27, 2017
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  19. albert

    albert

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    I already purchased one > Samsung MB-MP32GA/AM 95MB/s (U1) MicroSD EVO Memory Card with Adapter 32 GB

    It's nearly the same as a 16GB purchased back in April - May > Samsung 16GB SDHC SDXC 48MB/s UHS-I Class10 Memory Card. From the descriptions both are Class 10 SD cards.

    With the camera tests it wasn't a huge improvement but enough that it was noticeable. Perhaps It won't make any difference with cell phone as much of the programming is held in memory, Map apps I assume mostly need to access a sd card to read and not to write as a camera does. So any speed improvements may not be noticeable.

    Anyway I wanted a larger SD card to hold more data. I could have chosen the slower 48MB/s but hopefully thought the 96MB/s SD will be slightly faster without any problems.

    As for the cell phone not being able to download maps as fast as from a PC. The PC uses an outdoor wireless nanostation router with ext. antenna connected via Ethernet POE that creates a point-to-point wireless bridge to the AP. Wireless nics and routers used indoors sometimes have problems connection to outdoor APs. .

    When the cell phone is used indoors the wireless connection needs to go though walls and a building before reaching the outdoor AP. Most likely when the cell phone is used indoors the wireless connection is probably intermittent between faster and slower
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
    albert, Sep 28, 2017
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