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How can I import 100+ addresses to Garmin Mobile PC?
gogetter
Ken,
We do property inspections. A third party Company gives us orders each night Mon-Fri, I run my mouse over all the addresses/locations hi-lighting them, then I right click anywhere on the page and copy. Then I go and open up MS Excel 2003 open and paste to spread sheet. Then I edit any miss stakes on the addresses, save to Desktop, then exit, I then open MS S&T, go to data import, match addresses or skip if they don't match, then I click on the Legend drop down menu, hi-light pushpins, right click hi-lighted pushpin, then choose to make pushpins as stops, if I don't like the way it routes, I manually make changes. Next day we travel to each locations, inspect property. Hope this make things clearer.

Charlie
Ken in Regina
Hi Charlie,

What you described is about what I had guessed from your last note. I don't know if this will be welcome news or not, but your present approach is likely about as good as it gets.

I think I can give you a process that will make it approximately as easy to get your addresses geocoded in a batch directly from your spreadsheet as you do now after you import it to Streets&Trips. From there, I think I can give you a process that will let you get the addresses and locations into your Nuvi or Mobile PC just about as easily as you now get the spreadsheet into S&T. Instead of a pushpin group it will be grouped and searched as a "Category" of custom POIs (points of interest).

However, there doesn't seem to be any other product on the market that's as easy as Streets&Trips (and Mappoint) to select a single pushpin group and have a single route calculated to cover the entire group from start to finish.

As Terry and I have already mentioned, Mobile PC (and your Nuvi) will be able to optimize a route for you and will allow you to manually force a variety of changes to that route, similar to what you can do in Streets. But it's tedious to get all the points into the route in the first place. So far I have not found a way to select a group of locations all at once, like you can with pushpin groups in Streets. I tried it this morning and it's no big deal to include ten or a dozen in the route and then optimize it. But including eight or ten times that many is a whole different issue.

Regarding the improved routing you sometimes see with your Nuvi, Microsoft uses the same supplier for their map data as Garmin does. That's a company called Navteq. Marvin and Terry and I have experience with Microsoft's Streets&Trips and Mappoint maps plus Garmin's City Navigator North America and Metroguide Canada maps. There looks to be minimal, if any differences in the actual data between the Microsoft maps and the Garmin City Navigator product.

For Canadians, the Metroguide Canada maps are quite a different matter. The map data is assembled by a different company and in most cases they are better than the products based on Navteq's data for Canadian coverage.

If you are having better luck with the autorouting on your Nuvi (which I'm guessing has City Navigator North America on it?) then the main difference will be in how Garmin's routing routines treat the map data. I think that's more likely because we haven't generally seen major differences in the data. In every case where someone has raised a routing issue in Streets&Trips, one of us has checked the same thing in Garmin's maps out of curiousity .. sort of as a sanity check, if you will. We rarely, if ever find a difference when comparing the map data. But it is not unusual to find that Garmin's routing routine handles things better.

I need to ask another question so we can go back to fundamentals, as a reality check on whether it's worth your time to pursue changing to something like Mobile PC for its potentially better routing. Or even to try something with your Nuvi as a test to see if it buys you enough to buy Mobile PC.

If you are doing house inspections, are you really doing 100 per day? Even with a 10 hour day that's 10 per hour or six minutes per inspection. And that's not allowing for driving time, lunch or even pee breaks.

I ask, because if you really need to deal with getting autorouting for a single route on 100 addresses, or even something close to that, you're probably better to not even waste your time changing. You've got the best possible solution right now, in my opinion.

If, however, you doing 10 to 12 a day, or something in that range, the effort to include each individual location into a route in a Garmin product won't be such an issue. If we are dealing with numbers in that sort of range I can help you set up an experiment on your Nuvi to see whether you want to pursue it any further for Mobile PC on the laptop.

I'm okay either way. I just don't want to see you waste a bunch of your time to come up with a predictable (disappointing) result if you are dealing with very large numbers per day.

...ken...
tcassidy
I don't mean to be flippant but using a >$100 program in a time-critical application seems to me to be a mug's game. These programs really are designed for leisure and pushing them to be accurate for anything else is expecting a lot.

Terry
gogetter
Ken,

Not all the time my wife and I do a 100 per day. but our average has been 65 inspections per day. And yes we take lunch on the run and a quick pee break. But all we have do is take a picture of the front of the home and address number if it's not vacant, then we have check for water, lights and conditions of property. I would love nothing more that to save money. But I'm concern whether my nuvi 350 is new enough to do the job of routing. I havn't upgraded yet to the 2009 version, because I was waiting to see which way I needed to go. Once again, I value you guys opinions and help.
gogetter
So, what would you suggest for what I do?
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by gogetter
So, what would you suggest for what I do?
I'll be watching for an answer, too. I did some experimentation earlier this week for bulk locating and autorouting for a list of roughly forty addresses for a friend of mine who does snow removal. Frankly, I can't think of a better solution for what you're doing than Streets&Trips.

