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Scout GPS Navigation, ETA, Maps & Traffic for iOS

By TeleNav Free Editors' Rating

Editors' Review

shelbybrown Jun 14, 2012

In light of Apple's recent announcements about its maps app, the idea of another navigation app for the iPhone might seem redundant, but Apple's program will have a hard time matching the route guidance capabilities of Telenav's Scout.

This recent free navigation app builds on Telenav's extensive experience in mobile navigation. Telenav came up with a new interface design and made the app free as a way of competing in the increasingly cutthroat world of navigation software.

Scout's major drawbacks are that it is strictly an online app, and voice prompts require a $9.99-a-year subscription. I also found some aspects of the interface a little bit subtle, making it not always apparent how to find certain features of begin navigation.

Most people will find Scout's online requirement no problem, as the majority of navigating is done in places with a data connection. When I drove into an area with no cell reception, Scout's maps disappeared, although it did still show a line indicating my direction on the screen. Unlike some other navigation apps, Scout can not preload maps for a route.

The main interface combines a small map, a search box, points of interest, and buttons for home and work addresses. These latter buttons automatically compute the drive time for the home and work addresses saved in the app, showing these times right on the main interface. This feature can be particularly useful for people who want to determine the best time to head for work or home, as the drive times will take traffic into account if the app includes the voice guidance annual subscription.

When I first started using Scout, I did not notice any favorites or recent destinations list, and found myself looking up addresses repeatedly with the search box. Poking around the interface, I finally found that touching the Drive button took me to a screen with a recent destination list, a link to my phone's contacts, and similar saved addresses.

Similarly, after finding a destination with search, Scout brings up a nice little card for the place that includes the address, phone number, crowdsourced reviews, and a button to share the location through e-mail or text messaging. But there is no button that says "navigate" or "set this address as a destination." Instead, I had to touch the address on the screen, which caused Scout to calculate routes.

Scout offered three routes for each destination I chose, then required me to pick one of them and push the navigate button to begin route guidance. It seemed like a lot of steps to go through to begin navigation, but it was nice to have the multiple routes shown right from the start.

Without the voice prompt upgrade, Scout is a purely visual navigator, and does not take traffic into account. But it worked very well as long as I could clip the phone somewhere in the car where I could see it. Its turn instructions were easy to follow and shown well in advance of upcoming turns. It also shows maps in 2D or 3D views, at the driver's preference.

Adding the voice guidance subscription, Scout became much more useful. In fact, I found that I began to rely on it for most navigation, even if I already knew my route. With the upgrade, it does an excellent job of integrating traffic. Frequently I would start out on a trip, and Scout would announce that it adjusted the route based on a traffic problem up ahead. It is quite satisfying to go cruising down a clear road, imagining that somewhere nearby is a massive jam-up.

The voice prompts made it unnecessary to put my phone up on the dashboard, as they included the names of the streets on which I would be turning. These voice prompts also talked through multiple, close-together turns before I reached them, giving some advanced preparation. I was also able to turn off my iPhone's screen, saving its battery, and still hear the voice prompts.

On arriving at a destination, Scout does not automatically end its route guidance, which would be nice. Instead, I had to either touch the end trip button, which kind of disappears in the lower right hand corner of the route guidance screen, or shut down the app. Unlike some other navigation apps, Scout does not automatically resume a route when it is shut down then restarted.

One other feature that might keep Scout relevant once Apple's Maps app becomes generally available is its integration with the Scout.me Web site and in-car infotainment systems. The Web site is supposed to let users select destinations on their PCs and share them with the phone app. That would be useful when, for example, getting an e-mail with a physical address and pasting it into the Web site. However, the Web site is still in beta, and never linked up with my phone.

The other component of the Scout ecosystem, integration with cars, will have to wait until automakers implement the compatible software. Telenav has a strong working relationship with Ford, so I would expect it would be the first automaker to incorporate Scout. With full implementation, drivers should be able to find a destination using the phone app or Web site, and send it to the car's navigation system.

