It was raining cats and dogs this morning when I decided to get out and give Garmap and Nokia Maps a spin. I needed to

Taunting Garmap for Mobile and Nokia Maps

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It was raining cats and dogs this morning when I decided to get out and give Garmap and Nokia Maps a spin. I needed to pickup a desk diary at the office. In the last few days, I had bookmarked both my office and residence on both applications.

So this test run was more-or-less to see how accurate either applications are in terms of route planning.

Nokia Maps

Nokia Maps was up first. Getting into my car, I launched the application, located my office premises on it and instructed it to guide me there. Nokia maps did a fine job, presenting me with a route to follow.

The voice instructions were on spot with directions such as: “Turn right and then the next right turn“, “Turn right after 355 metres“, “Take the next turn left and you have arrived at your destination“, and as I pulled up in the car park, the soothing female British voice clipped, “You have arrived at your destination“. Yes; that felt good.

In the course of the trip, I decided to play pranks on the application and deliberately disobeyed some turn instructions. Nokia Maps wasn’t fazed. My guide’s voice would simply pip, “Recalculating route”, then re-draw the visual guide and give me another set of instructions.

I know those streets, and can testify that Nokia Maps was very accurate leading me through.

Garmap for Mobile

On completing my task at the office, I launched Garmap for Mobile for the return trip home. It drew up a return route – the exact route Nokia Maps had originally drawn on my way from home earlier.

This time, I headed in the opposite direction. A few seconds later, Garmap told me, “Re-calculating route“, re-drew the on-screen route, and gave me the next turn instruction. The instruction was spot on (I know every street in that area and where they terminate). I disobeyed and kept going.

Another re-calculation and corresponding voice direction. Correct once again. I ignored it and kept going. Every now and then, I would obey one direction, but disobey the next two or three. Each time, Garmap re-calculated correctly and gave accurate voice directions.

I noticed that Garmap got one or two street names wrong (the name of the street you are on is displayed on-screen), but it got all routes and turn instructions correct all the way home.

As I drove up in front of the house, Garmap’s voice direction finally said, “Turn left and you are at your destination“. Well, yes, the entrance to my residence stood to my left!


In this test, I rate both applications equally. Yes; it was a short test, but any navigation system that can acccurately guide anyone through the streets of Ojodu (not VI, Ikoyi, Surulere or Ikeja), where my office is located, deserves a fair score.

Though the weather was cloudy, GPS reception by both applications was good.

If you have any ideas you’d like for me to try out in my series of tests on these two applications, let me know.

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  1. Using an N96, Nokia maps seem to have trouble locking and keeping signal. It seem to use a gsm signal (A-GPS) on start up. I hasten to add I do not have it mounted on my dashboard but I doubt that that should be the cause for such patchy reception. I tried it out in Lekki 1, this morning and it seems that the maps in this area would need a refresh. I had Closes looking like Streets, main roads like side roads and it seemed to take a while to refresh. I know it was overcast but I was out in the open. Signal strength was poor. A “so-so” experience for me so far.

  2. Zikora,

    Yes; you can. The N95 is a Symbian device and has GPS built-in. You can call Alireta on 08084391076 to place your order.

  3. Babadiya,

    Unfortunately, Garmap for Mobile is not compatible with the iPhone. It is available only for Symbian and Windows Mobile smartphones.

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