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Carpe Iter v4B review | Ruggedised motorcycle sat-nav

Consumer Editor of Bennetts BikeSocial



Carpe Iter v4B review motorcycle tablet_01


Date reviewed: January 2024 | Tested by: John Milbank | Price: £698 including VAT |


To many people, navigation on their motorcycle means either clipping their phone to the bike with something like a Quad Lock or SP Connect mount, or buying a dedicated sat-nav like the Garmin XT2 or the now long-in-the-tooth TomTom Rider 550.

But there is another way… it’s not cheap until you compare the spec and features it has, and there are things you need to be aware of, but riding with the Carpe Iter v4B tablet on review here has genuinely transformed motorcycling for me, and if you love exploring new roads – whether on your doorstep or across continents – it’s a piece of tech that could be well worth investing in. I’ve been using it on a 2019 BMW R1250GS for almost four months now to find out what it’s like for a road rider who also dabbles in gentle green lanes…


Note: BikeSocial members can save 10% on Carpe Iter navigation equipment here. This is an unaffiliated link and available to all direct Bennetts motorcycle insurance customers and BikeSocial members.


  • One of the brightest motorcycle nav tablets

  • Brilliantly clear and large display for easy, safe use

  • Includes Premium Gold subscription to Locus Map

  • A big investment, but arguably worth it for the features

  • Don’t expect it to be like buying a Samsung tablet

OsmAnd is just one of many options available as navigation software, and I love the clear labelling of fuel stations and the add-ons like the weather widget


Features and mapping included

The Carpe Iter v4B is, at its heart, a ruggedised Android tablet that can run your choice of navigation software. When I got mine it didn’t come with any mapping included, but the Prague-based company now supplies the tablets with a year’s Premium Gold subscription to the excellent Locus Map. During 2024, Carpe Iter will launch its own dedicated launcher software that can provide mapping (based on Locus), as well as easy access to apps, media, screen locking and even bike data like speed, revs and more.

Here are the main features of the v4B:

  • 7” display with outstanding 1,000 nits brightness

  • Specific Ublox M9N GNSS chip with up to five location updates/second. Works with GPS, Glonnass, Galileo, Beidou, SBAS and Assisted GPS for accurate coverage pretty much anywhere.

  • 8 Core Helio P60 CPU

  • 8GB RAM

  • 128GB Internal storage plus optional Micro SD card up to 128GB

  • 9,650mAh battery

  • 4G SIM card slot for data and calls

  • Charge via ‘pogo pins’ on the rear, dedicated M8 charging cable, or USB-C

  • Well-made powder-coated lockable motorcycle mount

  • Ability to download apps from Google Play

  • Comes with one year of Locus Maps

  • Option to use any navigation software

  • Compatible with bar-mounted controllers

  • Replaceable screen protector fitted as standard

  • Works in landscape or portrait orientation

  • Front and rear cameras


Locus Map is another great navigation app and is brilliantly featured. I love how I can use real Ordnance Survey maps on it if I want


Of course, being an Android tablet with compatibility with the Google Play store, you can run pretty much any navigation software you want on the Carpe Iter tablet. When I need to get from A to B as quickly as possible, I tend to use Google Maps. If I want software to find me a great winding route, I use Calimoto, and when I want to just explore with a map open in front of me, I use Locus Map or OsmAnd. Of course, these two can also perform excellent turn-by-turn guided navigation, and all of this software is free to try, and Locus and OsmAnd are also very cheap if you decide to go with the premium versions.

Another popular app is Drive Mode Dashboard, which is more focused on off-road riders, but uses the same open-source mapping in the background as Locus and OsmAnd, with some additional features built in. Again, it’s free to try, but I find Locus to be the most versatile for me, especially given how I can run actual Ordnance Survey maps on it if I want (great for legal green-laning in the UK).

OsmAnd has the best display of nearby filling stations of any software I’ve used, but otherwise Locus – which has been extremely popular since before 2012 – is just brilliant.


Buying the Carpe Iter v4B as a kit with the mounting bracket is the best value way. Even better if you want a controller and buy that at the same time too


There’s plenty of storage in the Carpe Iter v4B, but I have all my music on a micro-SD card, which makes it easy to transfer from my Mac and allows me to control it right from the tablet while connected via Bluetooth to my intercom.

