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Maverick

Can I use iPhone(4) as a iPod/gaming device without service?

18 posts in this topic

Will the iPhone be able to operate as a iPod and gaming device without cellular/wireless service?  I am still interested in downloading apps and songs into the iPhone, but will it work without wireless service?

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Originally Posted by Maverick

Will the iPhone be able to operate as a iPod and gaming device without cellular/wireless service?  I am still interested in downloading apps and songs into the iPhone, but will it work without wireless service?

Yes and no.  You can certainly still use it to play music and games and such that are already on it.  However, I don't see how you could put anything new on there without an internet connection.  (Don't think you'd need wireless because you can download songs and apps on iTunes at your computer and then sync)

I gave my old iPhone (3S) to my kids as a toy when I got my new one.  The other day, just out of curiosity I plugged it in and charged it, and everything works just fine ... just no phone service obviously.

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I was thinking that you could still download apps/songs via the wi-fi in the house or wherever that has free wi-fi..no?

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Originally Posted by Maverick

I was thinking that you could still download apps/songs via the wi-fi in the house or wherever that has free wi-fi..no?

Yes, you can still download to the device using WiFi.  You do not need a data plan from your cellular provider to use WiFi.  As you're not using the CDMA/GSM radio.  Simply using the WiFi.  Two totally different RF modules.

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Oh sorry ... When you said without wireless I was thinking without wi-fi. Beach is right :)

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Originally Posted by Beachcomber

Yes, you can still download to the device using WiFi.  You do not need a data plan from your cellular provider to use WiFi.  As you're not using the CDMA/GSM radio.  Simply using the WiFi.  Two totally different RF modules.

Cool!  Verizon was offering me $130 for it as credit.  I was speaking another friend and he said NO WAY..and if I can still download songs/apps then that will be awesome.  I'd like to use it as a golf GPS, but that, I heard, requires cellular/wireless serivce..right?

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Yep.  If you want to use your phone as a GPS/distance measuring device... You're going to need a cellular plan.  I'm unaware of any golf course that offers a hotspot which blankets their course.

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Originally Posted by Beachcomber

Yep.  If you want to use your phone as a GPS/distance measuring device... You're going to need a cellular plan.

Why would you need data connection for GPS to work? I know with assisted GPS it would be quicker to get the fix, but other than that I do not know.

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Originally Posted by luu5

Why would you need data connection for GPS to work? I know with assisted GPS it would be quicker to get the fix, but other than that I do not know.

The dude is talking about using his phone.  Cellular/mobile phones support GPS or A-GPS.  Basically the phone has a gyro and accelerometer to get your local coordinates or position of your device... Those coordinates are then sent to a remote satellite where it then provides data back to your device telling you things like; how many yards you are from the pin, or how far you need to drive until you reach your destination.  But you need to use the Cellular (CDMA, LTE, etc.) or Wireless (WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n) network signal to transfer and update the data for A-GPS to work.

If you're playing golf - most likely there is no WiFi signal to connect to when you're out on the course.  Therefore, you'll need a cellular network to be able to connect and receive updates from the remote satellite for the GPS to work within a mobile phone.

I understand there are standalone GPS devices - which use satellite - but he is talking about a mobile phone.  So your missing the point altogether.  And you indeed need a Cellular network for the mobile phones GPS to work when WiFi is not accessible.

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Originally Posted by Beachcomber

The dude is talking about using his phone.  Cellular/mobile phones support GPS or A-GPS.  Basically the phone has a gyro and accelerometer to get your local coordinates or position of your device... Those coordinates are then sent to a remote satellite where it then provides data back to your device telling you things like; how many yards you are from the pin, or how far you need to drive until you reach your destination.  But you need to use the Cellular (CDMA, LTE, etc.) or Wireless (WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n) network signal to transfer and update the data for A-GPS to work.

