Is it for me?
- Background mode
- Automatic mode
- Formatting & display
- File storage
These help pages are common for both the free and Pro versions of the app. The free version displays ads in the settings and files section, but not on the main screen (used while driving). The paid version doesn't display ads (or include the ad libraries), but otherwise is identical to the free version.
DailyRoads Voyager is an Android app, allowing for continuous video recording from vehicles. Essentially, the application acts as a video black box, dashcam or auto DVR, recording everything, but only keeping what the user is really interested in. The user is usually the driver of a car, who can now quickly and safely capture video sequences of important road events.
Typically, on an average journey of a few hours, only a handful of video files (5-10 minutes) are worth keeping. Nevertheless, the application records and saves everything that happens in front of the camera, while running a cleanup process in the background, so the storage space doesn't fill up. Older and unimportant video files are constantly deleted, while important events (triggered by the accelerometer, or manually) are stored away for later viewing. Additionally, photos can also be automatically captured at specific intervals.
Video and photo files are timestamped, geotagged, and even uploaded according to the user's pre-set options. Speed, elevation and GPS coordinates are saved each second, and can be shown on the videos. Reverse geocoding can be also performed automatically or manually on photos/videos. Then, the accumulated files can be easily managed, played back, and grouped in selections.
Is it for me?
On the main screen of the application, the Video and Photo buttons allow you to start and stop the sequence of recording videos and capturing photos. The Camera mode button allows for a quick change between various modes defined in the settings. The microphone image is used to start a new video with/without sound included. The GPS signal status, and currently saved file numbers are also displayed in the corners. If you have overheating protection enabled, the bottom section may turn yellow (close to overheat) or red (overheat limit reached).
It is worth noting that while the main screen is visible, the display will not turn off. If you turn it off manually, the video/photo capturing will not stop, but (on some devices) you may encounter camera-related issues upon turning the screen on again.
Between 2 presses of the Video button (to start/stop), not just one video file is produced. Instead, a whole set of video files is recorded and saved in that session. If you specify the length of video sequences to 1 minute (in the Settings), then during an hour the application saves roughly 60 video files.
These files usually contain ordinary road events, so the files are marked as temporary, and will be deleted during the automatic cleanup. Only when the accelerometer detects a possible crash, or when you touch the screen to protect a video, you indicate that something interesting happened, and the latest recorded video sequence is stored into the safe zone.
The Photo button works much in the same way, except the photo files are not automatically deleted. You set up a snapshot frequency in the settings, and once you start the capturing sequence, photos are continuously being captured and saved on the SD card.
The Video and Photo functionalities use the same camera exclusively. It may take a few seconds to focus and capture a photo, during which time video recording is paused.
During automatic capturing, video recording has priority over photos. But, you can force an immediate photo capture if you press the Photo button to begin or end a session. It is assumed you saw something worth capturing in a photo, so the currently recording video file is saved, the photo captured, and then video recording resumed in a new file.
Volume of capture sounds - in some countries/jurisdictions the shutter sound is mandatory for hardware manufacturers, to prevent/limit spy photos and videos. But, this sound can quickly become annoying when you hear it repeatedly, as each video file is generated. In Voyager you have the option to turn down the volume, or turn the sound off completely.
Warning: Android previously had no official support for this functionality, so volume control is just a workaround controlling a class of system sounds. It may affect the sounds in other apps, too! E.g. Google Maps may be silenced. However, there is a solution for rooted devices. The new method to turn sound off (introduced in Voyager 5.0) is based on an official Android feature, but sadly not all manufacturers implement this properly.
Camera parameters - the parameters (scene mode, white balance, exposure compensation and antibanding) within each camera mode can be individually set, so you can quickly switch between camera modes in the main screen.
Fallback in case of error - on some devices the selected camera parameters (usually the scene mode) may cause errors with video recording. If this happens, you can set the option to continue with the default camera mode, try again without scene mode, or stop with an error message.
