March 31, 2006

GPS Lodge: Monthly Round Up for March 2006

It was a big month for new GPS announcements, partially due to the fact that CeBIT took place in Germany and the fact that many manufacturers are readying their new fleet of GPS units for the summer months. The spring quarter is a big quarter for companies like Magellan, Garmin and TomTom who tend to sell the majority of mobile GPS units.

TomTom launched their new line of TomTom GO’s: TomTom GO 510, TomTom GO 710 and the flagship TomTom GO 910. These all have a widescreen format.

Garmin announced a new mid-tier line: StreetPilot C510, StreetPilot C530 and the StreetPilot C550, with Bluetooth functionality.
They also made a push into adding GPS to mobile smart phones with the Garmin Mobile 20.
There are a couple of new Nuvi’s: the Nuvi 310 and the Nuvi 360 with Bluetooth functionality.
The new GPSMap 378 and GPSMap 478 are land and sea models for navigation on the water and on the road.
Finally, Garmin introduced a new entry level color handheld GPS the eTrex Venture Cx with SiRF star III chipset.

Navman just announced a new line of mobile GPS units. The Navman iCN720 and Navman iCN 750 come with a nice widescreen high resolution display. Navman also announced that you can take pictures with your new iCN and use those pictures to mark Points of Interest, as well as share those pictures with friends and family.

There were several announcements that talked of connectivity for GPS units; opening up the opportunity to track your friends’ locations on your GPS, or your workers, or your arch enemy if you can figure out how to buddy up with him or her. Read more in TomTom WORK and Garmin Buddies.

We also saw evidence of new Magellan products coming to the market with the leak of the Magellan RoadMate 860T and the RoadMate 3000T, both traffic capable.

Here at the GPS Lodge, we received the Garmin Forerunner 205 for Review, (so far so good - I really like it a lot) and offered our opinion on the Garmin StreetPilot C340 vs. the Lowrance iWay 350c.

Finally, we’re excited about our improved mailing list. If you want a weekly recap of the events in the GPS world delivered to your inbox as well as occasional exclusive items, sign up below.



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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 31, 2006

The Best of the Blogpire

Cheapfunwines-2Another week and another Best of the Blogpire. Make sure and check out the latest from all of our blogs and also each blog now offers a mailing list and RSS feed for you to read your news from. Now on with the Best of the Blogpire!

Liquor Snob
- Reviewing Booze Is More Than A Numbers Game - Skorppio Vodka: Feel the Sting

Really Natural - Disturbing News About Organic Dairy Farms - Kashi TLC All Natural Snack Crackers Original 7 Grain

Critical Gamers - Warhammer Marches on PCs this Fall - Spice up your Scrabble with Wildwords

Single Serve Coffee - Review: Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Fair Trade Island Coconut™ K-Cups from Single Serve Coffee.com - Reader Reviews: Aerobie AeroPress Coffee & Espresso Maker

Just The Chips - Texas Hold'em Odds - RFID goes all-in at the casino

Kitchen Contraptions - Cheese Scissors - Wine Preservation Steward

Shaving Stuff - Gillette Fusion Razors - 8 for $14.99 - Free Schick Quattro Midnight Razor

Whats All The Racquet - BROKEBACK BORG - THE FINAL CHAPTER! - What do Vince Spadea and Kevin Federline have in common?

TV Snob - Is That the HDTV you Really Want? - Amazon Now Listing the TCD649180 Dual Tuner Series 2 TiVo

Shirt Snob - Falling in Tank by Ya-Ya - Short Sleeve Top with Leather Band by Lauren Moffatt

GPS Lodge - New Navman GPS Receivers: iCN 720 and iCN 750 with Cameras - Garmin Launches GPSMAP 378 and GPSMAP 478

The Cooking News - Recipe News: Taste of Home Recipes - Wine News: The effect of oxygen on wine

Jay Brewer Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 30, 2006

New Navman GPS Receivers: iCN 720 and iCN 750 with Cameras

navman 750
Navman launched several GPS receivers today with some pretty interesting features. The big news is out of the iCN 720 and iCN 750 which are equipped with NavPix service and a 1.3 megapixel camera. This feature and service allows you to take pictures of locations, let’s say your favorite restaurant, and then save that image as the Point of Interest image that you navigate to. The NavPix service will also allow you to upload and download pictures of locations, sharing them with friends and family. So while this is using still images to show locations, it's a step along the pathway from boring colored maps to Google Earth type navigation using satellite images to navigate through. Sure it would chew up a ton of disk space, but hard drive costs are always falling.

ArrowContinue reading: "New Navman GPS Receivers: iCN 720 and iCN 750 with Cameras"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 30, 2006

New Navman GPS: iCN530

navman icn 530

Navman launched a mid-tier GPS receiver today, the new iCN530, positioning it as a sleek portable GPS receiver. Sleek and pocket-sized, the new iCN530 is less than an inch thick and weighs less than 7 ounces, making the iCN530 one of the lightest and most portable navigation models ever. The iCN530 also features an integrated SiRF Star III GPS antenna and a non-reflective 3.5 QVGA LCD touch-screen.

The iCN530 is packed with some decent features: extended voice guidance which now includes junction and road numbers; clearer map display and color choice; additional 3D next-turn map arrows; and detailed trip-meter report. Furthermore, the iCN530 offers unique one-touch gas and park buttons to help you out in a jam.

ArrowContinue reading: "New Navman GPS: iCN530"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 27, 2006

New Mailing List Features at GPS Lodge

We have a new mailing list feature here at the GPS Lodge - we've upgraded our service and will be sending our emails on a weekly basis to our subscribers in a new format. Better looking, more informative and easier to be a part of.

We're working with FeedBlitz to send out our weekly updates to your inbox if you're signed up with us and our mailing list. We hope you like it. We didn't want to flood you with emails, so we've set this up as a weekly round up hoping to strike that balance of informative without being a pain. The image below is a sample of what you'll see on a weekly basis summarizing the stories we publish here at the GPS Lodge. If you're not a mailing list member, just put your email in the box below and follow the instructions. If you are already on our mailing list; thanks and there's no need to sign up again. We respect your privacy and you'll only be hearing from us.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Garmin Launches GPSMAP 378 and GPSMAP 478


Garmin International Inc, today announced the GPSMAP 378 and GPSMAP 478 -- two versatile and portable GPS navigators that come pre-loaded with a comprehensive set of maps and charts. These are the first portable GPS units to have both land and sea datasets.

"Our customers want GPS navigators that come pre-loaded with the cartography that they need, and the GPSMAP 378 and 478 fit the bill. These two units are the ideal companions whether you're sailing coastal waterways, boating on inland lakes, or driving across North America," said Gary Kelley, Garmin's vice president of marketing. "With optional XM WX Weather capabilities, the GPSMAP 378 and 478 are the only portable units on the market that can also let mariners and motorists know what kind of weather to expect during their trip."

ArrowContinue reading: "Garmin Launches GPSMAP 378 and GPSMAP 478"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 24, 2006

Keep On Top of the Modern Board and Social Game Revolution at CriticalGamers.com

Criticalgamers BlogadIs your closet full of mid-century board game titles like Monopoly and Sorry!? Are you still answering questions about 1980's science and technology questions from a dusty version of Trivial Pursuit? The staff at www.CriticalGamers.com can help move you from the drab repetitive gameplay of yester-year into the entertaining world of modern Eurogames and social card games.

Blogpire Productions is pleased to announce the addition of www.CriticalGamers.com to our growing family of product- and category-specific Web logs. CriticalGamers.com will provide news and reviews of social board games, Eurogames, and card games. Critcal Gamer's goal is to weed-out the mediocre from the slew of modern table top game titles, and to keep readers posted on what's new and popular in the world of social gaming.

At CriticalGamers

Jay Brewer Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 23, 2006

Magellan RoadMate 860 Leaked

The New Magellan RoadMate 860 has been leaked through a vendor site, and is ready for pre-order. The New RoadMate 860 builds on the existing RM800 platform in that it has the MP3 player alongside the usual high quality navigation features. The RoadMate 860 adds a traffic receiver for real time traffic updates and it includes 15 months of traffic feeds for free ($5/mo. after that). The unit also includes text-to-speech features to tell you the name of the upcoming street, and has a 20GB hard drive loaded with US Maps and has unlockable European maps preloaded ($199 to unlock). Around 10GB is available to you to load with your own media.

ArrowContinue reading: "Magellan RoadMate 860 Leaked"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

Magellan RoadMate 3000T Leaked

RoadMate 3000T

The new Magellan RoadMate 3000T is a mid-tier model that will be competing with the likes of the Garmin C340 or the new Garmin C550 and the TomTom 300 or the new TomTom 510. The RoadMate 3000T has a 3.5” touch screen and a 4GB internal hard drive with NAVTEQ maps pre-loaded and the ability to have an add-on traffic module for real time traffic updates.

ArrowContinue reading: "Magellan RoadMate 3000T Leaked"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

Garmin StreetPilot C340 vs. Lowrance iWay 350c

We have had a lot of requests for a comparison of the Garmin StreetPilot C340 and the Lowrance iWay 350c. Both are mid-tier priced GPS units for the car that are good performers in their own way. We have used them both at the GPS Lodge, and wrote up reviews on them.
Review of Garmin StreetPilot C340 by GPS Lodge, or
Review of the Lowrance iWay 350c by GPS Lodge

Let's take a look at the two GPS units.

ArrowContinue reading: "Garmin StreetPilot C340 vs. Lowrance iWay 350c"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Loki Location Based Service - Location without the GPS

lokilogo2.gif

Yes, I know that this is a GPS site, but this caught my eye and I thought I would pass it along. Skyhook wireless has a little thing on the side Loki that is a Wifi based location based service. The software loads on your machine as a browser plug in and looks for Wifi signals, then compares that to their database to see where you are in the world. The technology uses various Wifi SSID signals and their strength to determine where you are. They have mapped dozens of metro areas and continue to build in new features. The software is currently in a Beta version.

ArrowContinue reading: "Loki Location Based Service - Location without the GPS"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 22, 2006

Gadget of the Week: Alpine Blackbird GPS PMD B100

The Apline Blackbird GPS was named “Gadget of the Week” by Time magazine this week. The unit is a mid-tier mobile GPS device that is geared towards integration with your life as it is fully loaded with maps for navigation, plays MP3’s through its FM modulator and is ready to guide your through the tough spots with its traffic ready receiver for grabbing live traffic updates.

ArrowContinue reading: "Gadget of the Week: Alpine Blackbird GPS PMD B100"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 21, 2006

MotionBased now Mac Compatible

MotionBased, the web service to help you analyze your GPS based training data is now moving to a Mac compatible data upload system. The new system is in Beta, and allows a Mac user with the Safari browser to upload his or her data to the MotionBased service from their Forerunner or Edge GPS device. The Mac system has a few restricitons and won't allow you to run the Map Player, and the analyzer, but will allow you to run a lot of features. MotionBased says, "We hope to have complete Safari support this summer."

We reviewed MotionBased last summer before Garmin purchased them and liked the service - ReadMore. We really liked the service, and our only issue was that many non-Garmin devices were not supported. Since MotionBased is now owned by Garmin, it's no big deal and no surprise.

ReadMore - for news on the Mac Compatibility at MotionBased

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Magellan RoadMate 700 - 50% off

Thought that I would mention that the Magellan Roadmate 700 is now 50% off list price over at Amazon - it's moving fast and selling well in this sales event. Sale ends March 27th.

Magellan Roadmate 700 - Save 50%! FREE SHIPPING!

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 20, 2006

New GPS: Garmin eTrex Venture Cx

garmin etrex venture cx


Garmin International Inc., today introduced the Garmin eTrex Venture Cx , an entry-level addition to Garmin's eTrex Personal Navigator product line. The eTrex Venture Cx is the least expensive eTrex handheld unit that combines expandable memory, color TFT display, USB interface, and advanced GPS auto-routing capabilities in a waterproof design. This expands on the "Cx" line that already includes other eTrex products like the Legend Cx and the Vista Cx. The major upgrade here is the color screen and the expandability of the micro-SD slot, which will allow you to carry a good amount of map data around with you.

ArrowContinue reading: "New GPS: Garmin eTrex Venture Cx"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

SiRF Aquires TrueSpan - Mobile Video Solutions

SiRF Technology today announced that it has acquired TrueSpan, a technology company with significant communications systems expertise, for consideration that includes cash and stock. Founded in September 2004, TrueSpan is developing a silicon and software platform that brings high quality digital audio and video experience to consumers in mobile environments. Its technology includes a sophisticated OFDM (orthogonal frequency division multiplexing – a technique for transmitting large amounts of digital data over a radio wave) engine, optimized to support multiple mobile digital video broadcast standards. TrueSpan has development teams in Long Beach, California and Bangalore, India.

The deal puts SiRF in two of the fastest growing areas for mobile devices - GPS and mobile video. SiRF already has a strong position in GPS chipsets, TrueSpan will give it the technology to support multiple mobile digital video broadcasts as TV on mobile sets is starting to penetrate the market. This comes on the heels of SiRF's recent aquisiiton in the mobile arena for BlueTooth solutions - Impulsoft (ReadMore)

ArrowContinue reading: "SiRF Aquires TrueSpan - Mobile Video Solutions"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Garmin Forerunner 205 and Forerunner 305 NOW Shipping at Amazon

garminforerunner305clse.jpg

One of the bigger launches this year will be the launch of theGarmin Forerunner 205 and Garmin Forerunner 305, as they bring a couple of great upgrades to the fitness GPS market. With the reconfiguration of the unit to make it more watch-like, and the inclusion of the SiRF star III highly sensitive GPS receiver chipset, the unit looks like it will be a winner (See our explanation on the SiRF star III chipset, and why it's important). The upgrade to the Forerunner 305 also includes a better fitting heart rate monitor which will be another welcome improvement in the product line. The inclusion of the heart rate monitor is the main difference between the Forerunner 205 vs. Forerunner 305. We are using the Forerunner 205 now and have it in-house for a review - ReadMore.

The older generation Forerunner 201 and 301 have been perennial favorites in the market. I have a Forerunner 201 and I like it. I got it because I liked the GPS aspects of it, but both my wife and I like it for the instantaneous read on our performance while exercising.

Both the Garmin Forerunner 205 and the Garmin Forerunner 305 are available for NOW from Amazon, with FREE SHIPPING. Amazon was going to originally have it available in the middle of February, but pushed the shipment date off until March 1st. The Forerunner 305 is already one of the top GPS sellers at Amazon despite the fact it’s only available for pre-ordering for a few weeks. Amazon has had a couple of false starts on delivering the Forerunner 305, and has pushed "availability" dates off a few times. Let's hope this one sticks.

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

March 18, 2006

GPS Review: Garmin Forerunner 205 Arrives for Review at the GPS Lodge

Garmin Forerunner 205

The Garmin Forerunner 205 arrived for review today at the GPS Lodge, time to put the running shoes on. Garmin announced the upgrade to the popular Forerunner 201 and Forerunner 301 in January at the Consumer Electronics Show. The big change is the shape and the inclusion of the SiRF star III chipset, both targeted at the quality of satellite signal. The wrap around shape helps the unit keep the GPS receiver chip facing the sky for better reception, while the highly sensitive SiRF star III chipset helps keep a lock on the satellite signal (for more information on why the SiRF star III chipset is a big deal – see this article). The shape of the unit also makes it more user friendly and more appealing overall as a training device as it looks more like a watch and less like some techno-gadget.

ArrowContinue reading: "GPS Review: Garmin Forerunner 205 Arrives for Review at the GPS Lodge"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Another HUGE sale on GPS Units at Amazon

There's a big sale going on over at Amazon with some decent cuts in price on a lot of GPS units. See some of the units that are on sale below (Of course Amazon offers Free Shipping on most of these GPS units): Sale ends March 27th.

Mobile/Automotive GPS Receivers


Magellan Roadmate 700 - Save 50%!
Magellan RoadMate 760
Magellan RoadMate 300
Garmin StreetPilot C2610
Garmin StreetPilot C320
Garmin StreetPilot C330
Garmin StreetPilot C340
Garmin StreetPilot i3
Garmin Streetpilot i5
Lowrance iWay 500c

Fitness/Outdoor
eTrex Legend C
eTrex Legend
Garmin Forerunner 201
Garmin Forerunner 301
Garmin GPSMAP 60CS
Garmin GPSMAP 76CS
Magellan eXplorist 100
Magellan eXplorist 200
Magellan eXplorist 300

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 17, 2006

TomTom GO 910 Review & Firmware 6.0

Update:
Here's another Reivew of the TomTom GO 910 GPS

TomTom recently announced their new GO line that includes the flagship TomTom GO 910. With a loads of new features, the unit is sure to be a crowd pleaser. The new TomTom GO line, the TomTom GO 910 brings a new design to the party, a wider 4 inch LCD display (1/2 inch bigger than previous models), pre-installed safety camera database as well as new TomTom HOME software. It will also have the Hands Free features common on TomTom GO's so you can drive and talk on your Bluetooth phone.

The TomTom GO 910 will also support playing of MP3's, audiobooks and podcasts. The TomTom GO 910 will come with a 20GB hard drive reportedly with 16GB for your MP3's and jpgs.

After a first look at the unit, the folks over at MyTomTomGO have a few good things to say about the new product.

The TomTom GO 910 is now available at Amazon with Free shipping.

ArrowContinue reading: "TomTom GO 910 Review & Firmware 6.0"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 16, 2006

TomTom GO 910 Video

TomTom has released a quick video tour of the new TomTom GO 910 Mobile GPS. Nicely done and only a couple of minutes long it covers the new TomTom GO 910 at a high level and introduces the novice to the new TomTom.

ReadMore at Club Tom Tom - or Launch the Quicktime Movie directly.

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Seeing Eye GPS Units for the Blind

Interesting article today in the Boston Globe that talks about how specially designed GPS units can be used to help the blind explore the world without having to rely on others to guide them. The article covers the life changing ability of a GPS equipped laptop computer for the blind can liberate someone from the confines of a well known neighborhood. This particular person is now able to navigate in unfamiliar neighborhoods around Boston or unfamiliar cities across the country.

The software is specially designed to provide safe routes for walking while updating the user to their location and the points of interest around them. The unit also provides a breadcrumb trail feature that allows the user to find his or her way back to their starting point. A solid feature for a unit like this, but while a reasonable regular GPS handheld can be had for a couple of hundred dollars, this whole set-up can cost upwards to a couple of thousand dollars.

ArrowContinue reading: "Seeing Eye GPS Units for the Blind"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 15, 2006

Quick Rundown of GPS Announcements for CeBIT

So, over the last week there have been a lot of announcements associated with the Germany electronics show - CeBIT.

New TomTom GO 510 GO 910
TomTom announced a new line of receivers the TomTom GO 510, the GO 710 and the GO 910. These all have beautiful widescreens, hands-free Bluetooth calling kits and while the GO 510 has maps loaded on an SD card, the GO 910 offers maps on a 20 GB hard drive and the ability to play MP3's. The new line comes with TomTom HOME software that allows quick and easy data storage, back-ups and more on your computer. On top of this TomTom announced software features and services that extend the capability of the TomTom GO line to allow for fleet management, and when used with a phone, allow you to keep tabs on your buddies. (ReadMore)

Garmin New C series - Garmin C550
Not to be outdone, Garmin announced a whole basket of new models and initiatives. The big announcements centered on their mid-tier line up that will expand to include the Garmin C510, and Garmin StreetPilot C550 . While the C510 will have an optional traffic alert antenna, the Garmin C550 will have an integral FM TDC traffic alert antenna as well as MP3 playing capability. These should be available by second quarter of 2006. (ReadMore)

New Garmin Nuvi 310 and Nuvi 360 plus Garmin Online
Garmin also announced upgrades to the Garmin Nuvi – the Nuvi 310 and the Nuvi 360. They have added Bluetooth calling capabilities to the units. (ReadMore) Garmin also announced the Garmin Mobile 20 – a smart phone mount that has a GPS and GPS capabilities built right into it to GPS enable your Treo or select Nokia phones. With this, these phones will be able to use Garmin Online an online service that will feed traffic updates as well as weather information, and more. Sounds a lot like TomTom Plus. (ReadMore)

BenQ GPS Phones
BenQ Mobile, the company formed in October last year when BenQ Corporation bought Siemens Mobile Devices, got CeBIT 2006 under way with a football-themed launch of six mobile phones, including a Windows Mobile 5-based smartphone with Wi-Fi and a GPS receiver built in. (ReadMore)

New Trimble GPS Chipsets - Copernicus
Trimble announced a new GPS chipset that is small and functions at low power consumption levels. The Ultra-Thin Copernicus GPS Module enables system integrators to easily add GPS capability to a mobile device with minimal impact on its size or battery life at a very economical price. (ReadMore)

Mio GPS
Mio announced several GPS units, from stand alone GPS units to mobile phones with GPS capabilities, including the Digiwalker A710. (ReadMore)


One possible future was shown to us - the GPS integrated jacket. So while this might not find its way into every jacket you wear, maybe you'll see it show up in survival suits and emergency responder suits. (ReadMore)

Origami
Finally, Microsoft announced the Origami mini tablet computer platform, which will include GPS modules. This starts to get close to where Garmin is going with the Nuvi, and gets powerful computing in a mobile device that will go anywhere with you. So, no, the tablet will not fit in your pocket like a Nuvi, but you can see how the Origami platform will be portable and take you places.

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Wearable GPS Jacket - the Know Where Jacket


Hitting the halls in CeBIT, the “Know Where Jacket” stormed into the halls to show off the possibilities of GPS location information. The jacket is loaded with all kinds of electronics, but the GPS receiver in the shoulder has the ability to know the location of the wearer, presumably over the integrated mobile phone. The Jacket also has GPS over IP, which allows the unit to know position inside buildings.

So, while they are saying that the jacket has unlimited applications. I would say that a simple mobile phone with GPS capability has more going for it than one jacket that you’ll wear half the time at best. This does not seem like the everyday user's GPS. In emergency situations, I could see the use where the wearer needs to be found when he or she is lost. Anyway, check it out: ReadMore

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Waypoint adds Fleet Management with FleetBoss

Using a GPS navigation system for optimized routing can shave time off every stop, leading to huge savings. Thats one of the reasons FleetBoss Global Positioning Solutions, Inc., based in Fern Park, FL., is now offering the fleet industry Mobile Crossings WayPoint GPS for both in-vehicle and hand-held navigation. The WayPoint is a complete navigation system that features optimized routing, vehicle logging, real-time traffic and weather reports, turn-by-turn spoken directions, complete area and national maps, and the ability to hold entire regions of the United States on-board without any additional memory cards.

ArrowContinue reading: "Waypoint adds Fleet Management with FleetBoss"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Sony PSP to Get GPS

pspmaps.jpg

Yes, the Sony PSP will be getting a GPS (PSP-290) for itself coming soon. Sony Computer Entertainment announced that the little old PSP will get a drop in price (down to $199), as well as a few accessories. The one that we’re interested in (vaguely) is the GPS receiver. It should be available sometime this Fall. What the heck to do with it? Who knows, really, but there will be some games available for use with the PSP and the GPS. Hopefully it fares better than the Gizmondo handheld game that had GPS and isn’t doing so well; they are in receivership right now. The PSP will also be coming along with a USB camera and with a firmware upgrade, you should be able to participate in video and voice chats.

ReadMore

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Updated: Garmin vs. TomTom

It's obvious that Garmin and TomTom are tough competitors fighting for an increasing share of the marketplace in a very hot category. Their sales are up, and so are their profits. The last quarter of 2005 saw big increases in sales with the holiday shopping, and both companies registered nice growth. We also saw recently that Garmin is suing TomTom for patent infringement. See our article


Well, we thought that the folks over at the Motley Fool had a good article covering the GPS market status, but apparently they missed on the patent dispute.

ArrowContinue reading: "Updated: Garmin vs. TomTom"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 14, 2006

Lowrance Sale Done - Subsidiary of Simrad

Simrad Yachting AS and Lowrance Electronics, Inc. (formerly Nasdaq: LEIX) announced today that Navico Acquisition Corp., Simrad Yachting's wholly owned subsidiary, has merged into Lowrance and, as a result, Lowrance has become a direct wholly owned subsidiary of Simrad Yachting. The merger follows a tender offer by Navico for all of the outstanding shares of Lowrance common stock at a price of $37.00 per share, net to the seller in cash without interest. As a result of the offer, Simrad Yachting, through Navico, acquired approximately 95.6% of Lowrance's outstanding common stock.

ArrowContinue reading: "Lowrance Sale Done - Subsidiary of Simrad"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 10, 2006

New Pharos GPS Receivers iGPS-500

pharosigp500

Pharos introduced the Pharos iGPS-500, a powerful new GPS receiver designed to work with the groundbreaking new class of Ultra-Mobile PCs running on Windows XP software. As business becomes ever more global, the iGPS-500 will provide mobile professionals with advanced location and navigation capabilities as a part of a comprehensive desktop experience on a lightweight mobile PC.

ArrowContinue reading: "New Pharos GPS Receivers iGPS-500"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Learn to Pick the Most Luscious Wines on the Planet for Under $20 at CheapFunWines.com

Cheapfunwines-1We're pretty excited here at Blogpire Productions to tell you about our new site - Cheap Fun Wines.

How many times have you shelled out ten bucks for a bottle of wine only to have your hopes dashed when you poured the first glass? The staff at www.CheapFunWines.com is here to help. They're goal is to find the most luscious bottles of affordable wine on the planet for under $20.

Kim and the staff at CheapFunWines.com love wine. There is little in life that’s more fun for them than pouring a new wine or revisiting an old favorite.

What they don’t love is wine snobbery. At www.CheapFunWines they'll promise to write about wine in plain English and make fun of people who don’t. That said, they don't profess to be a wine experts. They're totally wine beginners - each with a keen sense of smell, a decent palate, a passion to learn, and a sense of humor.

For the past six years, the staff at CheapFunWines.com has often trekked to wineries in Napa and Sonoma, trying dozens of reds and whites. Slowly, they've learned what they like (Full-bodied Cab and peppery Syrah) and don't like (Bombastic fruity Zin and overblown Chardonnay).

At CheapFunWines the staff won’t always be right. They won’t always use the proper wine vocabulary. But that’s OK. They're all learning together. So pop a cork and join them on a fun journey to a cheaper, better bottle of vino. And send them your favorites!

At CheapFunWines.com

Jay Brewer Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 9, 2006

TeleAtlas and Mio set partnership for development

Tele Atlas, a leading global geographic content provider, announced today at CeBIT an agreement with Mio Technology under which Tele Atlas becomes the preferred global digital map provider for Mio Technology’s personal navigation (PNAV) devices, including the newly-introduced next-generation Mio C310, Mio C710 and A701 products. The agreement further solidifies Tele Atlas’ position as the digital map provider of choice among PNAV device manufacturers. Terms of the partnership also call for Mio Technology to incorporate Tele Atlas maps within the new models of its existing products in North America and Europe, and for the two companies to collaborate on joint marketing and channel development efforts.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Mio announces Seven new devices at CeBIT - The A710

New Mio devices combine innovative wireless communications, multimedia entertainment, and stylish design.
At CeBIT, Mio Technology Ltd., a leading worldwide supplier of personal navigation GPS systems, will showcase seven new devices that offer stylish form and innovative function. The products define Mio Technology’s commitment to combining wireless communications, multimedia entertainment and sleek design.

During CeBIT — one of the world’s largest information technology exhibitions, running March 9–15 — Mio Technology will display a GPS-capable mobile phone, two personal navigation assistants (PNA), three GPS personal digital assistants (PDAs), and one in-vehicle GPS device. The Mio Technology product line features devices ideal for travel, leisure activities, entertainment and personal information management.

ArrowContinue reading: "Mio announces Seven new devices at CeBIT - The A710"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

March 8, 2006

Garmin StreetPilot C510, C530, & C550

Garminc550-CF-sm.jpg

Update: See our Review of the Garmin StreetPilot C550 - "GPS Review: Garmin Streetpilot C550 Review by GPS Lodge" - (We thought it was excellent).

Garmin International Inc., today announced that it has expanded its best-selling line of StreetPilot c-series automotive navigators with offerings that include exciting new features. The StreetPilot c500 series was formally unveiled at CeBIT, Europe’s premier electronics trade show in Hannover, Germany, from March 9-15, 2006. Based on Garmin’s phenomenally popular c300 series, the StreetPilot C510, StreetPilot C530, and StreetPilot C550 are destined to become the new benchmark in easy-to-use, affordable, attractive, and functional navigation.

With enhancements like Bluetooth Wireless Technology with a hands-free calling interface for over 200 applicable mobile phones, integrated traffic capabilities, a high bright display, and a high-sensitivity GPS receiver, the c500 series again solidifies Garmin as the world’s leading innovator of location technology. Wow, this is going right at the TomTom GO line with the handsfree calling!

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Garmin Mobile 20


Garmin International Inc. today announced Garmin Mobile™ 20 – an automotive navigation system that delivers Garmin’s voice-prompted, turn-by-turn directions using Bluetooth wireless technology on Nokia, Windows Mobile and Treo 650 Smartphones. Garmin Mobile 20 provides both data connectivity as well as hands-free capability and is packaged with the GPS 20SM™, a new mobile phone mount with a built-in, highly sensitive GPS receiver and Bluetooth-enabled speaker and microphone. Garmin Mobile 20 will also be the first Garmin product to use the Garmin Online™ wireless data services that includes real-time traffic, gas prices, safety cameras, weather information, and other location relevant content. Garmin Mobile 20 was announced at CeBIT, Europe’s premier electronics trade show in Hannover, Germany, from March 9-15, 2006.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

New Garmin Nuvi 310 & Nuvi 360 with Bluetooth Hands free

UPDATE: The Garmin Nuvi 350 is being sold at unbelievably low prices right now as the Nuvi 360 is being launched. So, if you don't need the Bluetooth capabilities of the new Nuvi 360, check out the Garmin Nuvi 350 .


Garmin, today announced a new feature for its all-in-one Personal Travel Assistant. The nuvi 310 and Garmin Nuvi 360 will incorporate Bluetooth Wireless Technology, as well as a GPS navigator, MP3 player, audio book player, language translator, travel guide, currency converter, world travel clock, and much more. The nuvi 310 and 360 were announced at CeBIT, Europe’s premier electronics trade show in Hannover, Germany, from March 9-15, 2006. The nuvi's Bluetooth Wireless Technology capabilities and integrated microphone and speaker provide for hands-free mobile phone calls. This easy-to-use calling feature lets users dial phone numbers through nüvi’s touchscreen keypad. In addition, users may look-up and dial numbers from their personalized phone book or from the phone’s call history log that shows calls received, calls dialed and calls missed. If a user does not know the phone number of their destination, they can easily find and dial it from nuvi's points of interest database – such as hotels, restaurants, and gas stations and attractions.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Garmin launches GPS Buddy Program for fleet Tracking

Garmin is pleased to announce a close partnership with GPS-Buddy, a technology company that provides logistical tracking and management solutions for businesses with fleet vehicles. This relationship lets corporations who use Garmin GPS units in their automotive fleets to track those vehicles in real time and communicate with mobile workers via the Garmin GPS unit.

“Thanks to the real-time information transmitted through the GPS-Buddy unit, fleet managers can know where their fleet is and communicate with the drivers 24-hour-a-day, 7-days-a-week,” said Gary Kelley, vice president of marketing for Garmin International. “This information is especially helpful when unexpected delays occur and schedule changes must be made.”

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Garmin GPS in Smart Cars

Garmin today announced that smart, the iconic automotive brand of DaimlerChrysler, will begin offering the smart portable navigator – a Garmin GPS designed for the cockpit of smart’s fortwo and forfour models. The smart portable navigator is a derivative of Garmin’s newly announced StreetPilot c500 series. See related article

“smart cars and Garmin units are a great match because both companies strive to offer customers products with innovative designs, advanced technologies and powerful performance,” said Gary Kelley, Garmin’s vice president of marketing. “We are delighted to work with smart, and are certain that our in-car navigation system will make driving even more fun for smart owners.”

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Origami Mini-tablet PC with GPS


So, the upcoming announcedment of a mini-tablet PC should be interesting as the unit is rumored to be a mini-tablet with full video playback capability along with GPS capability. The origami tablets will most likely have wireless connectivity, and with the added GPS functions, will be able to use location based services, including maps, games and more. Stay tuned for an announcement this week.

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

New BenQ Phones - BenQ EL71

BenQ Mobile, the company formed in October last year when BenQ Corporation bought Siemens Mobile Devices, got CeBIT 2006 under way with a football-themed launch of six mobile phones, including a Windows Mobile 5-based smartphone with Wi-Fi and a GPS receiver built in. BenQ Mobile has also announced that it is to offer Google search applications on some of its phones.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Trimble and u-Nav Offer High Performance, Low Power GPS Chipset Solutions

With SiRF's success in the low power, high accuracy GPS chipsets, everyone seems to be announcing new low power chips! Trimble introduced today the first software license product in the TrimCore(TM) family of Trimble core Global Positioning System (GPS) software technology. With this introduction, Trimble has transformed its extensive experience in GPS software and receiver development into innovative licensed software positioning products. TrimCore is an evolutionary software approach to segmenting GPS into modular, reusable building blocks that more closely meet customer resource requirements to implement GPS -- whether it is on Digital Signal Processors (DSPs), microprocessors or GPS chipsets.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

MAD Maps partners with TomTom

MAD [Motor Adventure Destinations] Maps, Inc., producers of regional and national scenic back road maps that feature full-color landscape relief imaging of local elevations for easy navigation, mileage markers, fuel stops, recommended road side eateries, lodging and other local attractions, has just released digital routes for the TomTom GO and TomTom RIDER portable GPS navigation systems. The two companies will showcase the digital maps on the TomTom RIDER at the Daytona 2006 Motorcycle Rally from March 3-13, 2006 in the Suzuki tent.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 6, 2006

TeleNav Secures $30 Million in Private Funding

TeleNav Inc., the leading provider of wireless location-based services (LBS), which includes GPS navigation and Mobile Resource Management, today announced the closing of a $30 million private equity financing led by Silicon Valley venture firm Menlo Ventures with participation by Lehman Brothers Venture Partners and existing investors, iGlobe partners and Sycamore Ventures.

The funding follows rapid growth in TeleNav's customer base and increased adoption of location-based services during 2005. This new financing will be used to continue TeleNav's growth, supporting investments in product development, sales, marketing and product innovation.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 4, 2006

Earthcomber Free Navigation for Windows based Handhelds

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Users of Windows Mobile-based handhelds now have a new way to shop, travel and comb the surrounding area for anything they want, anywhere they are. Earthcomber, touted as “the ultimate personal navigator,” is introducing itself to users of Windows-powered PDAs and smartphones. This free service has already generated substantial buzz among Palm-powered loyalists.

To the naked eye, Earthcomber first appears like any other type of navigation software – except that its GPS-enabled maps for all territories in the U.S. are conspicuously missing a price tag. All maps, “Look Lists” and “Community” features are entirely free, providing users with tremendous new travel tools at no cost. where do they make their money? Some spot guides can cost extra (see below), but hey, no biggie right? Free navigation - I'll take that.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

Going to China & need directions? ROUTE 66 Mobile 7 for China

If you are going to China and you need some GPS direction, you may want to consider the new product coming out of Nav2 and Route 66 for your Nokia Series 60 Smartphone - Route 66 Mobile 7 for China. Nav2 announces today its partnership with ROUTE 66 to provide ROUTE 66 Mobile 7, for Nokia Series 60 smartphone, a powerful solution for mobile navigation in the Chinese market. Who is Nav2? Nav2 is a partnership between NAVTEQ and Navinfo, the first government sanctioned commercial provider of digital map data for navigation in China - remember we're talking China here.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 3, 2006

Becker Traffic Pro with SVOX Text-to-Speech

Today, Harman/Becker Automotive Systems GmbH officially announced that they now deploy speech output solutions provided by Zurich-based SVOX for their after-market product Becker Traffic Pro. In fact, by combining Harman/Becker's proprietary premium speech recognition software with SVOX TTS they are aiming to bring the final breakthrough for in-car speech dialog systems. So, not only can you hear "Turn Left at Maple Street", but you'd be able to tell the device to "Navigate Home".