If you're playing golf - most likely there is no WiFi signal to connect to when you're out on the course.  Therefore, you'll need a cellular network to be able to connect and receive updates from the remote satellite for the GPS to work within a mobile phone.

I understand there are standalone GPS devices - which use satellite - but he is talking about a mobile phone.  So your missing the point altogether.  And you indeed need a Cellular network for the mobile phones GPS to work when WiFi is not accessible.

There are so many things wrong in your post. I suggest you read some online documentation on this.

iPhone 4 has A-GPS which means it has its own GPS receiver. It also supports A (assisted) which will make it possible to get quicker fix and also fix in indoors by using basestation/AP locations. But A part is just an addition, it does not remove the normal satellite based GPS functionality. You do not need any cellular or wifi coverage with (A-)GPS equipped phone. Only thing you would be missing is the A part.

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The assisted gps tag has always given Apple grief. If you look on the Apple Support discussions, this is a huge point of confusion. You can use gps without a data plan or wifi, you can use turn by turn navigation or locate your position provided you have the map already loaded on your device, which is what many of the paid navigation apps allow you to do.

I have a Nexus 7 tablet - it has gps and wifi, no Edge, 2G, 3G, LTE, no data plan. When I set the directions while having wifi access and then go into the car and therefore have no wifi, no data of any kind, the gps turn by turn voice navigation works. However, if I go seriously off route, it has problems rerouting because it needs to get data but can't.

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Originally Posted by luu5

There are so many things wrong in your post. I suggest you read some online documentation on this.

iPhone 4 has A-GPS which means it has its own GPS receiver. It also supports A (assisted) which will make it possible to get quicker fix and also fix in indoors by using basestation/AP locations. But A part is just an addition, it does not remove the normal satellite based GPS functionality. You do not need any cellular or wifi coverage with (A-)GPS equipped phone. Only thing you would be missing is the A part.

And I'm unaware of any iPhone or Android golf based GPS app, that will operate without a network.  And when you're on the golf course - what course do you know of that has bases stations and access points setup for the phone to sync with? I'd say zero in my area that are open and not encrypted (courses that have GPS for golf carts may have access points on the course).

So back to the original point.... The iPhone (and most other mobile handsets) are using Qualcomm's Gobi modem(s) (http://www.qualcomm.com/chipsets/gobi).  They do indeed support GPS.  And yes, the phone with the Gobi modem integrated can indeed support GPS without a cellular network or WiFi.  But you would need the proper API and infrastructure to support the GPS function.  The OP is not going to have this all this at his finger tips, I can assure you.

Originally Posted by nevets88

The assisted gps tag has always given Apple grief. If you look on the Apple Support discussions, this is a huge point of confusion. You can use gps without a data plan or wifi, you can use turn by turn navigation or locate your position provided you have the map already loaded on your device, which is what many of the paid navigation apps allow you to do.

I have a Nexus 7 tablet - it has gps and wifi, no Edge, 2G, 3G, LTE, no data plan. When I set the directions while having wifi access and then go into the car and therefore have no wifi, no data of any kind, the gps turn by turn voice navigation works. However, if I go seriously off route, it has problems rerouting because it needs to get data but can't.

Everything you are describing is simply caching the maps to your phones memory (by using a WiFi or Cellular Network connection to download them) and then turning off the radio.  GPS will work, but it is extremely limited and as I said to luu5, what golf app allows you to have all your maps pre-installed?  I'm unaware of any.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachcomber View Post

So back to the original point.... The iPhone (and most other mobile handsets) are using Qualcomm's Gobi modem(s) (http://www.qualcomm.com/chipsets/gobi).  They do indeed support GPS.  And yes, the phone with the Gobi modem integrated can indeed support GPS without a cellular network or WiFi.  But you would need the proper API and infrastructure to support the GPS function.  The OP is not going to have this all this at his finger tips, I can assure you.

You may be right in that there are no available apps that would have built in maps/layouts for golf. But if you had such app then you would not need any connections as it would work like any golf GPS unit.

