Topo GPS – What is it anyway?

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Anyone who loves fields and forests, likes to spend time outside and go exploring, has certainly already had experience with GPS. GPS on the smartphone offers the opportunity to explore unknown areas on your own, with the smartphone guiding the way. With the help of topographic maps you can follow ready-made tours or spontaneously take your own route, without any additional help or compass.

GPS app for outdoor activities

The cell phone app Topo GPS has been available for several years, the company is based in the Netherlands, the app is still relatively unknown in Germany. Numerous, detailed maps of many European countries can be found within the app . These maps are not just limited to footpaths, but also offer navigation over traffic roads. The Topo GPS app is available for iOS and Android and can therefore be used on any standard smartphone.

Use like a GPS device

With the help of the Topo GPS app you can move around like with a GPS device ; the selected tour or route can be followed on the display. To save data volume, the desired routes are also available as downloads; they can then be used without an active internet connection. Complete maps or regions cannot be used offline due to the size of the images. People who need detailed maps therefore rely on a stable connection to the Internet during use .

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The GPS system in the phone detects the user’s current position on the map and guides them through the selected routes with high accuracy .

The Topo GPS app is perfectly tailored to outdoor use, it is suitable for many different groups of people, for example it can be used for hiking, cycling, mountain biking, horse riding or geocaching . Topo GPS contains all the functions that are also available with a normal GPS device . The difference is that no separate device is required. The user therefore has a cell phone and GPS device in combination for less money .

Use as an athlete

For bike trips, the Topo GPS app provides a special layer purely for this purpose. Mountain bikers get their money’s worth on the specially offered mountain bike routes ; each map displayed here is tailored to the chosen activity.

In addition, topographic maps are often used for geocaching, a digital scavenger hunt. Coordinates can be easily entered or scanned; the smartphone then shows the best route on the map and directs you directly to the cache.

The detailed topographic maps from Topo GPS are being used by more and more mountaineers. The drawn rock information and contour lines support tour planning and implementation.

Other possible uses

Conservationists have the opportunity to use Topo GPS to mark important waypoints in nature . These waypoints can be supplemented with further details, information and images. Digital cataloging is used to count birds and flowers; even rare plants can be documented and can be found again at any time using the coordinates and waypoints.

Data storage on microSD card

The GPS app data can be automatically stored on the device’s SD card. Depending on the device, a one-time setting may be necessary; the app can also be used on a tablet .

Use of stored data

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The route points saved on the SD card can then be played as GPX files on a PC.

With the right software, the recording of the saved GPX files can be processed on the PC, which supports the planning and optimization of future ventures.

Using the data collected with Topo GPS, the map can be visualized on the PC, meaning the route can be viewed on a larger screen.

The Topo GPS app can also be used on a Windows PC ; an Android emulator is required for this.

Functions with Topo-GPS app

Topo GPS offers users various features within the maps that can be used and saved as needed.


Waypoints can be supplemented with information and images; the material is then linked to the points within the routes .

Routing Tool

Tracking set routes is very easy with Topo GPS ; routes can be imported, planned or recorded. This means they can be shared with other Topo GPS users . The GPS system determines the person’s current position and uses this to guide them through the selected routes.

GPS functions

Topo GPS has all the functions of a normal GPS device , meaning the user saves the purchase costs for a complete GPS device. The position is determined just as precisely and reliably as with a GPS tracker.

Topographical Maps

The app offers detailed and official topographic maps of many countries ; each required country map can be purchased individually.


Waypoints can be easily placed on the map via the mobile phone display, and any description can be added.

Different layers

In addition , optional levels can be purchased in the Topo-GPS app , for example pure routes for mountain bikers or hikers .

Routing function

Routing means calculating a chosen route, the user searches for a specific location and Topo GPS determines the route on the map and the time required. This supports planning or spontaneous changes within the route. Topo GPS thus offers flexibility within the selected route and guides the user to the desired destination via a map.

Advantages of use

If you want to buy a GPS device, you can use this app to first test whether the purchase is worth it for your own purposes. Topo GPS offers the user all the functions of a normal GPS device, but saves money in the long term because no new hardware is required.

Cost and compatibility

Topo GPS is available for iOS and Android and can be easily installed on devices with these operating systems. Anyone who uses the iPhone benefits from connecting their Apple devices; saved routes, coordinates and waypoints can be shared via iCloud so that all devices, iPad, iPhone or Applewatch , are on the same page.

The app can be purchased in the Playstore for a one-time fee of five euros, additional maps of different countries must be purchased individually, each map costs around four euros and can be purchased as an in-app purchase. The thematic layers of the maps, for example maps for bicycle tours, mountain bikers or hikes, cost around three euros each. Future updates are included in the price and will be made available shortly after availability.

Conclusion Topo GPS

In order to fully use the app on your phone, certain requirements must be met. Optimal guidance through the route is only possible with a good connection to the internet . The offline maps can also be used, but they overload the phone. If there is good mobile phone reception , the user’s current position can be easily determined, which ensures optimal guidance through the selected route. A connection to the Internet is necessary for additional features, such as online searches for locations or routes and for routing .

People who are thinking about buying a GPS device, for example from Garmin, can first try out Topo GPS to see whether they can handle it. For most people, using an iPad or iPhone is often completely sufficient for cycling or hiking .

In addition, the routes within the app can be used to navigate by car. The app thus replaces the common GPS transmitters and offers the user all important information with intuitive operation .

Topo GPS turns iPhone and iPad into a fully functional navigation device , with the option to add your own route points to the map.

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