Most of the settings here are self-explanatory. It is worth mentioning that not every video combination works properly on all devices. If you encounter problems with video recording, you can check here which settings were used by others: http://www.dailyroads.com/voyager/stats.php
If you are trying to make the app record video on a head unit (car stereo), use the CQ video option, and specify the exact parameters supported by the USB camera. The easier way to find out these parameters is to record a video with the stock camera app. Then look into the header of that video with a program like MediaInfo. The harder way is to take a look into the source code of the camera app, as others have done.
Video quality - the quality options are automatically determined for each device. HQ and LQ were available first on Android, and should be recording video properly both with and without sound. The other pre-defined quality options may have problems with (or without) sound (depending on the device model).
Video camera operation - should be left on "maximize stability" on most devices, to ensure a long-running operation. If the gaps between videos are too large (several seconds), the other option can be chosen, too. But, this doesn't guarantee any improvement, as the camera implementations vary widely between manufacturers, or even device models.
Video stabilization - this is a built-in camera feature on some newer devices, to reduce blurring associated with the motion of a camera. It helps stabilize videos recorded on roads, but often reduces the camera angle. On some systems (especially Samsung devices) enabling this option may cause corrupt videos.
Video protection - what g-force is necessary to trigger the app to protect the latest video sequence. It is recommended to leave this setting at the lowest g-force (3 or 4) which doesn't cause repeated protect operations on bumpy roads. Only sudden stops and accelerations (indicating a possible crash) should trigger this, but the accelerometer sensitivity might be different in various devices.
Only protect - besides automatic protection (as triggered by the accelerometer), you can also touch the screen during video recording to indicate that something interesting happened. In both cases, the latest video sequence is saved into a safe zone, away from automatic cleanup. It is recommended to protect at least the latest 2 files, because the latest file may have reached only to a few seconds when you stopped recording.
Settings: Background mode
Settings: Automatic mode
These settings allow you to use the application like a real black box, to start and stop it automatically without manual intervention. This is the case if you select the app to react to charger connected/disconnected events, or have a "true" car dock. Otherwise you still need to launch it manually.
Voyager can also be properly integrated into automation flows using other apps, such as Tasker. This is done with built-in Android intents.
Play warning sound - whenever video recording stops without an explicit request. This includes error conditions, too, so make sure to select a sound file from your device.
Settings: Formatting & display
Basically, these settings control how speed, elevation and GPS coordinates are displayed on the main screen, recorded videos or even photos. Additionally, you can turn the viewfinder on/off and control the transparency on the main screen.
Unfortunately, Android does not allow anything to be overlaid on the video sequence itself. That's why you can't see such additional data on video sequences viewed outside Voyager. But, there are solutions for this problem.
Date format - currently this option is only used when you are interacting with the accumulated video/photo files. Each file contains a raw timestamp in the name, which is then presented in a nicer format, so you can interact easier with files.
As Android doesn't have support for overlaying anything on video sequences, alternate ways were devised to overlay the timestamps and GPS info on top of video files.
Generate subtitle files - subtitle files (*.srt) constitute a common way to include various text info, displayed at the bottom of videos. Most video player software (such as VLC) can use these files.
Overlay credits - an external online server is used to embed such info directly into the video files. Through the "Overlay GPS data" context-menu option, you can manually upload the desired video files to a special section of DailyRoads.com. To use this service, you initially get 10 credits (in the free version) or 50 credits (in the Pro version), and can later buy more through in-app payments (Play Store) or through the web site (PayPal).
Overlay template - You can choose what info to embed in videos, where to place it and what colors to use.
Converted video files - Finally, the converted files can be downloaded back to the phone, or to any other device.
Settings: File storage
Full path - where to store the video and photo files on the SD card. By default, the path to the first card is used, which may not be removable on certain devices. For constant write/delete operations, it is advisable to use an external storage card (if available).
