Frequently Asked Questions
- Will Bad Elf GPS products work with a Wi-Fi only iPad or iPod touch or if my iPad/iPhone/iPod touch is not connected to the Internet?
Yes. None of the Bad Elf GPS require an internet connection (Wi-Fi or 3G) to work. That said, many apps that use your location may themselves require Internet access. The default Maps app, for example, tries to fetch map tiles from the Internet as you move off the map. That's why we keep a list of some of the apps that work great without requiring Internet access here.
- I have an iPad/iPhone with cellular that already has a GPS chip inside it. Why would I need a Bad Elf GPS product?
All iPhones and some iPads come equipped with access to the internet via the cellular phone data network. These units also include “A-GPS. The “A stands for “assisted, as in assisted by the cell towers. So if your iPhone/iPad (with cellular) has a connection to the cell towers, the assisted GPS inside your iPhone/iPad will work well enough for most activities. But away from the cell towers, up in the sky, out in the woods, or at sea, the GPS can take 20 minutes or more to locate you. Because Bad Elf GPS products rely only on the satellites orbiting the earth and never on cell towers, they can locate you quickly and accurately anywhere on the planet.
- Will Bad Elf GPS products work with Android devices or laptop computers?
With the 2.0.60 firmware release, the Bad Elf GPS Pro can feed location data to non-Apple devices over Bluetooth. You’ll still need an iPhone/iPad/iPod touch to be able to configure your Bad Elf GPS Pro, but once configured, it can feed location data to both Apple and non-Apple devices. You’ll also still need an iPhone/iPad/iPod touch to be able to download trips from your bad Elf GPS Pro.
- Do Bad Elf GPS products provide access to the Internet?
- Will Bad Elf GPS products work in my country?
Yes, Bad Elf GPS products have been proven worldwide!
- How accurate are Bad Elf GPS products?
Bad Elf GPS products are as precise as 2.5m (8ft), but as with any GPS receiver, this depends on your particular environment (interference, sky visibility, shielding, etc).
- Will Bad Elf GPS products work if my iPad/iPhone/iPod touch is in Airplane Mode?
Yes! Airplane mode will not affect the operation of the Bad Elf GPS. We recommend airplane mode whenever you don't need to make phone calls, send and receive text messages, or access the Internet. It saves power and minimizes distractions. The default Maps app will not work in "airplane mode," but most offline apps work just fine in "airplane mode". If you are using the Bad Elf GPS Pro, however, you will need to manually turn on Bluetooth after switching to "airplane mode" because “airplane mode turns off Bluetooth.
- Can I attach an external antenna to any Bad Elf GPS products?
No. But if you are trying to locate your plug-in Bad Elf GPS nearer to a clear view of the sky, you can use an extension cable. Many Bad Elf owners use this cable.
- What kind of warranty comes with a Bad Elf GPS product, and what is Bad Elf’s return policy?
You can read our warranty and return policy here.
- What does the LED on the plug-in Bad Elf GPS products indicate?
OFF: not in use SLOW BLINK: searching for satellite lock SOLID ON: lock acquired Keep in mind that if the Bad Elf GPS is plugged into your iOS device, but you are not running an app that requires location services, the LED will not be lit, and the Bad Elf GPS will not consume any power.
- Will Bad Elf GPS products work with the default Maps app or Google’s Maps app?
Kind of. Both of these apps need an Internet connection to download new map data any time you move or zoom the map. These apps do cache the current screen, so as long as your position does not move off the screen, it will work. Google’s Maps app allows you to cache maps before you leave Internet coverage. We recommend you save yourself the trouble and use one of the many mapping apps with offline support.
- Does Waze work well with Bad Elf GPS products?
Waze certainly can get location data from Bad Elf GPS, but unfortunately, Waze requires an Internet connection for the majority of its features. So unless you have a decent mobile Internet connection, we don’t recommend Waze for offline use.
- How can I tell if the app I want to use will work with Bad Elf GPS products?