In the UK, the Carpe Iter v4B is currently sold direct from the manufacturer in Prague. It’s a very small company, with Jan Balada being in charge of designing the hardware, software development and lending a hand to the customer support team, while the Carpe Iter eshop crew is quick to dispatch in-stock items. It’s important to understand though that if you’re in the UK, VAT isn’t applied at point of sale (but I included it in the price above). The courier will take this money and might charge a fee, so while the price quoted of £698 for the tablet and mounting bracket with charging hardware is a conversion from Euros at the time of writing and includes shipping AND the VAT, it’s possible there could be a small handling charge by the courier.


You don’t need data, but it’s handy

Mapping software like Locus and OsmAnd doesn’t need a data connection as the maps are stored locally – great if you’re out in the wilds – but if you want to use satellite imagery or software like Google maps online, you’ll need a connection (besides the built-in WiFi obviously).

You could tether to your phone’s hotspot, or you can use a SIM in the Carpe Iter V4p pad. Check with your phone contract provider for SIM-only deals as there might be good options there, but I’ve found 1pMobile suits me. I top up £10 every 120 days, then data costs 1p/MB (calls cost 1p/minute and texts are 1p each). That’s been more than enough for me, but do check how much data you use to be sure of what’s best for you.

Glasswire is a handy app for keeping track of how much data you’re using on individual apps, but remember that, depending on what software you use and how you use it, you might not need data at all. I found that Google maps used 26MB over 165 miles, but that was without offline maps; I could have used no data if I’d downloaded the maps, or if I’d used Locus or OsmAnd for instance.


All the weatherproofing flaps and the buttons can be cheaply and easily replaced if needs be (though mine show no signs of undue wear)


Why not just use a phone?

Of course, many people will simply use their phone on their bike, and you can run all the same software (assuming you have an Android phone, as not all nav software works on iOS), but there is a risk involved…

If you’re in the wilderness overseas, if anything happens to your phone you’ve lost your navigation AND communication. It might be fine, but vibration can damage a phone (not just the camera) – research carried out by Bennetts in collaboration with a leading engineer has indicated that it’s possible that bikes with large single-cylinder and twin engines could reduce the effective lifespan of phones. Keep an eye on our YouTube channel for more on that…

However, the chances are your phone will be fine, but there’s also the fact that it’s a smaller screen so harder to read. For basic navigation this isn’t a problem, but if you want to be able to see a map and make decisions on where to go on the fly, it’s important that you’re not taking your eyes off the road for any length of time, so a large, clear screen that’s close to your line of site is essential.

In normal situations, a modern mobile phone can offer very good location accuracy, but it often depends on having a data connection. The Carpe Iter v4B includes a Ublox M9N GNSS chip for GPS, Glonnass, Galileo, Beidou and SBAS for reliable coverage, and 5Hz position updating (five times faster than the average mobile).

Finally, you might be limited to USB charging with a phone, which can be unreliable in the rain: my Samsung Galaxy S21 was water-resistant but the charging port stopped working for a full day after getting damp. And in hot environments, especially with the screen on full brightness (and only the most expensive tend to reach 1,000 nits), wireless charging can be ineffective or even stop altogether.

Investing in a tablet like the Carpe Iter won’t suit everyone, but for those who love finding new roads, it can be brilliant.


The bright screen is essential sunlight


Display layout & clarity

The Carpe Iter v4B has a 7” 1280x720 pixel display that measures 158mm by 90mm. This might sound like a low resolution when compared to devices like my Google Pixel 7 Pro’s 3120x1440 pixel screen, but the clarity and contrast is outstanding, and more than enough for reading maps very clearly. What matters much more on the road is the brightness…

The v4B has a very powerful 1,000 nits screen (also referred to as 1,000 cd/m2), which is much more than a lot of its competition. You can set brightness manually, or of course allow the device to adjust automatically, and this high level of brightness is vital even in the UK. I found that with the sun directly in front of me this screen was clear and legible, but I’d not want it any darker. Equally, with light bouncing off it from behind, that brightness is very important indeed.

