Posts tagged apps
Greatest Road app for iPhone or iPod touch (http://greatestroad.com/) helps bikers worldwide find, rate, share and comment on sweet roads. Open the app, move and zoom the map to an area you’re interested in, and the app shows road stretches nearby. All roads and comments are added by other bikers. You can email directions to other bikers with iPhones, or send a gpx file to yourself or others to install the route on your dedicated GPS device.
Daniel, the creator has got in touch to let us know of some exciting new developments with the latest version, Greatest Road 2.0, which integrates with Apple’s Notifications so that at various points in the app you can keep track of what’s happening with the routes you like.
Customers get an alert whenever a comment or rating is added to a favorite route, one they’ve commented on previously, or one they’ve added.
He says “Now that we have the app wired up with Notifications we’ll be experimenting with other ways to strengthen the “speaking with your buddies” feel.”
You can get the app through iTunes via http://bit.ly/GRgetit and the app is available in English, German, Italian and French.
But that’s not even the best bit, because, for a limited period, the app is being offered completely free of charge. This is the kind of app that the biking scene could really do with, and it needs a thriving user community to do well, so if you like the idea of exchanging great ride-outs with other bikers, and you have an iPhone, you need to download the app now!
I just wish there were an Android version…
Here are some more details from their press kit
Greatest Road helps motorcycle riders find and stay updated on the best roads based on recommendations from other bikers. Pick an area on the map and see all the good stretches right in front of you. Other bikers provide comments and star ratings of the road based on criteria such as Fun, Scenic, Curves, etc.
Add your own route in minutes or add comments or star ratings to what’s already there. Post your favorites on Facebook. Email the ride to friends with iPhones, iPads, iPod touches or even just standalone GPSes. Export *any* route to TYRE or other computer software that uses GPX!
Want to find a new place to ride this weekend? Going on a road trip? Visiting other parts of the country or world? This app works anywhere you can see a map and get directions in the built-in Maps app worldwide.
When you’ve picked a stretch to ride, a single tap switches you over to the built-in Maps application to help you navigate along the way. Support for other navigation apps will be added over time. Greatest Road is not a competitor to the great, in-motion, navigation apps available on the App Store. It is complementary, helping you to choose the right place to go before hitting the road.
We’ve already looked at iPhone apps for bikers, as well as Android applications for motorcyclists. But that doesn’t cover the whole smartphone market, so we decided to take a look at the Blackberry Appworld, to see what the best apps with a biking connection might be. I’m told that Blackberries, well beloved of serious businessmen for many a year, are now becoming really popular with kids too, who like the instant messaging app. So whether you’re a sixteen year old with a moped or if you’re enjoying weekends away from the office on your Harley, these apps should hit the spot.
Blackstar is a GPS based app that is really designed for hikers and mountain bikers, but the range of features on this little app means that it will come in really useful for motorcyclists too.
With the usual details on your current latitude, longitude, direction speed and altitude, as well as distance to your destination, the app also keeps track of geocache locations in your vicinity (if you’re into that). There are links through to your mapping apps and the latest weather, which keeps everything you might need handy.
For me, though, the killer feature is what the makers call Track Management functionality. With this, you can record, save, and export your rides, perfect for recording and sharing a rideout with mates, organising a trip or just to check where you’ve been.
N.B. Not all Blackberries have GPS, and some of those that do won’t let apps access it, so if you don’t have one of those, this app will not work as intended.
Don’t be put off by the name! Sometimes it can be hard to remember where you’ve parked your bike too, whether you’re at a crowded meet, or if you just need to find your way back to your parking spot in an unfamiliar city.
This free app does just what it says in an intuitive way, and you have the option of using a compass/radar type arrangement, or Blackberry Maps overlay to help you accomplish your mission.
Again this app relies on your phone having built in GPS, so check that it does.
Yelp is an app that helps you find the best places to hang out, and track down local businesses with ease, wherever you might be. This app is also available for Android and iPhone, which means that the userbase is pretty big, and therefore more useful, given that it is user powered.
Find a cafe nearby that’s open right now and has favourable reviews? Easy. Find the nearest petrol station when you’re running low? No problem. And, of course you can write a review of the biker-friendly pub you visited last week, to help others find it too.
Another free app, and another that requires GPS.
Everyone is trying to save fuel these days, and this app, which sells for $3.99 will help you to keep track of how often you’re filling up, as well as how economically you are riding. You can track up to 20 vehicles at once, so if you have more than one bike, you can compare your fuel efficiency across all of them, as well as your car.
Another app that comes at my favourite price – free. This app will save you from being unnecessarily distracted while you are riding, without missing any important messages.
As your text messages and emails come in, Drive Carefully will read them out loud, over your Bluetooth helmet set.