The only downside, and perhaps this is what Terry was referring to, is that Streets occasionally produces some odd routing behaviour when it encounters odd road situations. And that is something that should be easily tolerable in a product in this price range.

...ken...
tcassidy
I'd do exactly what you are doing and live with the occasionally wrong routing results and address errors. S&T can accept your destinations direct in the format you receive them. Something that is far more difficult for other programs to do.

Ken has pointed out that it is possible to massage the data you receive to test with your Nuvi but is it worth the effort to overcome an occasional routing discrepancy in S&T. I guess it depends on what you want to see or hear while you are navigating.

Don't sweat the small stuff unless there is a business program specifically designed for your needs.

Terry
gogetter
Well, I went out again today with MS S&T on a 32 inspection route, it did okay but was off the mark for several addresses big time. Not to mention that aggravating computer pronoucing Streets, Places, State Roads, US Hwys & Lanes wrong. Sent us in the opposite of the house number we needed on that street. When you're doing a number of these things as me and my partner do, it cuts into your time to get others done. Maybe I'm over detailed and a super perfectioness. But I really like for my tools to work right. I don't mind paying for the right tool to do the job right. For me it keeps stress down. I'm always searching for the tool to do the job better, it make life easier in my opinion. Our first Property is usually about 40 miles away from our home and we keep going farther away from there. So we need it to work really good for us, because we in unfamilar territory. As always thanks for your input. I know you and Ken and others are trying to help me.

Thanks,
Charlie
Marvin Hlavac
Charlie, are these relatively new developed areas you visit? Usually, the map data in Streets & Trips is very good, but it does happen that a new development is not mapped right the first time, and the errors usually get corrected the next year, or the year after.

I also tend to think that for the type of work you do, Streets and Trips may be the best tool. But at the same time I think experimenting with other software may be fun.
tcassidy
Unfortunately, the pronunciation issue is no better in Mobile PC as it uses the same engine. I only turn it on to get a laugh at the mispronunciations. I am sure this feature will improve but, right now, I rely on the screen.

Garmin products do a better job of routing than S&T in many cases but if the underlying information is wrong (the Navteq data), that won't assist you in navigating to an address.

If you are always working in new and unfamiliar territory, I would think a backup paper map would be a great idea. Looking at the area on a larger scale ahead of time may give a better feel as to how the layout of streets/ roads and addresses works.

Terry
gogetter
Marvin,

Most of the new developments are two to three years old. I had the same problem with S&T 2008 before I upgraded to 2009. I run into deadend streets with ditches, it does not recognize yet. And yes, I do understand that's it's probably the best one for now. But when we do a lot of these things it get pretty agravating when it don't go right.
gogetter
Quote:
Originally Posted by tcassidy
Unfortunately, the pronunciation issue is no better in Mobile PC as it uses the same engine. I only turn it on to get a laugh at the mispronunciations. I am sure this feature will improve but, right now, I rely on the screen.

Garmin products do a better job of routing than S&T in many cases but if the underlying information is wrong (the Navteq data), that won't assist you in navigating to an address.

If you are always working in new and unfamiliar territory, I would think a backup paper map would be a great idea. Looking at the area on a larger scale ahead of time may give a better feel as to how the layout of streets/ roads and addresses works.

Terry

Yep! I think you're right. but like Marvin says it will be nice to experiment on different software.
tcassidy
Now that I agree with!!

Terry
Marvin Hlavac
Two to three year old developments? In my experience it usually takes two two three years for new streets to for the first time appear in navigable maps, so you are actually lucky that some of these new streets are there at all.

Unfortunately, this is going to be a constant issue for you, no matter what program you try.

Printed maps are much more up-to-date, but of course they have fewer features in comparison to GPS software.

Garmin Mobile PC, the software-only version, is only US $60. Give it a try, see if the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. You may end up liking it.
gogetter
Quote:
Originally Posted by tcassidy
Now that I agree with!!

Terry
speaking of agreeing. Do you know how I can get the
latitude and longitude after I save a file to .CSV to be able to use Garmin POI Loader. When we don't have a lot of addresses, I can put those in my Garmin nuvi 350.
I hope you understand what I mean.

Charlie
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