CoPilot GPS for iOS
Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Requires iOS 3.0 or later.
Age Rating: 4+
Free; additional features via in-app purchases
CoPilot GPS is a satnav app for the iPad and iPhone. The basic app is a free download from the app store and includes maps for one country or region free of charge.
The maps are stored on the iPhone or iPad, and no data connection is required as they are used from the device rather than across a data connection. This has the obvious advantage that when you don’t have a data connection available you’re not going to lose the directions as to where you need to go. Stored within the maps are points of interest; so if you need to find a hotel it’s likely to be within the app; if it’s not you can search using the Bing search engine or Wikipedia.
You can make a phone call to points of interest directly from the app; a useful touch allowing quick and easy contact with your destination.
If you’re exploring unfamiliar territory on foot you can set the app to walking mode. In this mode the app responds in a form useful for foot-based explorers rather than those in a car; giving pavements rather than roads.
An interesting feature is the inclusion of social network sharing, in that you can let your friends know where you are with updates via Twitter and Facebook. The only potential problem with this is that when letting you friends know via a social networking site that you’re not at home you’re also letting millions of people you don’t know that you’re not at home.
Via an in-app purchase you can upgrade to a voice-guided, turn-by-turn, navigation experience; 3D maps; Safety camera alerts; Speed limit warnings and a lane indicator. You can also purchase ActiveTraffic to get an idea of where the most traffic is at any given time.
Of these the voice-guidance and 3D option should really form a part of the basic feature set. Essentially every satnav has these within their most basic feature set, and it’s a little difficult to get used to a 2D map with no voice assistance.
Macworld Australia‘s buying advice.
The basic CoPilot GPS app is okay, but a little difficult to work with without the inclusion of voice-assistance or 3D maps. The in-app purchase required for these functions isn’t overly expensive, and you always have the alternative of downloading a premium version of the App, priced at $34.99, that includes the functions anyway.