ViewRanger is one of the biggest hitters in the phone navigation world: indeed, this is actually the most downloaded outdoor app. It’s also a thoughtful and versatile program that has proven itself a hit across a massive range of touch-screen smartphones, as well as being put to the test by 50 per cent of search and rescue teams across the UK. The touch-screen interface is impressive, particularly on the high-resolution iPhone screens with pinch-zoom capability. It utilises an in-app function to purchase outdoor maps for just about anywhere in the world. It has all the functions you would expect from a GPS system: scrolling OS mapping, trip computer, the ability to add waypoints, download routes (including Trail Routes) and information about the area you’re in. The mapping – like Memory-Map – is bought in OS chunks at a specified scale using a credit system, but can be downloaded directly to your phone without the use of computer interface. A £14.99 credit pack buys you 1,000 credits. A 5x5km tile of 1:25,000 scale OS mapping costs 41 credits; 1:50,000 map scales are much cheaper at 7 credits per 10x10km. These are downloaded to your phone, then stored for use in areas without a mobile signal.
The BuddyBeacon feature is a nifty touch and is particularly useful as a way of ‘pinging’ your position to others when you’re out on the hill – good for safety, and for sharing your position with those at home via Facebook.
Compatibility iPhone, Symbian, Android
Available from www.viewranger.com
First published in Trail magazine December 2011