Bicycle Travel > GPS & Digital Data Discussion

GPS and phone's battery

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How long can your phone last using GPS?  What is the best way to maximize the use of GPS on your phone?

Unicycle Mike

I put the phone in airplane mode and turn off whatever services I can that I am not using.  I turn of cellular phone function and only use when I want to make a call.  Actually I seldom make calls and tend to use textx or email to keep in touch with family.

I plug in anywhere I stop if there is an outlet.
It used to be easier when my phone had a removeable battery.  I'd carry several.  Power banks/wallets can somewhat replace that function.

I tend to not use turn by turn directions and on some trips just turn the phone all the way off where directions are simple enough.

That allows a good bit of life, but it varies with specific usage,  Different usage means different battery life.  Tracking all day, leaving a lot of functions on and so on all use battery.

Some folks use solar or hub or rim generators.

Just so many variables...

John Nettles:
There are too many variables to accurately guess.  How many miles a day do you ride, how many hours a day do you ride, do you play music/podcast while riding, how big is your current battery, how old is your current phone, do you need to keep the cellular data on (for phone or tracking purposes), etc.?
I would suggest you take a few days and play with the it in the same style you would use while on tour, i.e. if you plan on keeping your phone calls off, then turn them off; Recharge every few hours for 15 minutes, etc.

If you are concerned or you MUST have the phone map app, then consider carrying a small power bank.

Tailwinds, John

thank you for the time you spent in sharing.  It made sense.

Unicyle Mike

I put the phone in airplane mode after loading the ride (I use RideWithGPS).  If there aren't many turns I will turn navigation off to save the battery.  You can also download queue sheets and just view them and turn GPS on when needed.  By taking those steps the phone will usually last all day. 

My default is using my Garmin 830 for ride recording and directions with the phone as a backup. 

I also carry a battery backup supply when touring.  It will recharge all my devices once then takes a long time to charge it back up.


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