Starting with Android 4.4 the new system permissions don't allow saving anywhere on the external SD card. Voyager can still record on the SD card, but please select the suggested path (with com.dailyroads.v) in the app's storage settings. You can also try the "Reset paths" button, which keeps your existing selection, but resets the list to usable paths. On some systems, you may even need to move the app to the SD card.
Automatic cleanup also checks this folder to search for and delete the oldest temporary video files or photos. If you want to preserve these files until you have time to review them, simply rename the main folder, so you can start fresh. The old folder will remain on the SD card, like any other folder, outside the reach of the application, and without access to GPS data!
Sub-folders - if not enabled, only 3 sub-folders are created in the main folder. These are named Videos, Tempvideos and Photos, for storing the 3 kinds of files. But, if the option is enabled, each time you press the Video or Photo button to start a session, a new sub-folder is created and timestamped.
Tempvideo and photo capturing limits - allows you to specify limits for storage space, or different other criteria (total duration for tempvideos or number of photos). When a limit is reached, capturing can stop to preserve old files, or the automatic cleanup is triggered and the oldest tempvideo/photo files are deleted, to make room for new ones.
Debug options - should only be used when specifically instructed by us. While a log file is useful to debug problems, it is not enough by itself. We'd also need context info, like the steps leading to the problem, and specific timestamps.
Video and photo files can be uploaded to DailyRoads.com, either automatically (see the video/photo settings), or manually from the Files section. The username and password are auto-generated when the application first runs, so you are not required to register first. However, you can change the username and password on the server, and specify them in the application, too. Once you specify your own username in the app, the password will be hidden.
Our long-term goal is to build, organize and make accessible the largest database of videos recorded on the roads around the globe. We need your help to achieve this, so please upload to DailyRoads.com only geotagged videos with their visibility set to public or anonymous.
Only a limited number of private and friends videos/photos are allowed for each user. When the limit is reached, no new files are accepted.
These are the required permissions for DailyRoads Voyager. Hopefully it is clear why most of these permissions are needed. But, maybe it is worth explaining the sensitive ones:
read phone status and identity - used only to detect an incoming call, so the phone conversation is not recorded along with the video. An outgoing call is not detected, since this is initiated by the user, and another ("more dangerous") permission would be required.
disable your screen lock - allows to record videos with the screen turned off. And when you turn it on, you can access the app's controls immediately, without fiddling with the lock. The lock is disabled only while Voyager is running, either in the foreground or the background. This behavior can be controlled with the "lock screen" option in the general settings.
draw over other apps - needed to display the background buttons.
prevent device from sleeping - used to keep the phone in a state of alertness just enough to continue recording video.
Google Maps permissions - there are also some specific permissions needed for the embedded Google Maps.
Tasker and automation
Voyager can be used as a normal, interactive app, but can also be controlled by other apps via Android intents. This greatly enhances its utility, as it can be incorporated into "profiles" and "recipes". There is some limited automation built into Voyager (see the "Automatic mode" settings), but dedicated automation apps can achieve much more, even voice control (e.g. using AutoVoice).
By convention, Android intents have the last section written in upper case. So make sure you use the proper case when specifying any of the intents listed below.
The first app of this kind, and still the most popular one is Tasker. The free version of Voyager has been part of Tasker's 3rd party category since 2011, and you can still use that route in Tasker * to create a task. You just need to:
Starting with Voyager version 5.0, the "retain" option has been renamed to "protect", but it still works the same way, moving a tempvideo to the protected folder.
Activity action intents
Voyager and Voyager Pro can also be controlled by sending intents directly. The 3rd party category option above just wraps these intents into an easier to use interface. Foreground intents:
These intents can start the app (e.g. with START_VIDEO) and control video and photo capturing. STOP_APP asks Android to immediately remove the app from memory, while STOP_APP_DEFAULT causes a softer exit, leaving the app in memory to finalize uploads.