But that was not my point, which was pointed at this GPS mumbo jumbo:

Quote:
Cellular/mobile phones support GPS or A-GPS.  Basically the phone has a gyro and accelerometer to get your local coordinates or position of your device... Those coordinates are then sent to a remote satellite where it then provides data back to your device telling you things like; how many yards you are from the pin, or how far you need to drive until you reach your destination.  But you need to use the Cellular (CDMA, LTE, etc.) or Wireless (WiFi 802.11a/b/g/n) network signal to transfer and update the data for A-GPS to work.

The phone does not send anything to satellite, it only receives data from GPS satellites. It can use gyros to provide positioning after getting fix by other means (like GPS), but it will get lost at some point. And you are talking about A-GPS like it would not work without connection. The A part would not work, but the GPS would, and to the end-user standing on open golf course the difference (between GPS and A-GPS) would be minimal if at all noticeable.

I guess our points flew by each other.

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Originally Posted by Beachcomber

Everything you are describing is simply caching the maps to your phones memory (by using a WiFi or Cellular Network connection to download them) and then turning off the radio.  GPS will work, but it is extremely limited and as I said to luu5, what golf app allows you to have all your maps pre-installed?  I'm unaware of any.

Why would you say "it is extremely limited"? I have all of Finland, France and UK road maps loaded on my phone and I have used it as a navigator while driving without A- part of the A-GPS just fine. No limitations, except of course real time information.

If you are talking just about golf apps then I understand. But this is not clear from your text.

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Originally Posted by Beachcomber

And I'm unaware of any iPhone or Android golf based GPS app, that will operate without a network.  And when you're on the golf course - what course do you know of that has bases stations and access points setup for the phone to sync with? I'd say zero in my area that are open and not encrypted (courses that have GPS for golf carts may have access points on the course).

........

Everything you are describing is simply caching the maps to your phones memory (by using a WiFi or Cellular Network connection to download them) and then turning off the radio.  GPS will work, but it is extremely limited and as I said to luu5, what golf app allows you to have all your maps pre-installed?  I'm unaware of any.

The GPS will not be limited. It's a full-on GPS. You're talking about a limitation of the apps to not download and store the courses.

If you could download the full course at your house where you have WiFi, a smart phone without a data plan that has a full GPS signal would function perfectly well and not in an "extremely limited" capacity.

It's just GPS. The app isn't doing something special. How do you think the Callaway uPro works? It just happens to download and save the entire map to the device. No reason an app couldn't be designed to do that.

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I'm happy that you can tour your home country and not get lost without a cellular network... But can you please go back and read this?  Thanks.

Originally Posted by Maverick

I'd like to use it as a golf GPS, but that, I heard, requires cellular/wireless serivce..right?

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I'm happy that you can tour your home country and not get lost without a cellular network... But can you please go back and read this?  Thanks.

As you see below I did read it already:

Originally Posted by luu5

If you are talking just about golf apps then I understand. But this is not clear from your text.

I hope you learned how (A-)GPS really works.

You are welcome.

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Going back to the OP's question - I used an iPod Touch up till 2009 (battery died on me) and noticed some apps, some games, do some kind of lookup or accesses the internet behind the scenes, especially on startup. Depending on how well the app was written, some apps just wouldn't run until it had internet access. Now apps handle this much better and I doubt you'll run into this but, be prepared for the oft chance that an app won't start or work properly without accessing the internets. Many of these apps just assume you'll have it. One way to test is to use all your apps in Airplane Mode and see what happens.

And also Game Center requires the internet. Many games work with Game Center, so it can be annoying to toggle through all the popups.

This issue I am familiar with as an iPod Touch user, even though I use an iPhone. People take for granted having the internet available all the time. When you don't, it is not trivial to adjust your workflow but it can be done. One thing you always consider w/respect to apps is how they handle offline conditions. This is why Instapaper is one of my favorite apps.

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