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Tap That App
Must-have apps for your next road tripFrom navigation to restaurant recommendations, these apps will help make your next road trip both fun and stress-free.
What's up everybody, I'm Antuan Goodwin welcoming you to Tap That App! --the show where we cover the hottest apps for your smartphone. It's the end of Summer and more than a few of you are going to be trying to squeeze in that last minute road trip before things start to cool down. I know I am. Or maybe it's time to plan a relaxing Fall road trip for to watch the trees change color. With that in mind, I've gathered up a few of my favorite Android apps to make your next road trip more interesting. The most obvious solution for navigation on an Android 2.1+ phone is Google Maps with navigation. This free app will point you in the right direction for the low, low price of free-99. However, because all of your maps are stored in the cloud, you could find yourself stuck without a map should your road trip take you too far off of the grid. If you don't want to be bothered babysitting your data connection, you'll need an app that stores its maps locally. I like Sygic GPS navigator because its interface is intuitive, its maps are provided by TeleAtlas--which also provides maps for the likes of TomTom--and it's got a seven- day free trial period which should be enough time to get your first roadtrip under your belt before you decide whether you like it enough to spend the 15 euro (or about 22 bucks) for a one-year subscription to the North American maps license. If the idea of paying a yearly subscription rubs you the wrong way, you can also check out Navigon Mobile Navigator or CoPilot Live which both cost more up front, but are also both one-time purchases. Sygic, CoPilot, and Navigon all have traffic data services built into them, but this usually costs extra and we're already spending too much money on this darn trip, so were going to suggest a third party traffic app for planning your day's drive. Inrix Traffic is the perfect app for traffic geeks, offering live traffic data and predictive traffic for both where you are and where you're going to be. Want to know what traffic will look like when you arrive in San Diego tonight? Turn the app's clock forward to see predictive incident and flow data for anywhere you please. Along the way, you can use Vlingo Voice with InCar to stay amused with random trivia about things you spot along the road. And at some point, you'll probably want to grab some grub and maybe finds something fun to do, so I'd recommend you check out the Yelp app to search user generated reviews of local venues to find the best bites around. With your belly full, you'll want to make sure you keep your car's tank full without breaking the bank. So, check out Gas Buddy to search for the cheapest fuel around. That's just the tip of the iceberg for apps that you can tap to make your next road trip more fun and easy. If you've got suggestions for an app you'd like to see tapped, send them to TapThatApp@cnet.com. I've been Antuan Goodwin and, if you'll excuse me, the open road is a'calling.