Mapping your multi-destination routes just became easier. Route Planner 8, now in the Windows Store worldwide, joins our Windows Phone App to provide a cross-device mapping and planning tool. Plan your route on a desktop or tablet and then view, map, and track on your Windows Phone.
The Windows 8 app, Route Planner 8, can be found at: apps.microsoft.com/webpdp/app/route-planner-8.
The Windows Phone app, Walk-Run-Bike-Drive, can be found at: www.windowsphone.com
Whether you have multiple recurring routes, several appointments to hit in a day, need to keep records on your outdoor activities, some new real estate properties to inspect, need to make deliveries to several locations, need to pick up from multiple addresses, or, in my wife’s case have 15 yard sales to hit in one morning, you need the help of Route Planner 8 and to help you choose the best route and keep a record of your travels.
Waypoints are destinations, stops, appointments, or points-of-interest. Plan your route by entering a few waypoints. If desired, use the “Optimize” feature to automatically reorder your waypoints based on shortest distance.
When departing, keep a record of your actual route taken by turning on “Tracking”. Your GPS position is recorded and a line drawn on the map showing your progress. Not surprisingly, this is called your “track”. Along the way, enter notes for any waypoint. When complete, or at any time, you can share your route and track in several ways: Send a link that shows a Google Map with your waypoints; Send a GPX file (GPS Exchange Format) with waypoints and track; or save your route to SkyDrive for sharing.
Download and take a look for free. When you see how Route Planner 8 will help you, purchase the “Save” feature which lets you store any number of your own routes. Tracking your movements using your devices GPS and storing a “bread crumb” trail is a second feature you may elect to buy.
The “home” screen as shown at the beginning, displays all of your stored routes and tracks. Scroll horizontally to view a thumb nail view of all your favorites. Tap a route to zoom-in and view all the “stops” or waypoints.
An interactive map plots all the waypoints for your route. Next to the map is a scrolling list of each waypoint along with a thumbnail aerial image for context and help finding that specific spot. Using the map controls, switch between road, aerial, and birds-eye view. And, of course, zoom the map in or out for more detail or landmark spotting.
Want to see where you’ve been? Turn on “Tracking” to record your GPS position as you drive. If you’ve already tracked your movement on the route, a line is drawn on the map showing your previous track.
In addition to plotting your waypoints, your previous tracking, if any, is drawn. From this display, you can add and delete waypoints as well as rearrange their order.
Zoom in on a waypoint by tapping it. Alter the address, name, or add notes for that waypoint.
One of the more powerful and less touted features of Windows 8 is the Search Charm. Apps, such as Route Planner 8 which make use of this integration, give you a fast and easily accessible query into the app’s data. At any time, you may pop up the Search Charm and for example, find out if you have ever been to “3110 North Ridge”.
Likewise, the Share Charm gives you a fast way to share your route or current location. Choose the Windows 8 Share Charm or select “Share Location” from Route Planner 8’s app menu bar. You are presented with a choice of apps with which to share your route or location. For example, you can easily email a link to a Bing Map that shows your current location.
As a pleasant reminder, the App’s Windows 8 Live tile shows your recently used routes. Thumbnail maps with push-pin show the last few routes you used. And, you may add additional secondary tiles for your frequently access routes.