MetroView Nav Australia & NZ

MetroView Android app review

The fact that you can get as good as (if not better) GPS navigation on a phone as by using a separate GPS navigation device is one of the best reasons to have a smartphone these days. An offline app that uses its own quality maps is much better than those that require the internet and I have been experimenting with a range of free and paid apps over the last few years. I recently approached the makers of MetroView as the comments on the Play store seemed very good and they kindly provided a code for me to install their app and test it out.

It has taken me a while to do the full testing – mainly because my aging Huawei phone hadn’t enough memory left to install it, so I decided to install and test it on our 7″ Lenovo tablet. I have to say that I am actually very impressed. Ease of use is right up there in my requirements for a good GPS navigation app, I can’t stand confusing menus or having to exit an app once I have ‘arrived at my destination’ and this was the first thing I discovered with MetroView. I just searched for an address by the usual method of entering city/town, street name, street number and then tapping the large ‘Navigate’ button. The first thing I noticed was that my route could easily be checked by moving the map, which clearly shows street names if you zoom in a little, then to return to navigation mode, I just tapped ‘Exit browse’ – simple.

My next surprise was hearing the great voice providing the guidance – a pleasant male or female voice with an Aussie accent – then I was stunned to hear the directions. Not only did I get the usual ‘take the second exit at the next roundabout’, I got the street names clearly (and accurately) spoken but I also got the next turn after that briefly described. This was a first for me and I was very impressed. There is no annoying ‘turn in 500 metres’ then another ‘turn here’ prompt at the turn itself, just a single turn message in plenty of time prior to the intersection followed by the next turn coming up ahead information message. This feature alone made using the app to navigate a much more pleasant and calm experience than other apps I have used.

I was taken to my destination by the best route and the next pleasant surprise was that house numbers are displayed on the map. When I left I had my last surprise – there were no messages that I had to turn back when I left the app running with the last destination still active! The app assumed that I was finished with that trip as it had got me there and quietly continued displaying where I was and awaiting a new destination. Recalculating if I deliberately turned off the route to test this was very rapid too.

Other features that impressed me were the ability to store the app and maps on the SD card I have installed in the tablet. With an almost 1Gb map this is important for devices with limited built in storage. The lane guidance worked well as did the speed warnings if I crept over the limit or approached a speed camera or school zone and the current speed limit is always displayed on the map. Navigation to one of your contacts is straightforward and there are a lot of POIs (points of interest) available offline including service stations while others can be searched if you have internet access available where you are.

Magnifying the map or changing the angle of view when in 3D mode is a simple matter of tapping the easy to use controls overlaid on the map. I was briefly concerned when I thought that I had to tap the small menu button to change a setting or my destination until I worked out that I could just tap anywhere on the screen to do this which is certainly safer when driving. Finally, the designers have obviously put a lot of thought into what is shown on the top and bottom bars – top has next turn and the street name, bottom has current speed, distance to destination and estimated time to go – in my book that’s perfect.

Yes, it isn’t free but in comparison with other paid navigation apps (or buying a GPS unit) the price is very reasonable in  my opinion. If you want a good, reliable GPS navigation app for Australian or New Zealand driving I reckon you would be hard pressed to find one as good as this.

Andy

Androids4Seniors

MetroView Nav Australia & NZ
Price : A$19.80
Size : 411Mb (plus map)
Needs : 2.2+
MetroView Nav Australia & NZ app review


 

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Andy
About the Author : Andy describes himself as "an older geek" and has been assisting seniors with understanding technology for many years. He is involved with his local seniors computer club and believes that seniors appreciate assistance from those of a similar age group.

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Thanks, Andy

10 Comments on MetroView Nav Australia & NZ

andy said : administrator Report a month ago

Hi James, my understanding is that you need to buy another licence as it's a different type of device but check with the company to confirm this.

Hames said : Guest Report a month ago

Hi andy i have netview backed up on itunes when i use to have an iphone i now have a samsund s7 edge do you know if i can transfer my metroview purchase or do i have to fork out more pension dollars for a new one ta James

Andy said : administrator Report 2 months ago

Hi Andrew, appreciate the comments. As far as the speed readout fluctuations etc, this may be due to the GPS receiver in the device you use it on - have you tried any other nav apps or a speed app to check this? From experience, some phones have much better GPS receivers than others so worth trying that. I agree with you about the accessibility of tasks, however I guess its always a tradeoff between that and showing the route on small screens. To be honest I haven't used MetroView on unsealed roads much and when I have there was no option to avoid them, the only option in MetroView is to avoid toll roads I believe. Cheers and thanks for the feedback Andrew.

AndrewG said : Guest Report 2 months ago

My previous sat nav device was an older Garmin dedicated unit, not a smart phone. But it was nicked from the car, so I thought I’d try the smart phone app instead. I purchased and installed Metro View. Please take the comments below as coming from an inexperienced user of navigation apps, as I said, my previous experience is with a Garmin. Basically I agree with most of what you say. However I have a few comments after a long trip in the country. Firstly, compared to the Garmin, the speed readout is very unstable. It jumps up and down more than 5 kph either side of my true speed. Even on the freeway this happens. I sort of have to average out the readings in my head and calculate what speed I am really doing. The old Garmin was pretty stable, plus/minus 1 kph mostly, and dead stable on a straight freeway. As I like to sit right on the speed limit and rely on the sat nav to give me this information accurately, I find this a major failing, but maybe all apps will be like this on this phone? I won’t know until I try another one. Secondly, I wish there were more common tasks accessible by buttons direct on the navigation screen. An example would be to quit a route. To do this (as far as I can tell) I have to tap the screen once to get into the menu, then scroll down to find “stop navigating” then hit that button. Adding a detour or diversion mid-route would be another example I would like to do direct from the main screen. Thirdly, I wish it had an option to avoid gravel roads in my nice clean car. However this seems to be wishful thinking on my part, as I can’t find any reliable recommendations for an app that does this (apparently Sygic has the option, but not sure how well it works).

andy said : administrator Report 3 months ago

Hi Rod. Link to get MetroView is under my review as all apps that I write about are. Of course the usual way to get it on your phone or tablet is from the Google Store - just start this and search for metroview then install from there.

Rodney said : Guest Report 3 months ago

Hi, extremely interested in purchasing,would appreciate your giving me detail of the latest version, and download site url. thanks Rod

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