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What device do you use FieldMaps on?

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05-05-2022 10:05 AM
madxwild
New Contributor II

Hi community! Just wondering what devices does anyone use for their field data collection? Historically I've been a big fan if TDC600 due it's high gps accuracy but am on a lookout for a more cost effective (but ideally obviously losing little of the GPS accuracy) solution. Running FieldMaps on my android phone at the moment, but the accuracy is well out, by at least 5-10m so just wondering if there's anything in the market I could either add on to my phone to get the GPS accuracy to be higher or are there any other devices you guys are using that are really smashing it out of the ballpark in the point and feature collection game in the field with FieldMaps?

 

Any advice much appreciated 🙃

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12 Replies
SteveTaylor6
Occasional Contributor

Good question. A good way to test how accurate a smartphone actually is is to use the GPS test app by GitHub. We run the top end series Samsungs and pro version of iPhones. The Field Maps app often has the GPS accuracy at 3.2 to 4.2m. But if you run the GPS test app, they are actually often running at 1.8m accuracy. As good as a purpose built GPS. More than adequate for mapping our project sites. To improve to below 2 metres you can buy a Bluetooth surveyor quality GPS. That will give cm accuracy, but they are expensive.

 

 

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RobertBorchert
Frequent Contributor III

I have taken my iPhone out in my front yard and turned on one of my apps with Air Photos behind them and stood at my mailbox and the cursor came up almost exactly on the place I was standing.  However, 2 days later it was in the middle of the street

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nspittlemeister_LCFPD
Occasional Contributor

We run iPad Pros with Field Maps along with external GNSS receivers of various accuracy levels that connected via bluetooth. A few of the receivers we utilize include EOS Arrow Gold, Bad Elf Flex, Trimble R1 and Bad Elf GNSS Receiver. All work well with Field Maps and provide differing levels of accuracy for various mapping/surveying tasks.

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RobertBorchert
Frequent Contributor III

if you need low end GPS accuracy for collecting of points I would stick with the TDC600 or get a complete Trimble system for point and streaming collection.

I am not the biggest fan of Apple but web apps seem to work better on Apple.

To that end we use iPhones and iPads.  If your not doing point collection than being off by 30 feet is negligible. 

 

TDC600 is only 1.5 m gnss accurate so that is nothing go get excited about for accurate placement of points. 

If you use that to place a buried asset and want to come back later being off by up to 1.5 meters is pretty big.

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madxwild
New Contributor II

Hi everyone, some great input here - looking at potentially getting a Trimble R1 (albeit it looks like it may have been discontinued?). I do a lot of ecological mapping work, e.g. habitat delineation, field survey data collection, veg plots etc. so 1.5m accuracy from TDC600 for my work is already pretty decent, so not really needing anything more accurate than that. However, ideally looking to just use my Samsung S20 for this work now instead and pair it with an external GNSS receiver if I can get similar or more accurate results than TDC600, and not have to drag 2 separate devices to the field. Assuming I could potentially just attached the R1 to my backpack or smth and it would work pretty ok?

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RobertBorchert
Frequent Contributor III

Making a decision on GPS equipment can be confusing and technical.  There are so many different options.

As you mention you are gathering locations for ecological mapping so you don't need to spend the  money for cm accurate gear.  

However, to that end an iPhone would also be good enough.  

I don't know if I am able to post this company's name but https://frontierprecision.com/ 

serves a lot of the needs in the Midwest (USA) and are very customer oriented and fair priced.

 

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EricCollinsOVV
New Contributor III

Doing paid work, I wouldn't rely on an iPhone with autonomous positioning. If you can get an R1, they can get SBAS corrections so get your accuracies down much better. Otherwise your run the risk of being 30 feet out

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nspittlemeister_LCFPD
Occasional Contributor

We utilize a number of Trimble R1 units for ecological monitoring and they do work well for that. Yes they could clip to a backpack or to a tablet sized device. Trimble also makes a small antenna that can clip or slide into the top of a hat.

 

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SuzyFer
New Contributor II

Hi,

Curious to find out what you ended up going with? I would be looking for a cost-effective method for ecological surveying - company currently has iPads/older iPhones + access to Field Maps but would be looking to add some GNSS receivers to the mix to improve accuracy.

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