To specify one of these intents in Tasker * you need to repeat the first 3 steps from the top, then:
Warning: due to how Android handles incoming action intents, you may run into problems if the app is already running in one orientation, while another orientation is specified in the app's settings. There are no problems if the orientations are the same, or set to auto-orientation in the settings. To avoid such potential issues, it's best not to use intents to control an already running app. Instead, you should use a broadcast intent, detailed below.
Background broadcast intents
The above intents will cause Voyager to get into foreground mode. To keep it in background, you can send these intents:
There are 2 new groups here: turn the microphone on/off (for video recording) and show/hide the background buttons (already selected in the "Background mode" settings).
To specify one of these intents in Tasker * you need to repeat the first 3 steps from the top, then:
Voyager not only just receives commands, but can also participate in a dialog, informing other apps of its status. For these broadcast intent "questions":
Voyager can "reply" with these broadcast intents:
In fact, when the respective status changes, the above ON/OFF intents are broadcasted even without a "question". This allows for passive listening of Voyager's status, so you can use them as triggers in automation apps.
In Tasker * you would do this:
This feature of Voyager to participate in a dialog allows integrating dashcam functionality into other apps. One example is iBOLT Dock'n Drive, which offers dedicated in-app buttons to control Voyager.
Camera mode intents
The main screen of Voyager has a camera mode button to quickly go through the pre-set camera modes. You can also set a camera mode programmatically, by sending any of these broadcast intents:
Video and focus modes can also be controlled programmatically, by sending any of these broadcast intents:
CONT means continuous, AUTO means auto-focus, and CONT_AUTO is a combination of the two. Some Android devices may support just a subset of the above focus options. If an option is not supported (not in the app's settings), Voyager just ignores the incoming intent.
Other automation apps
As you can see in the examples above, Tasker can send and receive intents. But, it is not the only Android app capable of working with user-specified intents.
You can discuss about automation in our Google+ community.
* Tested with Tasker version 4.8. In other versions the details may be different, but the same principles still apply.
To send a log file: if enabled in the settings (File storage -> Logging -> into file), the app creates a log file (DailyRoadsLog.txt) in its main folder. After you enable logging, exit the app and try again to reproduce the problem. Would help if you could also specify the hour/minute when you noticed the problem, so we can cross-reference that timestamp in the log file. Then send everything to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Warning! Due to the diversity of potential problems on various devices, the list below is no longer maintained! Please join our new Google Plus community to report problems and read about solutions.
As much as we'd like, we can't test the application on all Android devices. Even Internet-based testing services (like keynotedeviceanywhere.com or perfectomobile.com) have their limitations, especially for applications using the camera.
If you experience any problem while running the application, please report it here. But, also check which combinations of video settings are working for other users. These are the currently known issues:
Version 5.0.1 - Aug 10, 2016
Version 5.0 - Jun 22, 2016
Version 4.1.1 - Mar 28, 2015
Version 4.1 - Dec 16, 2014
Version 4.0 - Mar 18, 2014
Version 3.0 - Jul 21, 2013
Version 2.1.2 - Aug 27, 2012
Version 2.1.1 - Aug 18, 2012
Version 2.1 - Jun 19, 2012
Version 2.0 - Apr 22, 2012
Version 1.7.2 - Sep 29, 2011
Version 1.7.1 - Jul 24, 2011
Version 1.7 - Jul 13, 2011
Version 1.6.2 - May 5, 2011
Version 1.6.1 - Apr 7, 2011
Version 1.6 - Mar 11, 2011
Version 1.5.1 - Nov 12, 2010
Version 1.5 - Nov 6, 2010
Version 1.4.3 - Aug 31, 2010
Version 1.4.2 - Aug 29, 2010
Version 1.4.1 - Aug 13, 2010
Version 1.4 - Aug 8, 2010
Version 1.3 - May 21, 2010
Version 1.2 - Feb 6, 2010
Version 1.1 - Jan 17, 2010
Version 1.0.1 - Dec 31, 2009
Version 1.0 - Dec 30, 2009