It's worth noting that indoors, the screen is absolutely perfect on minimum brightness, but when riding at night it can be a little too bright. A ‘Night Light’ mode has been incorporated that tints the screen amber to the level of your choosing and can be scheduled to turn on at a custom time or from sunset to sunrise to take the glare away.

I bought the Lower Brightness Pro app for £2.29, which uses a neutral overlay to further darken the screen. It’s available free, but paying gives you the useful option of having a widget on the home screen that lets you easily touch to turn it on or off.


The bracket is aluminium and steel, with an excellent powder-coated finish. The locking mechanism is positioned on the side, making it easy to access when mounted behind the screen. You can position it vertically or horizontally.


Mounting to the bike

The price shown includes the active holder, which is a powder-coated aluminium and steel bracket that can be easily locked and holds the tablet securely. While the v4B is a relatively large tablet for its screen size thanks in part to the effective protection fitted, the mounting hardware is very well designed to not have any power cables sticking out of the bottom to get in the way of your bike’s dash.

Buying the parts you need at the same time as the tablet saves money not just in shipping, but also thanks to discounts applied to kits by Carpe Iter. The bracket’s available in an active version – which has pogo pins on the rear to charge the tablet and the M8 charging cable for very harsh environments where the pogo pins might not create a reliable connection – and a passive version that only has the M8 charging lead. Keep in mind that this needs screwing in each time you use the tablet, so I’d go for the active version unless you’re using it pretty much only off-road.

You also need to select whether you want the 12V to 5V converter that powers the tablet to automatically turn on when the bike’s running, or the one that’s live all the time. This only needs connecting to power on the bike, but if you have the BMW Control (see below), it can take power from that device making for an even simpler installation.

The bracket has the same AMPS mounting pattern as Garmin and TomTom, so there are lots of options available. It uses M5 screws, but Carpe Iter promises an M4 adaptor plate is coming soon. You do need to make sure it’s good and solid; the bracket itself weighs 250g, and the tablet is 680g which isn’t a great deal but if you’re riding hard on bad surfaces you don’t want it to shift.


Using the Carpe Iter Short Bracket 12mm on the R1250GS positions the bracket perfectly and holds it very securely


On my R1250GS I found it best to use the Carpe Iter Short Bracket 12mm, which costs an additional £45 if bought at the same time and is perfect. This allowed me to position the tablet above the bike’s dash without fouling the standard windshield whether it’s up or down. All I did was add a small rubbery pad to one corner of the bracket as at speed the windshield flexes back and touches it in the highest position, which could start to scratch.

One thing to note is that you mustn't leave the tablet connected to the bike for long periods of time as it can slowly discharge, causing damage to the internal battery. All devices – even bike chargers – can have some degree of parasitic drain, so over time the power circuit to the tablet can flatten its battery and cause it to fail. Of course, this is covered in the instructions so just pop the tablet out at the end of the day. I made a holder for the wall by the bike for mine.

While the cradle is lockable, it’s not essential to have it locked when riding as the design means the tablet is kept very secure. The lock barrel is on the side though, making it easily accessible even when mounted directly behind the bike’s screen.

The lock’s fine for popping in to get fuel, but like any navigation device, I wouldn’t leave it on when I’m away from the bike for any length of time, and certainly not outside overnight. The temptation would be too great for a thief, and brute force will overcome most cradles.


I’m using the Carpe Iter BMW Control, which uses a brilliantly-designed set of buttons along with the bike’s jog wheel to give complete control. You can also use the Adventure Control on other bikes


Using bar-mounted controllers

The Carpe Iter v4B of course has a touch-screen like any other tablet. Where a dedicated sat-nav might have an advantage is that it can work even with thick motorcycle gloves that aren’t designed to be touch-screen compatible, but like a phone, the Carpe Iter will need some conductivity in the gloves to sense your touches.

Of course, with the large screen comes larger icons to press, and it’s a lot easier to control a tablet like this than some sat-navs and certainly a phone (especially when it’s wobbling around on a mount).

But there is an even better way… using a bar-mounted controller is by no means essential, but it can let you zoom in and out of maps and pan around them without ever taking your hands off the bars. There are a wide range of Bluetooth controllers available, though do make sure they’re designed for use on a motorcycle, and that they’re compatible with the software you’re using.

