Loading Notifications...

Tablet for the Outdoors

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.
 Chopper 14 Oct 2020

Can anyone recommend a decent tablet for use when I'm on big walks. Although I have a smartphone with digital mapping I sometime find I like to be able to have a larger display. Some years ago a friend of mine had a Nexus 7 which seemed to fit the bill. However I understand that they've long gone.

Obviously it needs to be reasonably rugged or at least have some sort of protective case. Plenty of storage including an SD card as well.

Any advice appreciated.

2
In reply to Chopper:

For viewing maps I'm yet to see anything better than the iPad (with a hefty bumper case) because of its very high resolution screen.  Pricey, though, and no SD slot.  Can't help but think a paper map may be a better answer.

Post edited at 09:03
1
 Graeme G 14 Oct 2020
In reply to Chopper:

My particular favourite is ginger tablet. Although plain is usually acceptable.

1
 artif 14 Oct 2020
In reply to Chopper:

I looked in to this a few years back, one of the concerns mentioned was if the GPS function worked without a network connection. Some of the apple products wouldn't. Despite the advertising, mobile coverage is not good in the UK. I'm sat in an office in the South East and none of us have any connection to any network.

I ended up with a Samsung Galaxy tablet that I still use, good GPS and no network connection required and it has SD card slots, for saving/removable data storage. It gets thrown in my travel bag and regularly used in my leaky old Land rover with no case or screen protection.

Things may have changed, but worth looking at. 

2
 Chopper 14 Oct 2020
In reply to artif:

> I looked in to this a few years back, one of the concerns mentioned was if the GPS function worked without a network connection. Some of the apple products wouldn't. Despite the advertising, mobile coverage is not good in the UK. I'm sat in an office in the South East and none of us have any connection to any network.

> I ended up with a Samsung Galaxy tablet that I still use, good GPS and no network connection required and it has SD card slots, for saving/removable data storage. It gets thrown in my travel bag and regularly used in my leaky old Land rover with no case or screen protection.

> Things may have changed, but worth looking at. 


Thanks. Sounds good.

 Mike-W-99 14 Oct 2020
In reply to artif:

The iPad gps works fine without any connectivity.

 WaterMonkey 14 Oct 2020
In reply to Chopper:

I recently bought a Huawei media pad pro from Argos for £119.

It has built in gps and I use it on my boat with the navionics app. 
I don’t see any reason why you couldn’t use it for walking other than battery life.

Battery life with GPS running is about 6 hours.

Much cheaper than an iPad and does the same

Post edited at 10:29
 Stichtplate 14 Oct 2020
In reply to Chopper:

> Can anyone recommend a decent tablet for use when I'm on big walks.

Increasingly with age, that'd be ibuprofen.

1
 dunnyg 14 Oct 2020
In reply to Stichtplate:

People use tablets for geology fieldwork sometimes, so research down those lines may be useful. Ive used an ipad for similar, but usually car based fieldwork. I can see it working for your application, but personally I am not sure I would want to take a grands worth of kit out if a decent paper map is available. Get a (really) good case if you do! 

 yeti 14 Oct 2020
In reply to Chopper:

A map is lighter and so much less reliant on signal strength, and gps only works with an adequate signal, so I just photocopy the bit of map I need and take that.

but... I'm old as dirt and don't like trusting things that stop working for no apparent reason

hmm just re read your post so... how far is a big walk, and where do you recharge your devices

 wbo2 14 Oct 2020
In reply to Mike-W-99: If the GPS chip is there... it isn't on all models.  I've used an iPad mini for fieldwork and had to get a model with..

The mini was fine, but if I was buying today I'd get a straight ipad - not the air, or pro.  The new version looks very good for the money

1
 ianstevens 14 Oct 2020
In reply to dunnyg:

> People use tablets for geology fieldwork sometimes, so research down those lines may be useful. Ive used an ipad for similar, but usually car based fieldwork. I can see it working for your application, but personally I am not sure I would want to take a grands worth of kit out if a decent paper map is available. Get a (really) good case if you do! 

