Routebuddy 3.2 — Now a Contender for Best in Class

As promised Routebuddy — who produce the mapping software for Mac OS (and now also Windows) — have released major update before Christmas. Routebuddy 3.2. adds a number of very useful functions to the route tools which now renders my review of Routebuddy 3 as obselete!

Update 3.1 added missing height data to OS top maps with a promise tat the height feature would soon be added to all top maps worldwide. When I updated my review to deal with 3.1 I made it clear that the route tools were still too clunky and still rendered multi day route creation difficult. However, on first inspection RB 3.2 seems to have dealt with all of my problems.

Routes on Routebuddy

Routes in Routebuddy can now be ‘continued’ and split. Two routes can be joined together. It is now also easy to insert a new waypoint into a route and to change the position of a selected waypoint.

It looks as if most of the new features I was looking for are here — certainly all the features I need are now present.

I can see that there might be some features that I might like to see implemented differently but this is probably splitting hairs. Over this week I will plan a multi day walk with RB 3 and then use this as the basis for a new and comprehensive view of the software. As of now Routebuddy seems to be at least as useful as its competitors. It will take me a few days to properly get to grips with it as there are so many new features. At this point I should also point oHere is a complete list of the new features. I’ve not played with all of them but judging from their titles some of theme look to be very useful for hikers and long distance trekkers.

Here is the full list of improvements:

 

Route Editing – Ten new features


Continue Route from Start
Continue Route from End
Join Route
Split Route
Undo Route
Draw Route Direction
Create Route via Menu
Smoothed Route Segments
Route Colour to Opaque
Newly created Routes named by Type

Track Editing – Eight new features


Join Tracks
Split Track by Days
Split Track by Segments
Draw Track Direction
Duplicate Track with Right Click
Duplicate track to Place file by using Alt key
Sort Track by Start Time
Join Tracks without Timestamps by Selection Order to control Join Order

Data Management – Ten new features


Remove Items from Place via Contextual Menu
Remove Items from Library via Contextual Menu
Undo/Redo for Waypoints
Undo/Redo for Routes
Undo/Redo for Tracks
Undo/Redo for Devices
Undo/Redo for Places
Undo of Moved Items
Delete Single Item on Right-Click
Multiple Item Deletion from Browser

Data Reporting – Three new features


Altitude Display
Middle points now appear as RP with unique number reference
Newly created Features named by type

Application


Software update menu re-sited

GPS support – Twenty-nine devices added


Support has been extended for a greater range of auto-recognised GPS Devices from Garmin and TomTom:
Twenty-two extra GPS devices from Garmin
Seven extra GPS devices from TomTom

These devices will now auto-connect via USB and be recognised by RouteBuddy with a confirmation image, device details, and offer a range of options for two-way exchange of GeoData.

Improved GPS support for the following existing devices:
Garmin eTrex Legend
Garmin eTrex Vista HCx
Detection of device timeouts

Comments

  1. Hmm. Sounds as if the damp arrival of 3.0 might be in a drying out phase. I do wish they’d show what’s so great about it, rather than just tell us it’s great, however (Maybe they could commission you to write a use-case or two, or a screen cast!)

    The list of ‘data management’ improvements is hard to fathom. Looks like we still cannot do bulk editing of waypoints for a route, or the contents of a place folder, which has always seemed to me to make the management of the locations folder a tough proposition.

    I do hope the ability to insert waypoints into routes is not the one currently in the manual on their website…that’d still be a deal-breaker for me.

    • Ian, the route editing is much better and editing waypoints in routes. It does more or less everything I want it to. More a less a new program with these new route commands.

  2. Ian,

    Thanks for thinking about looking at RouteBuddy again.

    In response to your comment about Version 3.0 I think there are some noteworthy points to make and, forgive me for banging my drum again, I have explored them below. You are right that use-cases (though there would be very many) and screencasts, would be helpful, but with so much on we haven’t got there yet; Even as I write we are in the process of working on the next version, RouteBuddy 3.3, and there are only so many hands! :)

    Look at it this way: For you 3.0 was a damp arrival, but that’s so far from reality. The launch of RouteBuddy 3.0 was the culmination of a massive undertaking on our part to launch comparable cross-platform map software on three versions of Mac OS X, and three versions of Windows, something that (worldwide) has never ever been done before. (And, may I say, rarely for non-map software too.)