Full Specifications

What's new in version 3.8.1

We continue to focus on the people that matter:* Share your drive and real time ETA.* Automatic Notifications -- A great way to let your family know that you're on the way home from work, or that you've arrived safely at your destination. Configure it once, and we'll do the rest for you.

General

Release June 10, 2016
Date Added June 10, 2016
Version 3.8.1

Operating Systems

Operating Systems iOS
Additional Requirements Compatible with: iphone4, iphone4, ipad2wifi, ipad2wifi, ipad23g, ipad23g, iphone4s, iphone4s, ipadthirdgen, ipadthirdgen, ipadthirdgen4g, ipadthirdgen4g, iphone5, iphone5, ipodtouchfifthgen, ipodtouchfifthgen, ipadfourthgen, ipadfourthgen, ipadfourthgen4g, ipadfourthgen4g, ipadmini, ipadmini, ipadmini4g, ipadmini4g

Popularity

Total Downloads 6,018
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Developer's Description

Scout - the only app that lets you chat, plan Meet Ups, share your ETA and get turn-by-turn GPS voice directions. Now you can navigate, coordinate and communicate without the hassle of multiple apps. Find the best route with real time traffic and commute alerts. Customize your directions with a swipe of a finger. Keep in touch on the road with voice chat and messaging. Instantly share your location, route and ETA with the friends from your contact list. Set up home and work locations to get traffic alerts so you know when to leave. iPhone 6 users and above can use 3D Touch to get Quick Action shortcuts to key features. Create a Meet Up to send to friends and coordinate together. Make a pit stop on your route and find the cheapest gas, restaurants and other local amenities all while avoiding police speed traps, accidents and traffic jams along the way. New! Click on different routes to see turn-by-turn direction before you start navigating to your destination. New! iOS9 users can now search for their favorites or recents and get quick access to navigation through spotlight search. You can also instantly navigate with Scout to top points of interest, national stores, airports and other key amenities through spotlight search.New! iPhone 6S and 6S Plus users - 3D Touch Quick Actions to instantly navigate to home and work or search for nearby locations. Share ETA Pick your route and share your ETA easily with one or more contacts in a single tap. Scout suggests your most frequently used contacts to share with while on the road. Say hello with Voice Chat Send one-touch voice chat or text messages to your Meet Up group. Only those invited will be able to send and receive messages. Navigate easily Keep your eyes on the road and hands on the wheel with turn-by-turn voice guided GPS directions.Beat traffic Real time traffic and live speed updates help you find the best and quickest route to avoid gridlock. Always be on time Receive notifications when traffic is slower than usual on your daily commute home or to work. Get reminders one hour before your Meet Up event is set to begin and as your guests arrive. Connect with others Create a Meet Up, let your friends or family member knows when you are going to be there.Get live ETAs Scout shows when Meet Up attendees are on the move with real-time ETAs on the map. Now youll always know when a friend is late and whether five minutes away really means I havent left yet.Do it your way Save your customized route preferences, favorite map views and schedule personalized commute departure alerts for home and work.Make a pit stop Discover new places along your route for the cheapest gas, restaurants for a bite to eat or other amenities.Never get lost Scout, powered by OpenStreetMap (OSM), provides the most up-to-date map information with updates from a community of more than 1.6 million editors. You can download offline maps for a fee to always know where youre going when your signal is spotty.Got feedback? - We want to hear from you! Our support team is here to help. Follow us on Twitter, @Scout, and hit us up with questions or comments. You can join our community at https://ourcommunity.scout.meStay in the know - Connect with us on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Vine.Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/scoutbytelenavYouTube:https://www.youtube.com/user/ScoutbyTeleNavInstagram:https://instagram.com/scoutbytelenav/Vine:http://bit.ly/1N1clKQ-- Whats the word on Scout?NEW! - Scout wins 2015 Best Lifestyle App from Mobile App Awards Scout is as easy on the eyes as it is easy to use. - MashableScout wins Best for Design Travel & Leisure, Best GPS Apps for TravelNotes:Continued use of GPS running in the background can decrease battery life.Scouts map and search coverage is currently for the USA only.