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  • On the road with smartphones

    Smart phones are becoming so common these days, and for me has become an alternative to bringing a laptop on the road with me. Part of motorcycle camping is finding gear that has multiple uses and my smart phone really fits that bill.

    I currently use the Motorola Droid on the Verizon network and while it's not an Iphone, I am pretty pleased with its capabilities. Don't get me wrong I would love to have an IPhone but unless you live in a metropolitan area or don't venture far away, AT&T limited data coverage sucks.
    ( my personal experience, your mileage may vary with AT&T )

    Aside from the obvious telephone capabilities, the Droid is a fairly good camera, and quite surprisingly a very good video camera. Along with its web browsing ability and turn by turn navigation with Google Maps just friggin rocks. So bottom line in my case my Droid means that I can leave my laptop, camera, video camera, and GPS at home. That is a huge about of space that I just freed up on my load plan!!

    Well on to my point for this post.... Last year on my " No Destination" trip my lovely wife was our source of Intel. Every morning Jerry and I would sit on the picnic table with our map out and my wife on speaker phone trying to tell her where we were at the time. And her giving us updates on the weather forecast and radar.
    This year we hit the road with a phone capable of internet access so we had the capability to do our own weather updates with us. But what I also did was what made the trip enjoyable for my wife.

    "" Wait a minute Dave you said your wife was at home. ""

    Yep she was but was able to see where we were and actually see photos that I took a few minutes after I took them.
    Google maps has a companion program called " Google Latitude " where basically you phone reports back to google maps your location. And you choose other google latitude users to share that with. I installed it on a laptop at home and my wife could see where we were.
    Now some of you are shaking your heads right now but you can disable the reporting feature if you want to go Ninja and tell her that you were in a bad cell coverage area. LOL Anyway this worked really well and she enjoyed the ability to sort of be on the trip with us even if it was via the internet.

    I also have a Photobucket account and the Android Market ( apps store for Droids ) has a free app for photobucket. one of the options in the settings it that it will automatically upload a photo to photobucket when you take the picture. Again be smart here, it can get you in trouble if you are in the afore mentioned "Ninja Mode." LOL

    Over all it was more for my wife, but our evening phone calls from the campground were more than the " I miss you, when are you coming home" discussions. She really enjoyed being able to see where we were and then looking at the photos while we were at that location.

    This worked great and earned me some much needed brownie points with the wife. For the most part I had data coverage most of the trip so she was able see most of the route.

    See ya on the road....
    DDB - out
    Last edited by DevilDog; 09-30-2010, 10:35 AM.
    HERD # 00075
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  • #2
    Nice! More reason for me to get the Droid... I have seen some of the images and for what I will be using them, I think it's more than enough with the highest setting! PLUS....I can leave my camera gear at home which is another bag on it's own!

    Stealth Mode might come in handy but I'm lucky enough that if I end up at a topless joint....the first question from my Mrs. would be............................"Do you have enough singles ($$$)" LOL. But to be honest....The last time I went to such clubs was over 20 years ago and it was for a bachelor party.

    Thanks again for a great write up!
    .
    2010 FLHX - Street Glide
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    • #3
      NP Boss. The droid has a 5MP camera and it does pretty good and if I have room and I will try and bring my DSLR with me. One thing that I have to remember when using the Droid on camera duty is to " wipe the lens off " if you notice that some of the photos from the ride report were foggy looking and others were clear.... that is what the issue was the lens had sweat on it.
      HERD # 00075
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      • #4
        hmm..thanks for making my decision harder....I have been thinking about getting an iPhone but just cant decide if thats what i really want. I may have to look at the droid a little closer now...

        Good info, thanks for posting it.

        Josh #00042
        R.I.P. Dad 1951-2015

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        • #5
          Originally posted by doublej View Post
          hmm..thanks for making my decision harder....I have been thinking about getting an iPhone but just cant decide if thats what i really want. I may have to look at the droid a little closer now...