Gaming fans are quite well catered for on Blackberry, and there are a few bike racing games available. This one scores for its variety of options, you can choose from bikes including Ducati, Honda, Suzuki, & Kawasaki models and race around a variety of circuits.
The final app I want to share is not currently available for the UK, but it should be, and Canadian or American users should download this app right away. Typically, the app is aimed at car users with barely a thought to the fact that the same functionality is useful to any road user.
This app does so much that the best I can do is reproduce the blurb, but the short version is that this app will make sure that, if you are unfortunate enough to be involved in a minor accident, you can take care of everything with a minimum of fuss.
While we hope you are not one of the millions that experience an accident Help I Crashed My Car? provides you and your family with access to almost everything you need if you are ever involved in an accident!
Help I Crashed My Car?s provides you and your family with a one-click automated emergency communication system that contacts up to 3 family members, your insurance company, and your preferred body shop. It will even send your shop a map of your accident location so they can respond immediately!
Because of its GPS location technology Help I Crashed My Car? makes it easy for you to locate and contact the closest Police department, Ambulance service, Hospital, Towing Company, Rental Car Company, or auto body shop.
Help I Crashed My Car? also provides you with important information on What to Do if You are Involved in an Accident, What to Look for in a Repairer, and what your Consumer Rights are after you have been in an accident.
Help I Crashed My Car? even provides you with the ability to complete an Accident Report and take, store, and send photos from the scene of the accident. You can then send the accident report to your insurance company and garage!
Best of all, it’s free. Someone please do a UK one!
Summing up, it’s clear that although Blackberry may not have the range of apps available to Apple or Android users, but there is certainly a lot of quality where it counts, so there’s no need for Blackberry users to feel hard done by.
If you have a Blackberry, and think we’ve missed a great application, please do let us, and our readers, know via the comments.
After our exploration of iPhone apps for motorcyclists, we decided to check out some of the many apps available on the Android platform. After all, being a biker is not about fitting in, and who wants the same phone as EVERYONE else!
Although I’ve called it a top 10, the apps are not listed in any particular order, and it is important to note that, since I have written this from a UK perspective, in some cases, equivalent apps may be more suitable if you live somewhere else. If no price is mentioned then the app is free, and in some cases there are free versions of the paid-for app mentioned, albeit missing a useful feature or two.
In case you have not seen them before, the funny black and white blocks are QR codes aka 2D-Barcodes. If your phone has barcode reading software, you can scan these and you will be taken directly to the download. If you are reading this on your phone, the links for each app will likewise take you to the marketplace download. OK, let’s crack on.
Pay at the Pump
Find petrol stations with pay at pump facility, so you can save time and not have to strip off your gear – plus avoid being mistaken for an armed robber when you forget to take off your lid on the way into the kiosk. This is aimed at the UK market, and won’t work too well elsewhere, but there are other apps available that cover other countries.
Fuel Prices UK
Everyone needs fuel, and no-one likes to pay more than they have to. This app will help you save money on every petrol stop. It is powered by Experian, which collects data from all the fuel card transactions fleet drivers use, so the data should be pretty accurate. The data comes on an annual subscription, with £4.99 and £9.99 variants, the dearer app gives more details on exact prices. Assuming a 2p per litre saving on each fuel stops low mileage scooterists might struggle to break even, but if you ride a bigger bike, and especially if you run another vehicle too, this app should more than pay for itself. Incidentally, this is blatantly the same app (same developers) as the identically priced AA Fuel Prices iPhone App, but without the annoying AA branding.
The ultimate road trip app. Winner of the travel category in the 2nd Android Developer Competition. Use Trip Journal to record and document your travel experiences and share them with friends and family. You can track your route, record waypoints and photos and geotag everything with Google Maps and KMZ Export. The full version is well worth the €1.99, as it adds Facebook, Flickr and Picasa support as well as a useful backup facility.
This app helps you remember where you parked, and as well as cars, you can obviously use it to find your bike. Parked up at Box Hill on Easter Monday, and can’t remember exactly where you left your ‘Blade? Looking around you can see about 20! This app will guide you right to yours using your phone’s GPS. If you are in a Multi-Storey, you can set the Level, Section and Colour too. Finding your car is simple, with a choice of map or radar view. The paid version at $0.99 removes ads and adds a parking meter feature, so you know when your time is nearly up.
This app is an awesome way to share your own routes with mates. If you have a favourite ride out between two points, it may (unsurprisingly) not be the route Google Maps chooses. And giving directions doesn’t always work out the way you think. But this app goes beyond this, as you can integrate photos of custom waymarkers, (e.g. turn left at this pretty white cottage) and tag points of interest.
Geotag a meeting point and send it to your mate. Then you can go and get a cuppa while you wait for him to turn up. When he arrives, you get a message telling you he’s there.
Motorcycle theory test preparation
This app will be a great help to new bikers who are preparing for the theory test. Saying that, those of us with more experience could do worse than to brush up on our Highway Code knowledge. $4.99 (but don’t worry it is for the UK test). There is a car version too.
Ultimate gps speedometer. speed, max speed, ave speed, pace, altitude gain and loss, odometer, map, replay, charts. A pro version adds live tracking…
Augmented Views 2.0
There are plenty of traffic applications out there, and the RAC, Transport Direct, and some independent folks have decent apps, and you really should have one of them on your phone. But this app shows the future of real time traffic info. This free app takes your regular traffic info and supplements it with some unbelievable extras – live feeds from nearby traffic cameras, traffic and travel related tweets from users near you and speed trap warnings. It speaks to you as well, so you can use it on the move. For when you are not on the road, there is also an augmented reality view that orients you relative to local cameras and alerts. Some features are only available in certain areas, so you’ll need to check out what’s available for you. Incredible stuff, and the UK is fairly well covered, especially around London and Glasgow, along with various North American cities. In its current form, I would use it in combination with a more regular traffic app. The live pictures could really help you decide if it is worth carrying on and filtering, or if you would be better off making a detour.
Finally, time for some relaxing fun. An entertaining game with a motocross theme. Costs $1.99 and has a pleasingly retro feel to it.
I hope you have the opportunity to try some of these apps for yourself. On Android phones, if you delete a paid-for app within the first 24 hours you get a full refund, so there is nothing to lose by trying them out.
If you have an Android phone, and you have found another app that is useful for bikers, please let me and everyone else know via the comments.
Dynolicious is the first automotive performance meter available for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Dynolicious uses the hardware built-in to your iPhone to measure the performance characteristics of your vehicle. No external wires or equipment are necessary, simply slip the iPhone into a cradle or cupholder and go!
- 0-60 Acceleration
- 1/4 Mile Trap Speed and Time
- Estimated Horsepower
- G-forces in 360°
The MOTO KIT for iPhone consists of a forearm or handlebar-mounted waterproof iPhone case, an in-helmet hands-free kit and an optional external battery.
Which leads on to the…
iBike Rider – £ 26.71
Are you are biker? Do you have an iPhone? Tired of missing calls? You want your iPhone to be a GPS or radar warning? It is finally possible! iBike Rider meets all your needs! You’ve acquired the best smartphone ever made! Enjoy it!
2XL Supercross game – $7.99
From the review: “I could watch the intro over and over, the graphics are unreal and the game play is stellar. It’s fast as hell on an iPhone 3GS and the controls are the best. Turning the iPhone is so natural you feel like you are really riding the bike. This is not only the best motorcycle racing game on the iPhone, it’s the best motorcycle racing game on any platform and that includes the PS3 and XBOX 360.”
The hottest racing action for your iPhone and iPod touch! Grab your bike and hit the road with Wingnuts Moto Chaser! Developed exclusively for the iPhone and iPod touch, Moto Chaser provides a unique racing experience.
Trapster app - the application is free
From the review: “Did you miss the days when folks would high-beam you with their headlights to warn you of parked police cars ahead? Those hiding police will get you if you’re not careful these days. Now you can have a modernized high-tech high beam solution in Trapster. Consistent use and reliance on the goodwill of others will steer you clear of speed traps.”
FGPnow app (For Canada) – free
FGPnow! is a free mobile application that shows Canadians tomorrow’s gas price around 5pm every day. Version 1.0 will provide gas prices for Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal. Future versions will include prices for additional major cities.
MX Mayhem game – $0.99
From the review: “Moto X Mayhem is a neat dirt biking game. It may be one among many in the App Store, but it does its own little thing pretty well.”
MotoGP season 2009 at your finger tips. The official MotoGP iPhone application is your window to LIVE TIMING race information:
Race lap, rider position, lap time, gap time, top speed. Get updates lap by lap from the comfort of your home, on the go or at the circuit! The MotoGP iPhone application also provides access to race results, championship results, latest news, rider profiles and a huge photo gallery. The photo gallery is updated for each race and features official photos of circuits, riders, racing action and “paddock girls”.
AccuFuel™ Fuel Efficiency Tracker makes monitoring your vehicle’s fuel efficiency simple and fun. Is your SUV guzzling gasoline? Is your hybrid saving you money? With AccuFuel, you’ll instantly see how your driving habits affect your fuel efficiency.
WeatherBug app – free or £0.59 for elite
WeatherBug is the only source for truly live, local weather, providing users access to the largest network of professional weather stations in the US and thousands of locations around the world. Choose WeatherBug or WeatherBug Elite and put live, local weather in the palm of your hand.