In my experience, the best option is to use one of the Carpe Iter controllers, which have a dedicated app that runs in the background on the tablet (or any Android device) to offer not only compatibility with pretty much all the main mapping software (you can see a list here), they also allow you to move around the home screen of your device to select other apps, as well as adding extra features like the ability to lock the screen from touch, which is hugely valuable when riding in the rain with any tablet, phone or even sat-nav.

You can get a discount on a controller if buying it at the same time as the tablet, and I’ve reviewed the Carpe Iter Adventure Control here – which is pretty much a universal fit – and the BMW Control here, which utilises the jog wheel fitted to many BMWs, including the GS and XR.


A handy bonus with a device like this is that you can use it to play games and watch video when you’re not riding…


Set-up and updating

Anybody purchasing a Carpe Iter v4B tablet at the time of writing will receive one that’s running Android 11. This might seem a bit behind, given that my Google Pixel phone is on Android 14, but while an update to Android 13 is promised, the most popular navigation software is designed to work on older versions of the operating system – Locus for instance will happily run on Android 5, while OsmAnd needs Android 6.

Ruggedised motorcycle navigation tablets like this tend to be based on a relatively generic platform from a specialist manufacturer, with features incorporated that are specific to the brand, for instance the GPS chip spec, pogo pins, storage etc. They don’t have the updatability of a ‘normal’ tablet from a big brand like Samsung, but the benefits of an incredibly bright screen and far superior charging, for instance, outweigh any less important limitations.

At its core, this is an industrial tablet, and there are plenty that look the same on Aliexpress and the like, but they’re not all the same inside. Besides hardware differences, Carpe Iter says it spends at least an hour and a half on each tablet finalising assembly in Europe to ensure watertightness, as well as building the Android 11 operating system and over-the-air updating features to make this an effective navigation tablet, not just a generic ruggedised Android device.

The v4B was originally an Android 9 device, which would be fine for most software (certainly the dedicated specialist nav software), but Calimoto did require Android 10 in a recent major update. It’s fair to say that it took a while for Carpe Iter to be able to get some of the existing owner’s devices updated from OS9 to 11 but there was a huge amount of work needed to make the step in a way that everyone could deploy, and credit to the company for not just leaving existing devices on OS9, despite the expense.

At first, updating was quite a manual process for users (with video guides supplied by Carpe Iter), but a recently deployed reflasher has streamlined things. This should also provide the base for updating to Android 13, but no tablet has unlimited upgrade potential; even those from the biggest mainstream brands will stop at some point. For instance, the Samsung Active Tab 2 stopped at Android 9, while the Active Tab 3 only supports up to Android 13.

With the specialist navigation software running easily on older versions of Android, many users aren’t worried about updates, but Android 11 is currently more than enough for any software that you might want to run.

Because the Carpe Iter v4B is integrated with the Google Play store, updating apps from there is very simple and can be automatic. The only software that isn’t downloaded from the Play store is Carpe-specific, and the dedicated pre-installed manager app makes updating that a simple one-button press. Otherwise, the Ublox GPS chip has its own app that sends some commands to it, but I’ve not needed to use this, and at most it’s pressing the clearly labelled buttons to reset it.


Riding off-road with Locus Map, switching to the satellite view is a simple button press away. And with a bar-mounted controller, you never need let go of the grips



Unlike mainstream Android devices, security updates are very rare on dedicated navigation tablets. This shouldn’t be an issue as long as you use apps downloaded from trusted sources, but as this is a device that you’ll have on your bike, it’s not intended to be used like you would your smartphone.

Although a Google account isn’t required to set up the Carpe Iter v4B, it is recommended as with any Google Services-enabled Android device. Many users of this and other tablets will create a second account to ensure their main one is kept safe in the event the tablet was stolen or lost, while others enable two-factor authentication for additional security. It’s easy to do from within the Google app or on a browser, and I linked my ‘special’ account to ‘Google Family’ so I could share previous purchases across it. This means I can run Locus on my phone, which is logged into my main Google account, as well as my tablet, which uses my navigation account.

A screen lock can be a pain on a navigation tablet like this, so I’ve turned it off in order to be able to just touch the power button and go straight back to the last screen I had active. That means that when I’m filling up with fuel I can leave the tablet locked in the cradle and just power down the screen to avoid unwanted attention. When I come back, I just touch the power button and it’s back up and running.