          Good info, thanks for posting it.
          doublej for me it was all about network coverage. I have been on a few trips with people with Iphones and the coverage was spotty at best and I was still in data coverage with verizon. But that was my experience, and the areas that I travel in... Trust me if the areas that I frequent were in the AT&T data coverage area I would go get one now. I use my Ipod touch a lot and really like the way it functions, plus I have a crap load of ipod stuff. I even have the Bose sound dock for ipad/iphone and the sound is unbelievable. But I have found myself listening to slacker radio on my droid more often....
          HERD # 00075
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          • #6
            Originally posted by DevilDogBagger View Post
            doublej for me it was all about network coverage. I have been on a few trips with people with Iphones and the coverage was spotty at best and I was still in data coverage with verizon. But that was my experience, and the areas that I travel in... Trust me if the areas that I frequent were in the AT&T data coverage area I would go get one now. I use my Ipod touch a lot and really like the way it functions, plus I have a crap load of ipod stuff. I even have the Bose sound dock for ipad/iphone and the sound is unbelievable. But I have found myself listening to slacker radio on my droid more often....
            Well I have AT&T here with my current phone, in my area and the areas i travel I have not ran into many spots where I don't have coverage. So if that was the only basis for your decision looks like i may be getting an iPhone toward the end of this year.

            Josh #00042
            R.I.P. Dad 1951-2015

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            • #7
              I have a droid (Samsung SPH-M910) from Sprint. Most of the pics I've posted recently have been taken with it. It only has a 3 megapixel camera but it seems to do a pretty good job. The GPS seems to work pretty good but I haven't tried all that sophisticated stuff that DDB is doing but after this write up, I just might have to try some of them.
              Bud
              HERD Member #84

              (Guardian bell from hockeydawg12 and his wife, Jean!)

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              • #8
                love my Droid so far...just got the car mount and I'm sure I'll be able to rig it to the Ultra somehow. Did you know that if you have the location record on when you take a picture that later when you view it you can go under menu-more-view on map and it will launch the google map app and show where the picture was taken.
                Also if you have advanced task killer installed get rid of it.
                I use Juice Defender which allows my battery to last much longer.

                Invaluable site: http://www.droidforums.net/forum/
                Last edited by elPrez; 09-30-2010, 10:23 AM.
                John
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by doublej View Post
                  Well I have AT&T here with my current phone, in my area and the areas i travel I have not ran into many spots where I don't have coverage. So if that was the only basis for your decision looks like i may be getting an iPhone toward the end of this year.
                  Just make sure you have " DATA coverage " in those same areas as this is what I was referring to. Even though I have seen that both At&T and Verizon both had phone coverage, unfortunately in my case lack of the Data coverage from AT&T is what is keeping me from switching. I got excited when it was rumored that Verizon was going to get the IPhone but that did not happen.

                  But if you think about it, If Verizon did have the Iphone you would not see as big of a smart phone market as we have right now. Android phones may have never even happened for that matter. Hmmmm funny how stuff works out like that.
                  HERD # 00075
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                  • #10
                    ahh I was not thinking along those lines thanks...I have plenty of friends here at work with both phones. I will talk with them about their data coverage when traveling...some of them travel out of state quite often as installers.

                    Josh #00042
                    R.I.P. Dad 1951-2015

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by doublej View Post
                      ahh I was not thinking along those lines thanks...I have plenty of friends here at work with both phones. I will talk with them about their data coverage when traveling...some of them travel out of state quite often as installers.
                      That is pretty much what I did, I talked to a couple vendors that were " road warriors " and pretty much reinforced my decision at the time. But your mileage may vary in your area. Good luck
                      HERD # 00075
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                      • #12
                        I have the motorola droid and I like it. Bring up pandora radio, plug the droid into the boombox and I have commercial free radio while at work. Did'nt know about the photobucket app. DDB. Thanks, I'm going to look for it now.
                        Herd member #85

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                        • #13
                          I thought the Version / iPhone thing was still a possibility. We used the iPhone on our ride up to the dragon earlier this year and used the weather app alot. Worked out great. by brother rode from Houston to Charlotte and missed a couple rain showers that way as well.
                          The hardest part about a Zombie Apocalypse, will be pretending I'm not excited!

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                          • #14
                            I dont care about the fifth paragraph that much. not like Arty or Air is in the in the mix
                            THE NEGATIVE ONE no better don't click
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                            How's my Spelin, CALL 1-800-BOSS to report my bad spelizin

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                            • #15
                              Dont need no fone goin to thinkin its smarter than me.
                              THE NEGATIVE ONE no better don't click
                              https://www.youtube.com/watch?x-yt-c...-ts=1422579428
                              How's my Spelin, CALL 1-800-BOSS to report my bad spelizin

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