    What does that add up to?
    - Every time we finish testing a build a “button” gets pressed and out comes RouteBuddy cross-platform software, software that looks and acts the same, not only on Windows and Mac OS X, but also on six different versions of the two OSes. That is very powerful, for us, and for our customers…

    Everyone else in this specialised digital map business builds a port (if they can be bothered to do so for the smaller Mac community) and in-each-and-every-case they truly suck. What’s more they’ve been built to just make money out of selling maps, ergo “Anquet’s SALE SALE SALE” for maps that are way out of date (C.2007 I would guess) and used in their “fast” software – software that is so slow that watching paint dry would be a blessed change. Sure RouteBuddy Ltd is also a business, and wants to sell maps too, but the difference between us and all others is the passion we not only have for what we do, but the dedication we have for doing it in the best possible way and, let’s face it, doing each little job along the way properly will take longer and, like chess, may mean we have to move some elements around to reach each objective. But get there we always will.

    Five releases in five months from June this year is not “not bad”, actually, in map software terms, it’s absolutely REVOLUTIONARY, especially when compared to the last ‘real releases’ from our competitors Anquet (C. 2006) and Memory-Map (C. 2005). And believe me, RouteBuddy have only just got started…

    There may be smaller elements you, or others, feel that aren’t there yet but, frankly speaking, that’s mere detail. It’s all coming, but there’s no way in this world that we going to throw this software together like others have done; So, when we add more features we’ll do it logically, and build them in to work in the most technically advantageous way with-the-rest-of-the-software-core.

    Prudent development of RouteBuddy for desktop and mobile, and on solid foundations, will bring superior features and elements for our customers and will give you, the user, clear advantages.

    Ian, if something needs explaining then simply just write to us at support@routebuddy.com and we’ll give you the answer, and/or point to the section in our manual. Then we can work to deliver what you want, rather than hoping we pick up on an odd comment here or there.

    Hopefully RouteBuddy will be what you want when you are ready. :)

    Best,

    Neil
    - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – -
    CEO RouteBuddy Ltd
    http://www.routebuddy.com

  3. Neil, Neil, still playing the same ‘old song’ :). To expand your customers scene, we still need EU topo maps!! I just don’t get it, what is the problem to offer these maps? What can I do with a ‘State of the Art” app without maps?? So no RB for me until you offer more EU maps.

    • Fred, although I have no conenction with Routebuddy I can offer something of an insight.

      I believe — now the main engine has been established — it is the intention to start preparing a range fo European Top Maps.

      Neil told me, in the summer, that height would be along soon and it was. I then complained about routes and suggested the route tool be re-written. And now it has.

      From what I have seen so far I tend to believe what they say to me. This is unlike some other companies who seem never to update their software.

      I’ve made clear my preferences — French and Spanish Topo maps. Perhaps you should throw in your suggestions!

      I’m sure Neil will be reading this!

  4. @Andy, thanks for your reply. Yes, I already wrote my requests for EU Topo maps at RB-forum last year Nov-Dec 2010 I guess. And I’m sure Neil has noticed my message… Again, we will wait and see. Did you copy this Neil? :)

  5. Copied and reading you fives Fred. :)

    Of course we want to offer more maps but, as always, it’s a balance.
    - I think that if I was able to show you our software version build list for 2012/13, and the many many items not in other software (and if the EU maps weren’t so key to you) then you’d wonder what indeed does come first! (There are lots of demands on us software-wise too… even Andy’s already come up with more good suggestions!)

    Other customers want more maps, but which countries first? France is likely a given but we’d love to hear via support which are the most popular to our customers. For example we get asked for Iceland a lot, but who would have thought it?!

    So if we can get feedback via our logging system on support then we’ll listen and act on that.

    As far as RouteBuddy is concerned we are working on Version 3.3 now, followed by 3.4 – which is a substantial release. Look forward to both of those, they’re cool.

    Thanks for your feedback.

    ~ neil
    - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – -
    CEO RouteBuddy Ltd

  6. Hi. I was wondering if you’d tried printing out maps for use. I can’t seem to find a way to print a usefully sized and scaled map.

  7. ps – to me mapping software that can’t print out a route on a scale map is a bit pointless.

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