But of course, that means there’s no security on the tablet, which is why I won’t run any banking apps on there, and my passwords for my main Google account aren’t accessible.

If you want a do-it-all tablet that you’ll use for banking and everything else, I wouldn’t recommend this or any other tablet designed for motorcycle navigation. Buy an iPad or a standard Samsung tablet… But don’t put it on your bike.


The Carpe Iter v4B is IP67 rated, which means it stands up to immersion and powerful water jets


Waterproofing and shockproofing

The Carpe Iter v4B is properly ruggedised with an alloy chassis contributing to its MIL-STD-810G validation. Using ‘Method 516.6 Procedure IV’ means the tablet has been proven to withstand drops during handling.

While it made me wince, I repeatedly dropped the tablet from one meter onto concrete on all edges and faces, and saw nothing more than a slight marring to the corners of the case. I kept the display on and didn’t see any glitching or problems. The case adds bulk to the Carpe Iter, but it does protect it well.

The Carpe Iter is also IP67 rated, which means it’s fully protected from dust, and against high-pressure jets of water from any direction as well as immersion in 1m for up to 30 minutes.

A motorcycle is an incredibly harsh environment, and Carpe Iter points out that even military drop tests and waterproofing aren’t always enough. If any device is positioned out from behind the screen and is exposed to enough vibration and heavy rain at high speed, it could eventually suffer issues. While the v4B is fully sealed, and I’ve tested it by immersing it in water and using it in the rain, you must ensure the port seals (which can be a little awkward to open) are fully seated and pushed firmly in to be fully water-tight. If ever they were damaged though, they can be easily replaced with spares from Carpe Iter.

The v4B is a seriously rugged device – far more resilient than is needed for most riders – and for those riding hard off road it’s got the spec that should keep working reliably.


The case is thick on the Carpe Iter v4B, but that, along with the alloy internal chassis, helps it stand up to knocks and scrapes easily. Including repeatedly dropping it onto concrete…


Accuracy and ease of navigation

Thanks to the dedicated GPS chip, the Carpe Iter v4B is extremely accurate – usually under 1m – while the ease of navigation will depend on the software you choose to use. If you only ride UK roads using standard nav apps you might not notice a standard device’s inaccuracies as a lot use ‘snap to road’ features, but when riding off-road it can be important. Equally, if you’re riding trails near main roads, that snap-to feature can be irritating. You’re still at the mercy of the scale of mapping and of course how accurately it’s drawn, but a dedicated device like this is almost always more accurate than a phone.

If all you want is to get from A to B as quicky as possible, then Google maps is all you need, and this is probably overkill. If you don’t want to use your phone, I’d suggest a motorcycle sat-nav is best for you.

However, the whole point of using a rugged motorcycle table for navigation is to have access to a huge range of apps, and to find the one that works best for you. Locus and OsmAnd of course can do excellent turn-by-turn navigation, and with Calimoto offering the best winding routes of any software or device I’ve tried, I have everything I need here in a very clear, easy to use device.

Another option is using the tablet for rally roadbooks, and software is included for this (or downloadable). It’s not something I’ve ever tried, but a lot of owners do make good use of it.


Additional features

Besides having a huge degree of versatility in navigation, the Carpe Iter v4B has some other useful (and not-so-useful) features.

As well as the ability to save your own music on the tablet, you can of course stream it from Spotify and any other services when you’re riding or off the bike. I can watch YouTube in the evening, or Disney+, Paramount and more, but Netflix isn’t available to non-Play Protect Certified devices like this and other navigation tablets. It’s the only app that I use that does this, and it can still be side-loaded using an app like APKMirror if you want. Importantly, all the navigation apps are fully downloadable from the Google Play store.

The built-in speaker is adequate, but hampered by the waterproofing and certainly not as good as my Pixel 7 Pro for instance. However, Bluetooth headphones work great (I used this tablet to watch films on a recent long-haul flight), or you can use the 3.5mm port as long as your headphones don’t have an unduly large plug as the aperture isn’t very big. Mine fit fine.



