By Seth Kingsley
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Voted best navigational app of 2008 by my mom!
Beacon will point you back to wherever you drop a beacon. Made after losing my car in a parking lot for the 800th time.
When you park, load up Beacon and hit the giant "DROP BEACON" button. Then, when you want to find your car again, just load Beacon again and follow the arrow straight to your car. Couldn't be any easier!
Beacon will automatically adjust to your direction of travel, so the arrow will always point exactly where you need to go. BUT---it will only do so once the GPS accuracy is good. This may take a few minutes! Wait until the accuracy is less than 50 metres.
Please note that I have absolutely no control over the accuracy of the GPS receiver. That is handled 100% by the phone itself. If you find the accuracy is poor, leave it be for a minute and it'll get better and better. If you find it's too inaccurate, get a bigger car. It's a cell phone, with like eight antennas!
Soon you'll be able to switch between metric and American units. For now, just use the fact that 1 metre = 1 yard (3 feet).
What makes Beacon different from other find-my-car apps:
• Beacon is free
• No need to wait for Google Maps to load, or an animated boot sequence. Designed to be useful when it's -50 out (you're adorable, Canada)
• Flashy graphics make you look cool
• Valid medical cure for acne(*)
(*) Not a valid medical cure for acne
What's New in Version 3.1
New icon, supplied by Andreas, Man Of Mystery.
Needs better instructions
App works the way it is supposed to, but inherent inaccuracies of the GPS receiver make it marginally useful for the stated purpose. 1. RELATIVE TO THE COMPASS ROSE the needle points to the beacon, PROVIDED THAT Accuracy < Distance. If Accuracy > Distance then the needle is pointing in a random direction. (Enhancement request: blank out arrow in the latter case.) 2. IF YOU WALK FORWARD IN A STRAIGHT LINE, with the iPhone held in front of you in the normal way, the compass rose will swing to line up "N" with actual North, more or less. In this case, BUT ONLY IN THIS CASE, the needle will be pointing toward the beacon relative to the way you are facing (i.e., straight up means continue in the same direction, etc.)
It Works; Needs to be Improved for 3GS
We tried it out. It does indeed work when you are moving so it can tell which way it's pointing. But it updates the direction very slowly as you walk so if you are making turns in close order you may not be sure which way to go. That may be the best they can do with pre-3GS iPhones but for 3GS phones they could, and should, take their directions from the built-in compas so they can update the direction much faster. If they do that I'll probably give it five stars.
A Pretty Useful App Simplicity At It's Best
I've held off judgement until I used Beacon a couple of times. I like it. Simplicity - the joy of finding my car at the airport after a long business trip - hey I am tired and want to go home - NOW. Yeah it loads a bit slow and it doesn't update real well -yet. I find that by exiting the app and starting it up a short moment later, it updates fairly well. Lead me right to my car last night without any problem. Tweak it some - but keep it simple - and you'll have 5 star app. Good job.
- Category: Navigation
- Updated: Jan 06, 2009
- Version: 3.1
- Size: 0.4 MB
- Language: English
- Seller: Seth Kingsley
- © 2008 Adam Weinberger
Compatibility: Requires iOS 2.2 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.