In contrast we tried using tablets for glaciology and it was a shitshow. Even with "touchscreen friendly" gloves they just couldn't hack it. We switched back to rugged, mini-laptops pretty fast. 

 ianstevens 14 Oct 2020
In reply to yeti:

> A map is lighter and so much less reliant on signal strength, and gps only works with an adequate signal, so I just photocopy the bit of map I need and take that.

> but... I'm old as dirt and don't like trusting things that stop working for no apparent reason

> hmm just re read your post so... how far is a big walk, and where do you recharge your devices

I'm with you on a paper map, but in reality you need to try quite hard to not get a good enough GNSS single these days. Most GNSS chips operate with GPS/GLONASS/Galilleo - manning they can (hypothetically) utilise 31+24+22 satellites - you only need to get 4. The Amin issue is the landscape - for example in cave you'll get none, or in a narrow gorge you'll probably not get 4 (satellite connection is proportional to clear sky) and maybe get some reflections too. My point here is that not getting GNSS signal is a very rare circumstance these days.

 Chopper 14 Oct 2020
In reply to yeti:

> hmm just re read your post so... how far is a big walk, and where do you recharge your devices

Two weeks hut to hut or camp to camp. Charging in huts, gites or by solar panel

 dunnyg 14 Oct 2020
In reply to ianstevens:

I mainly used them in the mediterranean, gloves probably were less of an issiue! Useful point though!

In reply to Chopper:

This bloke knew his tablets way back,  like Before Christ, never mind before the internet.


1
 Welsh Kate 14 Oct 2020
In reply to mick taylor:

Yeah, but the gps was clearly rubbish - took him years to find his way to his target destination!

In reply to Welsh Kate:

Yup, and then he died.  Had no luck, that Moses bloke.

 Richard Horn 14 Oct 2020
In reply to Chopper:

They tend to be a bit specialist but e-ink tablets are far more readable outdoors in sunlight (albeit blank and white). 

 Fredt 14 Oct 2020
In reply to yeti:

> A map is lighter and so much less reliant on signal strength, and gps only works with an adequate signal, so I just photocopy the bit of map I need and take that.

gps doesn't need a signal. I put my Iphone in Airplane Mode when walking, and that also extends the battery life by about 50%

In reply to Welsh Kate:

Apparently he was a hopeless navigator but wouldn't own up to it, his contempories said he was in d' Nile!

Post edited at 19:45
In reply to Chopper:

At work we all have Samsung active 2 tablets. GPS, Sim card, takes a memory card, waterproof, shockproof and though I haven't tested it yet apparently drop proof. Oh and it has a replaceable battery too.

Lasts about 6 hours on a full charge. 

 minimike 15 Oct 2020
In reply to artif:

> I looked in to this a few years back, one of the concerns mentioned was if the GPS function worked without a network connection. Some of the apple products wouldn't.

If your map is available offline, GPS works without data on all Apple products, all the way back to the iPhone 4. I know that from experience having done it in Europe without roaming, in Africa without any coverage etc.

Post edited at 09:51
 artif 15 Oct 2020
In reply to Alkis:

"Apparently"  WIFI only I pads don't have the GPS receiver. I can only relay information from those that have experience in this, as I tend to avoid anything to do with Apple.

I Phones obviously have network capability and the associated GPS receiver, but the question was regarding tablets not phones.

In reply to artif:

Ok, that is a rather different statement to what you said, and a much more valid thing to check:

> I looked in to this a few years back, one of the concerns mentioned was if the GPS function worked without a network connection.

Not having a GPS receiver is a different story to GPS functionality not working without a network connection.

 Cobra_Head 15 Oct 2020
In reply to Chopper:

I find a couple of Viagra sets me up for the day.


This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.