A 13MP camera is fitted to the rear, with a 5MP one on the front. As you’d expect of a rugged tablet these don’t have any image stabilisation, but they’re also poor quality by today’s standards. If you desperately need a photo of something they’ll get you out of trouble, but the chances are that your smartphone will give far better results. Still, it’s infinitely better than having no camera on a Garmin or TomTom!

The SOS button that sits next to the camera button displays key info like allergies, blood type and emergency contacts, though the tablet needs to be unlocked for emergency responders to see it. Whether they’d find the button is questionable though.

As long as you have a SIM installed, you can use the tablet as a phone too, which could be valuable in an emergency. It also gives you the option of only your partner – for instance – having that number and being able to contact you while you’re on the bike.

For me, the ability to use the Carpe Iter tablet for watching movies and playing games is the most valuable addition over a ‘normal’ sat-nav, but it’s the power it holds for navigation that makes it so worthwhile to me.

Another potentially useful feature for BMW owners is that I have Hex GS911 software on the Carpe Iter, which means I can run the diagnostics kit quickly and easily from anywhere.


Battery life

The Carpe Iter v4B’s large 9,650mAh battery provides plenty of power for normal use and certainly provides for hours of viewing when on a plane. When navigating, if the screen is on full brightness it’ll draw more power of course – just over 1,000mA by my measurements using AccuBattery, compared to 350mA with it at minimum brightness, which is what I use indoors. Realistically, a fully charged tablet will easily last all day indoors, but as the screen brightness increases, expect anywhere between around six and 12 hours of use, depending on the conditions and software being used.

The tablet can be charged via USB, but Carpe Iter says you must use the included (two pin, so you’ll need an adaptor in the UK) 2A charger. The reason for this is that, while unlikely, using a defective or cheap charger with higher current capability (like a PD or QC3.0) charger could damage the tablet’s USB port. I mistakenly used my Omnicharge Mobile 12,800 PD power bank with no issues, but it should be avoided. Any good quality standard USB charger up to 2A should be fine, and is what I use, but generally you’ll be unlikely to need to charge the tablet off the bike much.


The sprung pogo pins provide power, just like on a Garmin or TomTom


For most of us, the active mounting bracket will supply power reliably via the pogo pins when mounted to the bike. Depending on how bright the screen needs to be, charging can be fairly slow as the device could be using around 1,500mAh, meaning only around 500mA is being added to the battery at a time. Using very basic maths, that could mean a charge rate of around 5% per hour. With lower brightness though, charge times on the bike are quicker, and that high power screen is great to have when you need it.

If the going gets really tough or wet, the pogo pins might not provide a reliable enough connection (this isn’t an issue I’ve found on the road), but the M8 connector provides a dependable waterproof supply. It’s not higher power than the pogo pins, but vibration, moisture and dirt won’t affect it.


For tougher environments, the v4B has a waterproof M8 charging port that connects to a cable on the cradle


In extremely hot conditions (not just British summers) many lithium-ion batteries will stop charging. But overheating shouldn’t be an issue with the v4B, and certainly users even in central Africa have found it fine. Leave it baking in the sun at a standstill and it might get hot, but with the airflow over the device while you ride there should be no issues at all.

USB ports are not suitable for wet or high-vibration areas, so the one fitted to the Carpe Iter is only for topping the battery up if you need to when off the bike. There’s also no wireless charging ability, but this can cause overheating very easily – I’ve had my phone fail to charge via wireless in the UK and it’s a very inefficient method.


Customer support

Carpe Iter is a very small company, so don’t expect a call-centre to be on hand for an immediate response. Having said that, when I bought my Carpe Iter Adventure Control I had a question so used the company’s support ticket system to raise it during the evening, hoping for a reply the next day. I got my answer within an hour.

It is important to understand that, while there are some Facebook groups for the tablet they’re not owned or monitored by Carpe Iter, so they’re not great for technical support.

The instruction manual supplied with the v4B tablet is very well written and easy to follow, so do use it as almost everything is covered there. You can download the Carpe Iter instruction manual here in 12 different languages.

If you do have a question though, check out the FAQs here, or use the Carpe Iter Support ticket system here.


