This Navigation App Comes With a Feature That Makes Google Maps Feel Outdated

There are plenty of Google Maps alternatives out there, but many people still stick with the most popular choices in this app category.
Sygic GPS Navigation 7 photos
Photo: Sygic
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This is why Google Maps and Waze currently have maybe millions of daily users, even though they may not necessarily be the best when it comes to certain capabilities.

For example, the offline maps implementation in Google Maps isn’t exactly the smoothest, as the way you can download the maps is painful, to say the least. Other apps out there, such as HERE’s navigation software, lets you do the same thing in a more convenient manner, such as simply selecting the country for the offline maps.

At the end of the day, there are plenty of worthy Google Maps alternatives out there, and some of them come with navigation tools that make all these highly popular solutions look outdated.

Enter Sygic GPS Navigation.

If you’ve never tried Sygic’s software, you certainly have to, as it integrates some features that aren’t available elsewhere. And one of them is the Cockpit.

It might sound unusual at first, but Cockpit is actually a great idea. What it does is as simple as it could be: the feature shows real-time statistics about the car based on the sensors of your smartphone.

In other words, you can see essential vehicle and driving information right within the navigation app - make no mistake, this isn’t a replacement for an OBD II scanner, but it provides the driver with additional data that wouldn’t otherwise be available in other apps.

Sygic GPS Navigation
Photo: Sygic

So what exactly does Cockpit show?

First and foremost, the feature will measure the G-force recorded while you drive based on the accelerometer inside your mobile device. While it sounds very complicated at first, it’s actually a way to figure out how aggressive (or sporty, if you wish) you drive. Based on this information, you can change your driving habits and learn to drive more economically.

Then, Sygic’s Cockpit can display the lateral acceleration, also known as lateral G, which indicates the incline and the tilt of the vehicle. This once again helps improve fuel economy, as you can thus determine if you need to change your route – roads with high inclines typically produce higher fuel consumption.

Furthermore, the feature shows the actual speed of the vehicle based on GPS data. The speedometer on the dashboard doesn’t show the precise speed of the car, and you can read more information about the difference between this reading and the one in navigation apps here.

And last but not least, the Cockpit displays the altitude and the cardinal directions right within the navigation app.

Sygic GPS Navigation
Photo: Sygic
The feature was developed from the very beginning to be as accurate as possible, so the first time you launch it, the app starts a calibration process. The vehicle must be stationary and parked on a level road to be able to calibrate all sensors precisely. Once the process comes to an end, you can start driving and get Cockpit readings on the screen.

Needless to say, this kind of data isn’t necessarily everybody’s cup of tea, and this could be the reason Google Maps isn’t exactly interested in providing users with information on this front. After all, importing the data from phone sensors is something that any developer should be able to do, but Sygic is the only one that thought this could come in handy to drivers out there.

Unfortunately, you won’t be able to use the Cockpit free of charge, as it’s part of the Premium+ subscription that comes with Sygic GPS Navigation. However, if you want to see what it’s all about, a trial is also offered to take the Cockpit for a spin.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
Bogdan Popa profile photo

Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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