Recommended Android application for outdoor mapping?


I looked at the help and wiki sites before asking, but there are a lot of hits, some of them date back to 2010, and the list of Android applications doesn’t include reviews so I can’t zero in on good applications.

I’m an OSM newbie, and would like to find an Android application with the following features that I can use on a tablet hooked on my bike before heading for a mapping session:

  • Provides an easy way to enable/disable GPS + wifi to speed up localizing

  • Works with either online or offline maps, since offline maps work faster and with no data connection

  • Records and shows a track in real time as an easy way to map a city and see where I’ve been already

  • Provides a simple way to add a node + tags + comment + geotagged picture, and add them later to OSM after getting home

One of the first tasks I’d like to do, is add all the bike racks where I live since, at this point, OSM includes almost none of them. So I need an application that is fast and easy to use to map stuff I see in the street for later edition to OSM.

I know of the following Android applications, but don’t know if they support those features:

  • OsmAnd

  • OruxMaps

  • Locus

  • GpsMid

  • ShareNav (based on GpsMid)

If you can recommend other apps and features that are good to have, please do.

Thank you.

You could try Vespucci (for editing on Android-Devices) or OSMTracker (to make text- or audio-notes and pictures (you can also predefine texts to enter them with one click) and evaluate those at home (i.e. with JOSM)). Since you wrote you’re new to OSM and wish to stop only briefly (if at all) while driving, I would recommend OSMTracker.

Thanks for the tip. I just tried OSMTracker, but unless it can be customized, it seems to be mostly meant for car drivers and is, thus, missing tags useful for bicycles. I’ll read up to make sure I’m not missing anything, and try Vespucci as well.

It can be customized (Settings->“Button presets”, file format’s documentation is here). I’ve not yet done this myself, since I’m usually using voice-notes or otherwise need only one or two buttons (for which it is acceptable to remember which Button I “abused”).

Thanks. I’ll see if a preset is available for adding bike-related nodes.

I use OSMTracker too, with customized buttons. For Mapping I don’t use offline maps, but if you want offline maps I recommend OSMAnd (you can use it online too) this is really a great application and they update their maps nearly every month (altough I update my maps only 2 or 3 times per year). IMHO OSMAnd is only for navigation and not for mapping. So you can combine both maps if you want: OSMTracker for tracking and online maps + OSMAnd for online/offline maps.

I think Vespucci is not a good choice because it is very complex for new users so I think rayquaza is right, you should map wiht OSMTracker and put your informations in the map with JOSM.