Top Outdoor Android Apps Pick

In our last Backpacking trip, besides Cambodia most of the destinations we did not use any guide book only our Android phones and a 7" Laptop which we brought it along just in case our camera SD cards were full and we could transfer the info to the laptop. At least the laptop screen was much bigger compare to our phones.

However we did not use any 3G network but tapping to surrounding WiFi network. Surprising Cambodia has abundant of WiFi, every hotel we been from Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Kep all have WiFi. Another option we could buy a local 3G Sim Card but then again if we were out of the city, we might not be able to get a good 3G coverage. One traveller mentioned that in Phnom Penh she paid $5 for a Hello Sim Card and $2/ day for unlimited internet usage and she had the fastest network compared to places like Thailand, New Zealand and Australia.  

Here are our Picks from last trip and some Apps we should have used, some of these Apps we did use in previous camping trips but will briefly explain our usage. 

Our Top Outdoor Android Apps Pick (in no particular order)
  • Maps by Google
  • GPS Essentials by Mictale
  • My Tracks by Google
  • Navigation by Google
  • Facebook
  • Checklist by Yeno
  • CamScanner by IntSig Information
  • Clean Master by KS Mobile
  • Exchange Rates by Russell Wilson
  • Hanping Chinese Classic by Embermitre
  • SAS Survival Guide Lite by Trellisys
  • First Aid by British Red Cross
  • Unit Converter by Android Tools (HK. China, Taiwan)
  • SwissArmyKnife by Digital & Dreams
  • Smart Measure by Smart Tools
  • TripAdvisor
  • KeepSafe
  • Google Drive
  • Adobe Reader
  • Skype
  • EverNote
  • WhatsApp
  • Tango or Line

One of the advantage of Google Map is that we can download Offline Map and use GPS to navigate. However some of the information will not be available such as bus service or guide to local places unless we have an internet connection. We did experience unable to download Bangkok Map. In such case we used Map Cache which will be tedious as we needed to scroll through the city at different zoom level. Normally we do it at 500m and 1km range, outside the city we do it at 2km and 5km range. 

Otherwise here was how we did it, for a start with internet connection using laptop (better option) or phone we always Star our start point such as hotel location, then we Star the places we like to visit. All these Stars will be saved under My Places in Google Map which will be in the phone. From here we wre able to use Google Navigation to plan our route or check with the GPS if we were heading the right direction. Our No.1 must have Apps

 GPS Essentials by Mictale
Like our Garmin GPS we could use this Apps to check locked on satellites for precise location. Mostly of the time we used the compass function however what makes this interesting is that the camera function has a HUD screen and when taken a photo it will mark a Waypoint which we can refer back too. The best part of this Apps is Waypoints, like Google Star location for My Place, this is much easier to use. Also a list of way point can be loaded using KML or GPX formats

There are 2 maps option, one Google Map and the other various preloaded maps options which we have yet to try.

My Tracks by Google
This is probably a fun Apps however if you prefer to keep track on fitness this will be an ideal apps. We can share it on FB or Google + and at the same time can save the info to Google Drive. 

This Apps allows you to sync with Heart Rate monitor, yet to try it out. We use this Apps just to keep track the distance we hike or bike.  

The setback on this Apps is that if using the Map function, we still need a 3G otherwise it will still record using GPS and once have internet function the map will show up. 

Navigation by Google
This is a cool Apps that works with Google Map. All the Starred locations in Google Map My Place will show in this Apps so all we had to do was choose the destination.  It works similarly to Google map on PC which will provide all the route information. However you will need an internet connection to get the route but once Offline it will still show direction list.

Guess we do not have to say much, an excellent Apps to keep in touch with friends

Checklist by Yeno
No longer supported but found this Apps rather useful. What we were looking for is that we can have a Group Checklist then sub-divided to Checklists and itemized with added note. In the itemized list we could skip items that we do not wish to add on in the checklist.

The best fun part on this Apps is the text to speech, apparently the pronunciation is rather accurate and literally we do not have to look at the phone. Chinese character input is possible but yet to check on the text to speech function.

CamScanner by IntSig Information
Here is the vid to explain all....loving it especially we need to scan our travel documents on take on site information.

Clean Master by KS Mobile
My old Sony Xperia phone does not have much internal memory only 420mb so relied on this Apps to keep it clean and running smoothly.

Exchange Rates by Russell Wilson
Fantastic Apps not only when travelling but also when doing Online shopping. We can have various currencies at one time just to compare the rates.

Hanping Chinese Classic by Embermitre
Nothing much on using this App on outdoor trips but comes it handy when I forget the Mandarin word to explain to my Taiwanese friends. Have both Simplified and Traditional version.

SAS Survival Guide Lite by Trellisys
I'm a SAS fan, own 3 books and now this Apps. Great for reading and trying out new skills. Most of the contents are similar to the guide book. This vid below shows a full paid version.

First Aid by British Red Cross
This comes in handy when needed otherwise is a good read with graphic illustration. Will never delete it.

Unit Converter by Android Tools (HK. China, Taiwan)
This is a rather rare App that you can convert Chinese Units in English. Example in Taiwan they use Ping for area which can be converted to our preference.

SwissArmyKnife by Digital & Dreams
Rather useful in certain ways, the level gauge is useful when setting a tent on the ground or postioning our BOV for a night.

Smart Measure by Smart Tools
Measure distance from object which is useful for hiking but still having hard time setting it up, otherwise if work correctly can be rather useful

Most of our backpacking trips relied on TripAdvisor, they are far better than Lonely Planet however we will need an internet connection for this to work. Definitely must have for travelling and visiting nearby places.

It is a vault, we protect info such as travelling documents, credit cards, bank info just in case we loose our phone. Otherwise when needed is all in the phone. We can safe guard private photos from prying eyes too.

Google Drive
We use Google Drive as Cloud server. We still can access Word, Excel, PDF and other documents when needed. Also a much safer place to store and backup documents in case we loose our hardware.

Adobe Reader
A safer way to store document is in PDF format such as using CamScanner, so basically we need this App to ran the OCR documents

Sometimes we need to do a land line calling and frankly, Skype in our opinion is still the best for such call.

Had this Software on PC for a while but only when we returned we realised it's potential. Works like a note book and pencil, could save internet information or photos when needed. Should have use it in our last backpacking trips instead on pen and paper and further more able to Sync Android, PC or laptop at the same time.

Friends had asked me to try out so we can comms. Not really a messenger guy but it really save $$ from SMS when sending messages overseas. Have yet to try any calls so let see how this Apps prove useful to us.

Tango or Line?
Now this is an interesting Apps for Free Internat calls. we can still send messages however we found the flaw in Tango that our contact must have this App installed with a phone contact number in our phone otherwise it will never show on the friend list.

Tried Tango and talked to son in Singapore using WiFi calling his 3G and was crystal clear with unnoticeable lag but he claims Skype on his end was better

So here you have it, these are our lists, if your any Apps that you like to share, let us know.


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