We maintain a list of apps that we know work well with Bad Elf GPS Products. BUT THIS LIST IS BY NO MEANS EXHAUSTIVE. Most location-based apps in the app store will simply work with Bad Elf GPS products with no effort or configuration required. Feel free to contact the Bad Elf support team at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have app-related questions. They may know exactly why the app you are considering is not listed. Or perhaps they haven’t heard of it yet. Got an app you know works well with Bad Elf GPS products? Contact us and let us know so we can list it for other Bad Elf users.
- How can I use my iPad/iPhone/iPod touch for navigation in my airplane/boat/car?
It’s easy. All you need is the right app. Have a look at our list of recommended apps.
- Do I need to “jailbreak my iPad/iPhone/iPod touch to use Bad Elf GPS products?
Absolutely not. All Bad Elf products are certified by Apple and never require jailbreaking.
- Do I need to charge my Bad Elf GPS product?
Plug-in Bad Elf GPS products do not require charging. They draw their power from your iPhone/iPad/iPod touch. The Bad Elf GPS Pro has a long-lasting, rechargeable internal battery and comes with a USB charging cable.
- Can I charge my iPad/iPhone/iPod touch while the Bad Elf GPS is plugged into it?
Plug-in Bad Elf GPS products all ship with a USB charging cable so you can charge your iPhone/iPad/iPod touch with the Bad Elf GPS plugged in.
- How do Bad Elf GPS products affect the battery life of my iPad/iPhone/iPod touch?
GPS receivers are power-hungry devices, and running location-based apps continuously can drain your battery quickly. This is true of both the iPhone/iPad internal GPS chips and of external Bad Elf GPS products. Luckily, the iPad battery is HUGE in comparison, so battery drain is not as much of an issue. In our experience, a fully charged iPod touch can power the Bad Elf GPS for four hours or more. For an iPad, it’s 10 hours or more. Interestingly, screen brightness usually has a greater impact on battery life than the Bad Elf GPS.
- I have a 30-pin Bad Elf GPS. How can I use it with my newer iPad/iPhone/iPod touch with the Lightning connector?
Yes! You can read all about using the Bad Elf GPS and Bad Elf GPS Pro with the Lightning Connector here. Please note that countless customers have tried the non-Apple adapters, and they simply do not work with accessories like the Bad Elf GPS. Make sure you purchase an Apple adapter. You can learn more about the Bad Elf GPS made specially for Lightning connector here.
- How can I tell if my app is using the Bad Elf GPS versus the built-in GPS in my Apple device?
When you connect to any Bad Elf GPS product, it immediately starts feeding location data to your iPhone/iPad/iPod touch. Any app that needs location information will automatically be fed the more accurate location data, in most cases, the location data provided by the Bad Elf GPS. If you are intent on forcing your app to use only the Bad Elf GPS location data, you can turn on “airplane mode to disable the internal GPS chip. But keep in mind that this is entirely unnecessary. In general, you should just connect to the Bad Elf GPS and the rest is automatic.
- Is there an extension cable I can use for my plug-in Bad Elf GPS?
Many Bad Elf owners have found the cables from CableJive to work well, they make both 30-pin connector and Lightning versions.
- Will you ship to my home country?
Please read our note about international purchases.
- How much does shipping cost?
Of course, that varies by weight and destination. Bad Elf ships via US Mail, UPS, or FedEx usually from our primary warehouse in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The easiest way to get an accurate shipping quote is to simply begin a purchase and start checking out. You’ll be able to see the shipping costs before entering any credit card information.
- What about import duties and customs fees?
See our detailed notes about shipping times and customs fees.
- Can you tell me which retail stores near me sell Bad Elf products?
Since we sell primarily through distributors, we do not provide a list of individual retailers.
- What is the Bad Elf app used for?
The Bad Elf GPS app is useful to verify that your Bad Elf GPS product is functioning properly, to configure your Bad Elf product, and to apply any available firmware updates. If you have a Bad Elf GPS Pro, you can also use the app to download and share trips recorded with the Bad Elf GPS Pro.