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 2, 2006

Trimble announces Ultra-Thin Copernicus GPS Module

trimblelogo.gifUpping the ante in the GPS chip wars, Trimble has announced a thin, low power GPS chip that can handle tough, low signal situations, according to the company. You might think, "So What!", but as chips improve, we get better devices. So these developments increase the pressure on the already nimble chip field to produce better chips and then we get innovations like the Garmin Forerunner 305 product with better signal reception and long battery life.

Trimble introduced today its new Copernicus(TM) GPS receiver -- a thumbnail-sized, surface-mount, low power module ideal for adding Global Positioning System (GPS) capabilities to Bluetooth appliances, sport accessories, personal navigators or cameras, computer and communication peripherals as well as vehicle tracking, navigation, and security products. With major advancements in performance, sensitivity and startup times, the Copernicus GPS module enables system integrators to easily add GPS capability to a mobile device with minimal impact on its size or battery life at a very economical price.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 1, 2006

New TomTom GO 510 GO 710 and GO 910


TomTom today unveiled the future of portable car navigation with the announcement of the new, smart and easy to use TomTom GO range and a collection of new and updated TomTom PLUS content & services. We’re excited to see these, and things are already looking up for the summer season of new GPS units.

"With the launch of TomTom GO in 2004, we created a new category of personal car navigation solutions. It was an immediate hit and we have since shaped and led the industry almost single handedly, outselling any other car navigation device on the market," said Harold Goddijn, TomTom's chief executive officer. "As one of the best selling consumer electronic brands, we see a fast growing category that requires products to be robust and sophisticated in order to meet drivers' needs. The product range we unveil today is the next generation TomTom GO, featuring significant improvements in design and usability, including hardware, software, connectivity and new content & services."

ArrowContinue reading: "New TomTom GO 510 GO 710 and GO 910"

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

New TomTom WORK

Along with the New TomTom GO 510, TomTom GO 710, and TomTom GO 910, TomTom announced a new service in London called TomTom WORK. The system is essentially a tracking system using TomTom GO GPS units in the fleet vehicles as well as a GPRS transmitter to send locatin informatin back to a central location. So, BAM, the consumer product is now fleet enabled and new big volume distribution capabilities are available.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

TomTom GO 910

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TomTom has released a new GPS navigation system, the TomTom GO 910 , a new high end model. Along with the rest of the new TomTom GO line, the TomTom Go 910 brings a new design to the party, a wider 4 inch LCD display (1/2 inch bigger than previous models), pre-installed safety camera database as well as new TomTom HOME software. It will also have the Hands Free features common on TomTom GO's so you can drive and talk on your Bluetooth phone. This TomTom HOME software package is interesting and comes with a USB dock that will allow you to easily connect the device to your computer. This should make the MP3 transfers easier - yes the MP3 transfers.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

TomTom GO 710

TomTom has released a new GPS navigation system, the TomTom Go 710. Along with the rest of the new TomTom GO line, the TomTom Go 710 brings a new design to the party, a wider 4 inch LCD display (1/2 inch bigger than previous models), pre-installed safety camera database as well as new TomTom HOME software. It will also have the Hands Free features common on TomTom GO's so you can drive and talk on your Bluetooth phone. This TomTom HOME software package is interesting and comes with a dock that will allow you to easily connect the device to your computer. This should make map transfers easier to do.

The TomTom GO 710 is going to be a Euro model.

The TomTom GO 710 should be available April 1st, but pricing isn't yet known.


For additional info on features see our coverage of the whole line of new TomTom GO's - the 510, the 710 and the 910.

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

TomTom GO 510

TomTom has released a new GPS navigation system, the TomTom GO 510. Along with the rest of the new TomTom GO line, the TomTom Go 510 brings a new design to the party, a wider 4 inch LCD display (1/2 inch bigger than previous models), pre-installed safety camera database as well as new TomTom HOME software. It will also have the Hands Free features common on TomTom GO's so you can drive and talk on your Bluetooth phone. This TomTom HOME software package is interesting and comes with a dock that will allow you to easily connect the device to your computer. This should make map transfers easier to do.

The TomTom GO 510 includes a 1GB SD card with preloaded maps.

The TomTom GO 510 should be available April 1st, but pricing isn't yet known.


For additional info on features see our coverage of the whole line of new TomTom GO's - the 510, the 710 and the 910.

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Magellan RoadMate 700 vs. Magellan RoadMate 760

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We have had a few readers ask about the main differences of the Magellan Roadmate 700 vs. the RoadMate 760, and is it worth upgrading for a few hundred dollars. Teh Magellan RaodMate line has been around for some time and has been a favorite of the Mobile GPS world. With their NeverLost system used at Hertz as a great way to introduce travelers to GPS units, they have gotten some great name recognition as well as solid learning about how to make simple easy to follow.

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Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking
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