EveryTrail Pro: Easy to Use GPS Enabled App Hobbled by iPhone’s GPS in City Streets

EveryTrail on an iPhone 3G (left) – MyTracks on a Droid (right)

One of my favorite new(ish) smartphone enhancements to emerge over the past few years is the GPS (Global Positioning System) that lets you know where you and your phone are in the world. It has become a must-have component of smartphone produced in the past two years.

The free EveryTrail for iPhone app was the first app I recall reading about that combined the iPhone’s multimedia, GPS, and graphical mapping features to produce a consumer friendly geo-location app for walkers, runners, and bikers.

I was provided a free evaluation copy of the recently released $3.99 Pro version and took it for a quick spin (actually a walk).

EveryTrail Pro (iTunes App Store)

The Pro version provides

– Ad-free interface
– Sync all trips between the iPhone and EveryTrail.com
– Sync all favorite(d) trips between the iPhone and EveryTrail.com
– Video recording (in addition to still photos)

EveryTrail’s Pro version retains the easy to understand and user graphical user interface. However, I ran into a lot of problems with the GPS provided trail during a walk in a city environment with a number of tall building. This is NOT a problem specific to EveryTrail. I see this problem in nearly all GPS-enabled apps on the iPhone including Google Maps. And, I’ve seen this problem on several different iPhone models and devices.

I carried a Droid running the free MyTracks app on the EveryTrail Pro walking test for comparison. As you can see, the Droid and MyTracks provided a much more accurate (though not totally accurate) representation of where I walked during my test.

Given this quick and dirty comparison test and past experience with other iPhone GPS enabled mapping apps, I’m leaning towards simply blaming the iPhone’s GPS capabilities in city environments. I should give it a test in a more building-free area where the iPhone’s GPS performs better in my experience.