App of the Week: ViewRanger

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By Sylvia Lorico 

Navigate anywhere around the world with offline maps and GPS using the ViewRanger app. Available for Android and iOS, the app allows you to save maps and routes to guide your devices before you leave home.

Users are required to create an account with Facebook or email before using the app. ViewRanger uses GPS in order to download and record locations to save for later use offline.

The app will take you to a giant map based on your GPS location. From there, users can plot routes, add points of interests or record their outdoor activity.

Once they created a route, the information is saved under the “my maps” tab in the app. There is also an option to “BuddyBeacon” your location, which allows you to see and share locations without other ViewRanger users.

If users want to navigate an area outside of their topographical location, they can manually search for a location on the app. From there they can plot routes or add points of interest that can be saved for offline use.

By tapping on the upwards arrow in the bottom right, users will be taken to the “Skyline” feature. This feature can identify points of interest like peaks, places and water within a few miles radius. The app uses augmented reality technology to do so.

The double arrow tab will take you to a matching results page. Based on location, the app will recommend hiking, biking or walking routes. Each route lists the maximum number of kilometres, the surface type and difficulty. It also lays out the route in detail so users can download and save it onto ViewRanger for later use. All of these routes were created by other users who hiked or biked the particular area.

There is also a social media-like feature for users. They can follow other explorers, record potential tracks hiked and see any routes they downloaded.

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