Many current and ex-Symbian Nokia users out there will remember ViewRanger as the first and arguably the best Satellite Navigation Orienteering app out there. When it first released it was limited to on-device Ordnance Survey maps of Great Britain, but over the years has added equivalent maps for other parts of the world. Sadly when Symbian was discontinued ViewRanger created new apps for iOS and Android, but never Windows Phone. The reason for this was market share with Android holding majority of the smartphone and iOS securely in second place.
After attending the Nokia Press Conference, on Monday morning, at Mobile World Congress I headed over to the ViewRanger stand to meet some of the team for the first time after being a Symbian user and beta tested for many years. On arrival at the stand, one of the first things I did was tell Craig Wareham, Cofounder and CEO of Augmentra (the developers of ViewRanger) in 2006, about the release of the Nokia X family of open source Android phones and the ability to side load standard Android apps onto it. I then explained that Nokia have developed a desktop app to drag and drop Android apps into to verify their compatibility and receive guidance on what changes need to be made if not fully compatible. The main difference for apps on the Nokia X family is the replacement of Google APIs with Nokia APIs.
After I had attended the Nokia Developer Day I went back to speak with Craig again and was happy to hear that he had side loaded the ViewRanger app onto a Nokia X at the Nokia Developers stand. He advised that there is some work to do, but the chances are good that ViewRanger will be made compatible with Nokia X, X+ and XL devices.
My hope is that this will rekindle the relationship between Nokia and Augmentra and lead to the development of a Windows Phone ViewRanger app in future as the Windows Phone market share gradually increases across the world.
Thanks again to Craig and the Augmentra team for making this move back to the Nokia family.
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