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Waypoint Averaging on Androids for Geocaching

Smartphones have become an increasingly common geocaching tool over the last 10 years…to the point where they are almost accepted by the hardcore, original geocachers! What hasn’t yet improved is the ability of cachers to mark a decent waypoint with a smartphone. Phone GPS systems have improved dramatically over the years and whilst they are not yet on par with dedicated GPS units, they are catching up. Those pesky reviewers and, in fact, most geocachers are keen to see your cache have a quality set of coordinates. To satisfy these guys you’re going to need to do a little Waypoint Averaging.

What is waypoint averaging? Essentially it is taking a number of GPS readings from a location and then averaging the samples. This produces a set of coordinates that is likely to be more accurate than a single reading.

Okay, before those with maths phobias run for the hills…you don’t need to do any maths! Of course, if you like maths you can do this the ol’manual way. But for those like me here are a few options I personally like for obtaining those averaged waypoints at a simple press of a button…

 

 

 

5 comments

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  1. Thorsten

    Hi,

    on iOS I created a tool for averaging coordinates called “GPS Averaging”. In this app you can also record a set of GPS readings and it average them automatically. Additionally you can repeat the recording for already measured waypoints to get also a average of several measures (like if you record on two different days).

    Best,
    Thorsten

  2. Dane Morgan

    Except, of course, that my Galaxy S3 with its GLONASS chipset is just as reliable and accurate as my Magellan. Averaging a few waypoint readings can be just as valuable for a dedicated GPSr as for a smart phone.

    Also, people need to get it out of this heads that there is an pixie dust in their device. Ten meters. That’s the number. When you get within ten meters put the toy away and use your noodle.

  3. TEAM 360

    Until they make a cellphone battery that can last a whole lot longer, I’ll continue to use a dedicated GPS unit.

  4. Rey del Roble

    Averaging takes the good, the bad and the ugly….why do you think that would be better? It’s not-never that accurate. You can do it the old manual way. Walk away and see how accurate your reading is. Then do it again and again until you get the correct reading. 3 or 4 times does it on a good GPS. Use the proper tool for the job.

  5. andrew

    I’ve found a dedicated GPSr more reliable, especially with cover, however as mentioned above, if you’re within 10 metres, put it in your pocket, maybe the CO was using a phone or the satellites may not have been in good positions.

    Sure half the fun is getting to the right area with your device, the other half though, is playing hide and seek and finding it.

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