Has a weekend trip away ever taken you to an area with no phone or internet coverage, only to find that your standard GPS or Navigation App doesn’t have any relevant maps? Or have you spotted a road turn-off not shown on your GPS and wondered where it would take you? A large proportion of Australia, including unsealed and “4WD” tracks, are not covered in detail by mainstream navigation tools, and that’s where ExplorOz has always excelled. In 16 years of operation they have made it their business to cover the “niche” market of travellers who want to find the best locations this country has to offer, and share this information with other like-minded adventurers. Well before the 4WD or SUV became the vehicle of choice for families, ExplorOz has been compiling information on where these vehicles can take you and what you need to know to get there.
The ExplorOz Traveller App could be the best investment any Australian makes to their vehicle, offering crucial trip planning and navigation tools, guaranteeing that wherever you are, you’ll have the information you need on-hand. Adding to this, ExplorOz have been actively adapting this app to consistently meet the needs of its users. Since its initial release just 5 months ago, the ExplorOz Traveller App has already had 15 version updates, which represents a new version every 10 days.
The reason for so many updates has been the influx of early adopters who are passionate about having reliable and accurate mapping resources for their mobile devices. These app users are regular outback travellers who need to place a great amount of trust in the maps and navigation tools they use.
ExplorOz is a trusted brand providing online services that 4WD travellers and Grey Nomads have been relying upon for the past 16 years via www.exploroz.com but the Traveller app is their first product that allows the entire suite of ExplorOz navigation tools – Treks, Places, Maps, and Track Logging to be released into an all-in-one offline bundle for use on iOS and Android devices.
Whilst the ExplorOz Traveller app is not without competition, its late entry into the app market has actually brought a wealth of positive input from experienced app users who were not happy with what the competition was offering in GPS mapping and navigation apps.
A big part of the popularity for ExplorOz products is the company’s reputation for listening to user feedback and suggestions. “Talking with our audience has been a key part of our company’s product evolutions”, says ExplorOz Content Strategist Michelle Martin.
“When we launched the ExplorOz Traveller app it was our first app but not our first time providing detailed topographic mapping for GPS devices”, said Mrs Martin. “We just had to figure out how to keep it simple, yet still provide the wealth of data and resources that we are renown for.”
Reviewers have certainly been comparing the app favourably to other apps in the market:-
Tex See says, “Love it, best gps map app –I travel Oz for months at a time, visit home for a month and then head off again. I own every gps map app on the play store and this one is the best by far of all of them. Having offline capability helps me find those super remote stealth camping sites where no one else goes!
David Darch says, “Great program with very clear premium maps. It replaces TrackRanger and Memory Maps (with AUS TOPO maps and Western maps). I once considered them to be ideal for my exploration of Australia but ExplorOz Traveller is many times better and easier to use. I wish I had it when I did 5 months up the Queensland coast and across the Savanah Way last year and Western Queensland and down the centre this year.
KiwiAnglersays, “I am a fulltime “grey nomad ” have been travelling around Australia now for 6 years and have covered over 200,000 kms – a lot of this travel has been off road – i have been using another programme for that travelling but have now switched over to Traveller – great app – easy to use – intuitive – thoroughly recommend.”
The app includes some unique aspects not seen in other GPS Navigation apps such as content syncing with the ExplorOz website where over 85,000 Places (GPS reference points) and over 180 Treks are managed. Users of both the app and the website can contribute to the data by adding photos, details, and reviews, which helps verify the data and keep it fresh. A very popular feature is the free updates available in-app upon demand providing the latest Place and Trek data as offline content to your device before heading off on a trip.
Another unique aspect to the app’s content is the included Treks, which feature the suite of over 180 ExplorOz Trek Notes from all regions of Australia. Unique to using the Treks in the app is the ability to navigate along the route with offline auto-guidance plus the option to modify (by adding to, or removing Place waypoints from the supplied itinerary).
App users can also enable Track Logging to record, save, and even share a journey with a personalised tracking map available on a private webpage for family/friends to follow.
The major new features added to the app since the initial release, include:
• New download option to save the offline topo maps to SD card (Android) – to suit devices with limited internal storage available
• New download option to store public Comments for Places on device for offline use – crowdsourced information on POIs, such as what the facilities are like, the best spot to camp etc
• New download option to store public Comments for 182 Treks on device for offline use – read advice and feedback from others who have done the trip themselves
• New option to select preferred direction of travel display on navigation map (Travel Up or North Up) – orientation of map gives users perspective on what’s around them
• New sharing tool added to all Places, and all Treks (share to Facebook, Pinterest, Messages, etc). – share your trip/plans with your social network
• New Speed and Heading display panel added to maps – greater navigation and trip feedback
• New option to select Treks by selecting route lines from a simple map of Australia – find a detailed auto-nav plan including POIs along the way for wherever you plan to go
• New offline sync facility to allow app users to share Private Places across multiple devices – cross device trip planning made easy
• New option to save any nav plan as a Private Trek for future use – pre-planning for the organised adventurer
• New Snail Trail feature to record and display up to last 50km of travel – see where you’ve been at a glance/find your way back
• Plus, significant development to allow better compatibility with older Android devices (v4.x) – for the owners of older/budget Android devices, no need to upgrade to a more expensive device
ExplorOz Traveller ensures that everyone can tackle outback trips with confidence.
COST: ExplorOz Traveller cost AUD$59.99 and is available from the App Store and Google Play.