Five alternatives to the Carpe Iter v4B

If you’re looking for clear and tough navigation on your bike there are a few other options to consider too…

  • Samsung Galaxy Active Tab. Many riders use the Active Tab 2, and it’s available very cheap second hand, but bear in mind that it won’t go past Android 9. The Active Tab 3 is popular too and supports up to Android 13 and is available fairly cheaply online. However, the battery capacity if the Active Tabs is almost half that of the Carpe Iter, and the 8” 1920x1200 pixel screen’s brightness is only 700 nits. It’s also got half the inbuilt storage capacity at 64GB, and you’ll need to source a suitable mounting bracket. Charging is via pogo pins or USB, but be prepared to find a way to seal the USB cable in harsh environments. I’ve not used the Samsung tablet so can’t compare it directly to the Carpe Iter beyond the spec.

  • Thork DMD-T865. A relatively new device, the DMD-T865 comes preinstalled with the DMD2 nav software, but can also run other apps. It includes a charging cradle and runs Android 12. Internal storage is 64GB, with an 8,000mAh battery and 800 nit 1280x800 pixel 8” screen. I’ve not used the Thork DMD tablet so can’t compare it directly to the Carpe Iter beyond the spec.

  • Tripltek 8 Pro. The most expensive of all of the tablets, and it doesn’t come with a motorcycle cradle, the Android 10 Tripltek 8 Pro has a claimed 1,200 nits 8” screen with 256GB internal storage and a 12,200mAh battery. Surprisingly, it relies on a USB connection for charging, which many riders consider to be inferior. I’ve not used the Tripltek tablet so can’t compare it directly to the Carpe Iter beyond the spec.

  • Garmin Tread Overland. At £1,119,99 the Garmin Tread Overland is a costly piece of kit. It’s really intended for use in cars, but it can be fitted to bikes and has an 8” screen in a very rugged body. You can’t install your own navigation software (or anything else), and it doesn’t work as a phone, but it’s the top-end of dedicated sat-navs. I’ve not used the Garmin Tread Overland so can’t compare it directly to the Carpe Iter beyond the spec.

  • Garmin XT2. At the time of this review, the Garmin XT2 is arguably the best dedicated motorcycle sat-nav (TomTom has gone very quiet). But of course it doesn’t have the versatility (or screen size) of an Android tablet, and it isn’t compatible with bar-mounted controllers. Still, it’s bright, tough and relatively simple to use. You can read the full review of the Garmin XT2 here.

You can find all the motorcycle sat-navs we’ve tested here and be sure to regularly check for the discounts available through Bikesocial membership.


I love exploring with a map open on the tablet, but there’s a huge choice of navigation software available to you


Carpe Iter v4B tablet review: Verdict

If you’re not sure if something like the Carpe Iter v4B tablet is right for you – and it is a big investment – I’d suggest downloading Locus and OsmAnd to your phone (for free) and having a play. You need to be more techy than you would to use a basic dedicated sat-nav but take your time to learn a bit about them and then imagine them on a much bigger screen that’s even easier to control.

I cut a piece of card that was the same size as the tablet to see how I’d fit it on the GS, and thought long and hard about whether I really wanted such a large device mounted behind the screen. I’m glad I decided to try it though, as now I have it I just can’t imagine going back to peering at my relatively small phone, or being locked into using just what a Garmin or TomTom can offer.

This won't be for everyone, but if you love discovering new roads it's potentially one of the best investments you can make...

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“I use one” Peter Livsey

“I've had a Carpe Iter pad for a couple of years have used it for adventure riding across America, Africa and Europe on various bikes with no problems through -5°C in Norway and 50°C in Nevada. I've also raced digital roadbook with it and been involved in several spectacular crashes.

“I chose it because it seemed to be the best all-inclusive system at the time, complete with a mounting, charging and bar-mounted control solution. This was convenient without having to research and find a tablet, and a bracket, then figure out a waterproof charging method before finding some kind of controller that would work.

“Software I use includes DMD2, Google Maps, OsmAnd, YouTube YouTube Music, WhatsApp, and Digital Road Book navigation software. Mine is still on Android 9 and I haven’t bothered updating it as everything works perfectly.

“It’s proven tough, versatile and reliable, and the support has always sorted my issues in good time via the ticket system. The unit is still going strong!”