Using Your Smart Phone or Tablet GPS System, to Geotag Your Nikon Images

Some time ago I did a Blog about geotagging images with a GPS device external to the camera. That Blog was based on using the GPS system from my motor vehicle, however I have now refined this system somewhat. Being an Electronic and Telecommunication Engineer, I love using technology to help facilitate my photography.

My refined system is to use one of the new Android tablets, namely the Nexus 9, however this system can essentially be used with any tablet or smaller smart phone which has a built in GPS, using either Android or iOS,  What I describe below will be based on the Android technology but I believe iOS can do exactly the same thing.

With the Android system  there is an App called My Tracks, if it is not on your tablet or phone it can be downloaded free from the Google Play Store. This App once activated in the record mode will record all your travels and has the functionality to show your tracks on Google Maps. In addition to showing your tracks it has functionality to export your track information.

Once you have saved your track in the My Track App you can go through the following sequence.

  • Select Export To.
  • Then select Export To…. External Storage.
  • Select GPX (.gpx), this is the file extension which will be exported from My Tracks.
  • Select Gmail
  • Nominate the Email address it is to be sent to.
  • There are also other alternatives such as sending the .gpx file to your Google Drive.
Once you have access to the .gpx file open up Nikon ViewNX, this is free software (not very much is free these days) and I used it on a regular basis for previewing all my images.
When you are using ViewNX, at the bottom of the ViewNX screen, with the image viewer selected, you can select all of the image files that you wish to have the GPS coordinates applied to.

After you have loaded Nikon ViewNX, across the top of the screen there are various selections. Selact Log Matching. In Log Matching you will see all the image files selected and then paste the .gpx file into the required section and then save. All the images selected will then have the GPS coordinates embedded into the image files.

As a word of caution it is essential that the clocks in both the smart phone or tablet and the camera are synchronised for this procedure to work. What the Nikon ViewNX software does, is to get the GPS coordinates at the time at which the image was captured and then place the coordinates in the image file.

The equipment I use for my photography is mainly as follows: