June 29, 2007

Mio C310X Map Updates Announced!

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Buy Map Upgrade from Mio


Yes, Finally! - All of us who bought those thousands of Mio C310X units back on Black Friday are pretty excited to hear that Mio has released updated maps that will install onto the Mio C310x units. Mio has had a date of June 20th on their Mio C310x FAQ for a while, pushing things out a week, and they are finally ready.

These maps should be the same as the Mio C220. I believe that the Mio C220 has a good set of maps. A lot of newer roads are now included, and it is obvious that things are much improved with the new TeleAtlas version. Read my Mio C220 Review for more information on the maps.

The details are:

  • Maps are available for $14.95 + $9.95 S+H; $25 bucks for an upgrade very good price.
  • This is a special "Thank You" deal for the people who stuck things out and helped put Mio "On the Map".
  • Mio told me that this is a special offer for C310X owners as most map updates cost upwards to $100+ at other manufacturers. Mio will most likely be around this price for future upgrades.
  • Mio will start taking orders for these map updates on July 16th at their website: www.mio-tech.com.
  • Map updates will be available at some Circuit City locations soon.
  • Details can be found at their website (scroll down once the page loads).

  • More information on the Mio C310x
  • GPS Lodge Review of the Mio C310x

    Also see my Review of the New Mio C220; I also have the new widescreen Mio C520 in for review.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (34) | social bookmarking

  • June 29, 2007

    GPS Steals and Deals - 6/29

    A few stories this last week or so:

  • We have the Mio C520 in for review
  • I previewed the new TomTom GO 720 after playing with it on my trip to TomTom.

    Check out my pricing predictions for the spring and summer - things are starting to line up with what I expect is a good price on these models.

    Highlights
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  • The new TomTom ONE XL is around $349. Read my Review of the TomTom ONE XL.

  • The Mio C220 is selling around $180 through Amazon sellers. Read my Review of the Mio C220.

  • Noticed that the Nuvi 200 is dropping; around $315. Better meeting my expectations on the price vs benefits. See my Hands on Review of the Nuvi 250 for an idea of how well this will perform.

  • Very solid Garmin Nuvi 350 dropped to $370, and it's the #2 seller in Electronics at Amazon, and their most popular GPS. More info on the Nuvi 350.
  • Garmin Nuvi 360 adds Bluetooth to the Nuvi 350 capabilities and is now around $429.

  • The Nuvi 650 offers the widescreen and no Bluetooth or traffic for $465.
  • Garmin Nuvi 660 - Price around $590 at Amazon - Back under $600. See my Hands on Review of the Nuvi 660
  • The Nuvi 680 is selling at Amazon - $674 - Down $50 in the last few weeks. - see my hands on Review of the Nuvi 680.
  • Garmin Nuvi 670 - Need to travel to Europe and navigate when you get there? Garmin Nuvi 670 comes pre-loaded with both US and Euro maps. It's the very capable Nuvi 660 base unit with the extra maps pre-loaded. Also consider the Nuvi 370, or the Nuvi 270 which also have Euro Maps pre-loaded. (Confused? Compare the Nuvi line here)

    New Rebate this Week:

  • Garmin Forerunner 305 - $50 rebate and
  • Edge 305 - $75 Rebate when you sign up for the Powerbar Nutrition Edge Newsletter
  • Offer ends 11/30/07 (We're still waiting on new fitness products. We postulated about new Fitness GPS models back when Garmin released their earnings in February and let's face it we're going to run out of summer up here soon, but recall the original Edge units were announced at the end of August 2005.


    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking
  • June 29, 2007

    More on Apple and GPS Navigation Systems

    On the eve of their iPhone launch, there is some fresh fuel on the rumor fire about Apple working on a navigation system for Mercedes. Arik Hesseldahl, of Business Week, has thrown in his thoughts on the idea, and I think he makes some excellent points. First of all, with the iPhone launch and the fact that it is running full OS X, offers the possibility that the operating system can be ported into many different devices (that cost at least $499), like cars and appliances. He also points out that while a lot of car manufacturers are putting navigation systems into their cars, they aren’t as intuitive as they need to be. I’ve said it before; It’s easy to make a GPS, but it’s hard to make a good GPS, and I would imagine once you load up on the climate controls, audio controls and general car feedback, you’ll make the job of creating a seamless and intuitive interface nearly impossible for anyone except a company like Apple.

    Hesseldahl also walks through some classic and natural extensions of how Apple could bring the intelligence of a car [navigation] infotainment center to a new level by interacting well within the world’s electronic environment. It’s worth a quick read.

    ReadMore at BusinessWeek.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 28, 2007

    Mio C220 & C520 Launch in Australia

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    Not wanting to limit the party to just a few countries in the Northern Hemisphere, Mio has launched the Mio C220 and the Mio C520 down under. Things appear to be a re-application of what's available in the US, as I would expect.

    More at Mio Australia

    Via

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 28, 2007

    Q&A with SiRF Founder

    DigiTimes has a quick Q&A with SiRF founder Kanwar Chadna that is a quick read. SiRF has help build the GPS industry with their revolutionary SiRF star III chipset and has inspired a lot of followers to jump on the high sensitivity bandwagon. The market is not only there for stand alone personal navigation devices, but also for mobile handsets, which Mr Chadha says "Will explode soon." This is driven by not only consumer demand but wireless company development efforts that are concentrating in this area to make their service a differentiator.

    ReadMore at DigiTimes

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 27, 2007

    Telmap Mobile Navigation Integrates INRIX Traffic


    Telmap, a leading provider of mobile mapping and navigation solutions, and INRIX announced the integration of INRIX real-time and predictive traffic speeds as well as incident solutions in the Telmap Navigator application. The enhancement offers both business users and consumers a superior traffic-influenced navigation experience on GPS-enabled mobile devices.

    The INRIX solution will provide end-to-end traffic information for mobile phones equipped with the Telmap program, enabling traffic-influenced routing and maps across more metropolitan markets nationwide than any other traffic information provider. The private label solution will be deployed by Telmap’s industry-leading cellular operators and handset manufacturer partners.

    “We selected INRIX to deliver a traffic information solution that can provide the broadest market coverage and highest-quality traffic information available on any mobile mapping and navigation application,” said Oren Nissim, CEO of Telmap. “This enhancement to Telmap Navigator complements our turn-by-turn navigation, location-based search and other advanced capabilities to equip cell phone users with a single comprehensive package that simplifies the process of getting around.”


    ArrowContinue reading: "Telmap Mobile Navigation Integrates INRIX Traffic"

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    June 26, 2007

    TomTom Enhances Traffic Capabilities

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    TomTom is going to start working with Vodafone in the UK do a better job of predicting travel times, not not time travel, but travel times. The deal lets TomTom access anonymous mobile phone traffic that with a little computer work tells you what traffic is doing on UK roads and thus help derive the true travel time considering traffic.

    This is just another indication that traffic tracking and implementation of traffic solutions on your GPS is heading our way. I've written pretty extensively about traffic capabilities for over a year, and I expect some big product announcements even in the US this year, including GPS units that have historical average speeds for major US roadways.

    Press Release Follows...

    ArrowContinue reading: "TomTom Enhances Traffic Capabilities"

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    Mio Digiwalker C520 Arrives for Review

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    The Mio C520 was officially announced near the end of May after being posted to a retailer site ahead of the release. The Mio C520 was previewed at CES 2007, and launched in Taiwan ahead of the US.

    The Mio C520 is a new widescreen design for Mio that has some clean lines and a new user interface that allows you to use the widescreen real estate to split the information while navigating to show the map on one side and upcoming turn information on the other. The Mio C520 is a text to speech model that speaks street names. The C520 also has Bluetooth capabilities for a handsfree conversation using your Bluetooth enabled phone.

    ArrowContinue reading: "Mio Digiwalker C520 Arrives for Review"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    Traffic Alerts Over HD Radio

    A small but significant step happened in May that may just change how you use a GPS in the future. In May there was a trial of sending traffic reports over an HD radio station, which a significant step in the making of higher bandwidth delivery channels to your GPS. This higher bandwidth will allow for delivery of richer data and more relevant data than is available today. I believe that this is the third of three steps to improve traffic capabilities on your GPS. We already see TeleAtlas adding Inrix historical average speed data to their mapset, we are seeing broader coverage with fleet vehicle tracking of GPS speeds to report back realtime conditions, and finally better bandwidth to get you this data so that you can make better decisions. (Read More on the future of Traffic Reporting). Thanks Jim for sending this in.

    Press Release Follows...

    Broadcast Electronics (BE), Emmis Communications Corporation and NDS, along with iBiquity Digital Corp., jointly announced the successful conclusion of initial HD Radio conditional-access field testing of traffic data services at Emmis station WKQX-FM (Q101) in Chicago. Pilot testing occurred May 23 and 24 and was the first conditional-access test for broadcasting real-time traffic information over the HD Radio system to vehicle navigational systems.

    "Our goal was to establish a foundation for HD Radio conditional access that would provide additional revenue opportunities for broadcasters beyond audio programming. We're very pleased with the results," said Ray Miklius, Vice President Studio Systems for BE, which supplied the digital broadcast equipment for the test.

    ArrowContinue reading: "Traffic Alerts Over HD Radio"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 25, 2007

    TeleAtlas Teams up to Map Indonesia

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    Tele Atlas announced it has signed an agreement with BAKOSURTANAL, the government institution responsible for creating and maintaining large scale geographical maps in Indonesia.

    Tele Atlas plans to incorporate BAKOSURTANAL’s digital maps within its existing Indonesia database by September 2007. The Indonesia map is part of a virtually seamless Southeast Asia map solution from Tele Atlas that includes extensive coverage of Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand. In talking with TeleAtlas recently, I learned that the combination of mapping roads with their own hardware, combined with partnerships in countries where it was appropriate would be the combination that would offer the best way to get global coverage.

    ArrowContinue reading: "TeleAtlas Teams up to Map Indonesia"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    MicroFix Personal Locator Beacon

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    ACR Electronics has introduced the world’s Personal Locator Beacon (PLB)—the MicroFix, a one-button activated, emergency signaling device for hunters, pilots, hikers, climbers and outdoorsmen. The MicroFix, which has just received FCC approvals, is 35% smaller and 25% lighter than its predecessor, the ACR TerraFix, a PLB that aided in the rescue of a number of distressed outdoors enthusiasts around the world over the course of the last two years.

    “In spite of developing a more technologically advanced Personal Locator Beacon that requires a more efficient use of power, features a more sensitive, built-in GPS receiver and employs components more typically found in the latest generation cell phones, we managed to keep the MicroFix at the same consumer price point as the TerraFix I/O, its predecessor,” said Chris Wahler, director of marketing for ACR.

    ArrowContinue reading: "MicroFix Personal Locator Beacon"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 21, 2007

    TomTom GO 720 Preview & First Impressions

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    Update: See my Full Review of the TomTom GO 720

    On my recent trip to TomTom, I was able to play with the new TomTom GO 720 and wanted to give you my first impressions. The TomTom GO 720 was recently announced, and while it’s not yet available to the public, it will be by the end of July/Early August. I think there are a couple of things going on with the TomTom GO 720 that are worth noting. Gone is the big form factor; thin is in. The big news item that was associated with the TomTom GO 720 release was the MapShare program which should allow users to have some limited input initially on the maps, allowing you to input on the correctness of the maps and share those corrections with others.

    The TomTom GO 720 is not just about MapShare, or its slim form factor. It's got a lot more.

  • Complete Information on the TomTom GO 720 here at GPSLodge.com

    ArrowContinue reading: "TomTom GO 720 Preview & First Impressions"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (5) | social bookmarking
  • GPS Lodge Visits TomTom

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    GPS Lodge along with several other bloggers visited TomTom's call center in Watertown NY for a full day's fun of playing with the New TomTom GO 720 (see my First Impressions Post), playing in a TeleAtlas mapping van and an overall GPS-geekfest. The day was a good one, and we learned quite a bit about the world's largest automotive GPS manufacturer.

    The TomTom GO 720 looks to be a pretty innovative device and the MapShare program should set the stage for a new level of mapping accuracy, and competition for your dollar. Dash Navigation has continued to light up the GPS and gadget sites with its idea of a connected GPS, which would use its connectivity to improve the accuracy of maps among other things. Clearly TomTom saw the opportunity to drive this dissatisfier out of product line, and I expect that it will grow to become a robust program.

    The TeleAtlas van and its duties is nothing but amazing. More after the jump.

    ArrowContinue reading: "GPS Lodge Visits TomTom"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    TomTom Buys Horizon Patent Portfolio

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    TomTom announced that it has acquired the entire world-wide patent portfolio of Horizon Navigation Inc. Horizon has been a leader in the design of vehicle navigation systems for eighteen years. It developed original equipment navigation solutions for General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, Porsche, and Nissan. In addition, Horizon designed aftermarket products for Audiovox, Clarion, Dual and Cobra Electronics. The move is generally seen as a way to bolster its defensive position against key rival Garmin in the patent wars that are going on right now....

    ArrowContinue reading: "TomTom Buys Horizon Patent Portfolio"

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    SiRF Acquires Centrality


    SiRF announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Centrality Communications Inc, a leading developer of navigation processor solutions for mobile navigation devices, for a total consideration of $283 million in stock and cash. The deal will bring more power in the mobile chipset area to the GPS chipset capabilities of SiRF.

    “SiRF and Centrality have a shared vision of bringing the benefits of location information to mainstream consumers through innovations. We believe that there is a large potential market opportunity for mobile consumer devices with convergence of location, entertainment and wireless communications capabilities,” said Kanwar Chadha, founder and vice president of marketing for SiRF. “Our combined expertise can deliver very powerful end-to-end multifunction location platforms to location-enable a broad range of new devices and services and to help our customers, operators and content partners add more value to their offerings while significantly enhancing the consumer experience.”

    ArrowContinue reading: "SiRF Acquires Centrality"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    Magellan Maestro 4050 Now Shipping

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    Magellan recently announced the introduction of the Maestro series of three new portable vehicle navigation devices. The new Magellan Maestro 4050 is now shipping at Amazon.

    The Maestro 4050 offers voice input, maps of North america, and is "AAA Loaded" - which includes the famous data at your fingertips that covers restaurants, hotels and locaitons. It also has the "Emergency" icon that highlights your location, the emergency number of your local "AAA" service and a place where you can typein your own "AAA" membership number.


    Maestro 4050 at Amazon

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 20, 2007

    Mio C520 Review

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    See my Full Review of the Mio C520 here at GPSLodge.com or read more Information on the Mio C520 here at the GPSLodge.com


    There’s another review up on the new Mio C520 widescreen GPS that rates the unit very good, and highlights the unit’s sleek design and fuller featureset as key pluses for the new unit from Mio. The Mio C520 follows the rest of Mio’s products as a slightly more cost effective way to get into the GPS market. The unit is list priced at $399 presently, but can be bought for the mid to low $300’s online.

    This review from CNet talks up the design and mentions the fact that they didn’t like the Mio C220 and its screen brightness. I think that they overdid it and were a little picky for a unit that has a street price of less than $200. You can see my review of the Mio C220 for my thoughts on using the Mio C220.

    Well, even for the doubting Thomas’s from CNet the Mio C520 did a pretty good job of impressing them. The capabilities are improving at a pretty fast rate, and widescreens certainly are a big help when showing a lot of data. The split screen on the Mio C520 has the ability to show off extra data about your route or your trip data on a split screen format. Very cool.

    Check out CNet’s review of the Mio C520 for the full details.

  • Read More on the Mio C520 here at the GPSLodge.
  • I have the Mio C520 in for review and expect to be posting my review of the unit in the coming weeks.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking
  • June 19, 2007

    NAVTEQ Seamless Global Map Coverage

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    NAVTEQ has announced the expansion of its popular Entry Maps, creating the only global portfolio of digital maps that are edge-matched to each other and to leading NAVTEQ maps. With Entry Maps, customers now have the ability to license a map for every country in the world from a single source with connectivity across borders. Additionally, because the maps have been harmonized to standard NAVTEQ formats, customers will be able to use them with their existing NAVTEQ-based applications and solutions.

    More from the press release below...

    ArrowContinue reading: "NAVTEQ Seamless Global Map Coverage"

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    The Big Three GPS Makers

    There’s a nice summary of the world GPS/PND market over at YourNav. The editors have a quick write up that talks about what’s going on for the big three; no not the car manufacturers, the big three GPS makers; TomTom, Garmin, and Mio.

    The article is focused on the three regions where the big three brands are strong; TomTom in Europe, Garmin in North America, and Mio in Asia. It also points to the increased competition of each maker in the other regions where they aren’t yet competing well. I liked the post; two things I find interesting.

    1) Mio has about 20% of the world GPS market, with the recent Navman acquisition, right behind Garmin's 25% share. Not bad for a brand that, despite being successful overseas, wasn’t really established in the North America 12 months ago.

    2) That Magellan wasn’t even mentioned as a contender. They are clawing back in the US, and it will be interesting to see how they move forward with their crop of new Maestros.

    More at YourNav

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    New TeleAtlas Map Data for Emergency Responders

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    Tele Atlas announced the availability of Tele Atlas places2protect, a premium product providing highly accurate location-based and property information on emergency medical services and critical access facilities and institutions, including hospitals, schools, daycare centers and government offices. Leveraging Tele Atlas places2protect, federal, state and local governments and commercial enterprises such as insurance and utility companies can integrate accurate location information into their mission-critical, map-based applications. Hummm, what’s that saying? If it’s good enough for the emergency responders to use…. This technology appears to solve that issue of map makers estimating where the house is on a street by interpolating to some extent; this dataset knows where things are.

    More from the Press Release Follows....

    ArrowContinue reading: "New TeleAtlas Map Data for Emergency Responders"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 18, 2007

    Apple Working In-Car Mercedes Navigation?

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    Rumors out say that Apple is working exclusively with Mercedes to create an in car navigation system that both Mercedes and Apple can call their own, living up to the quality of design and functionality that both companies are well known for. The rumors stem from the German magazine Focus and state that the system would include an audio system, no doubt with a seamless interface, and a navigation system. One has to wonder about Apple’s intentions in the navigation world as it seems to be working this deal, the second generation iPhone should have this, and the general trend that everything computing will become location aware. All of this in the hands of Steve jobs is actually thrilling. We might just see a revolution here.

    More at Engadget

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    June 17, 2007

    #1 GPS for Dads - Garmin Nuvi 350

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    Who knows how every dad may vote, but the Garmin Nuvi 350 is not surprisingly the best seller at Amazon, late on Father's Day; must have been a hit with all those dads deciding that it's about time to go get a GPS.

    I ran into one such dad while I was at a large office supply retailer on Father's Day. I was swinging by the GPS area to check out what they had on sale. Well, there was a poor sole there getting guidance on purchasing a GPS from the clerk who didn't have a clue....

    Customer:"What's the difference between the TomTom ONE and the TomTom ONE XL?"
    Clerk: "I don't really know."
    Customer: "What GPS do you recommend?" [Bad follow-up question to ask the clerk who didn't know the difference between the TomTom ONE and the TomTom ONE XL!]
    Clerk: [waving his hand in the area of the higher priced GPS units] "Well, I think all of these are really good, and the prices are really rock bottom."

    I saw the Nuvi 200 there for $399 (~$85 less online), the Maestro 4000 (~$50 less online), while the only real "Rock Bottom" price was the Mio C220 that was competitively priced. Ouch!

    Hope you had a good father's day.


    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 16, 2007

    GPS Steals and Deals - 6/16

    A few stories from this week:

  • Father's Day Buying Guide - Recommendations: Mio C220, Nuvi 350, Nuvi 650/660, and TomTom ONE XL.
  • My TomTom ONE XL Full Review
  • Mio C520 Review post
  • LG LN740 Review post
  • Points of Interest resources post
  • Garmin announced the Nuvi 200W and 250W models.

    Also check out my pricing predictions for the spring and summer - things are starting to line up with what I expect is a good price on these models.

    Highlights
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  • The new TomTom ONE XL is around $360. Red my Review of the TomTom ONE XL.

  • TomTom GO $50 Rebates - TomTom GO 910 $449 after Rebate, and the TomTom GO 510 - $349 after Rebate

  • The Mio C220 is selling around $180 through Amazon sellers. Read my Review of the Mio C220.

  • Noticed that the Nuvi 200 is dropping; around $315. Better meeting my expectations on the price vs benefits. See my Hands on Review of the Nuvi 250 for an idea of how well this will perform.

  • Very solid Garmin Nuvi 350 dropped to $370, and it's the #2 seller in Electronics at Amazon, and their most popular GPS. More info on the Nuvi 350.
  • Garmin Nuvi 360 adds Bluetooth to the Nuvi 350 capabilities and is now around $435.

  • The Nuvi 650 offers the widescreen and no Bluetooth or traffic for $465.
  • Garmin Nuvi 660 - Price around $590 at Amazon - Back under $600. See my Hands on Review of the Nuvi 660
  • The Nuvi 680 is selling at Amazon - $675 - Down $50 in the last few weeks. - see my hands on Review of the Nuvi 680.
  • Garmin Nuvi 670 - Need to travel to Europe and navigate when you get there? Garmin Nuvi 670 comes pre-loaded with both US and Euro maps. It's the very capable Nuvi 660 base unit with the extra maps pre-loaded. Also consider the Nuvi 370, or the Nuvi 270 which also have Euro Maps pre-loaded. (Confused? Compare the Nuvi line here)

  • Haven't used the Magellan Maestro 3000 series yet, but Best Buy has the Magellan Maestro 3100 for $199.


    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking
  • June 15, 2007

    Garmin Nuvi 200W and 250W Announced

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    Garmin announced their Nuvi 200W and 250W today, sneaking the announcement in before the weekend. The two new units from Garmin were disclosed earlier this month and now are on their way to a store sometime in July. The units are a wider version of the Garmin 200 series line that has taken up a position below the most popular GPS in the US, the Nuvi 350. The Nuvi 200W and Nuvi 250W models feature a similar dead simple interface that should be pleasing to a lot of people out there. I used the Nuvi 250 back before it was released and thought it was a pretty good product, comparable to the Nuvi 350 but slightly different in several ways – Read My Review of the Nuvi 250.

    Not a lot of new features here, but certainly a recognition that widescreens aren’t just for the expensive models anymore. I think widescreens are worth the extra money; see my post on widescreen GPS Units.

    The Nuvi 200W will have regional maps (i.e. Continental US + Hawaii + Puerto Rico), while the Nuvi 250W will have North American Maps. The Nuvi 200W will be list priced at $499, and the Nuvi 250W for $549. These will be competing more directly versus the TomTom ONE XL that is priced at $399 (Read My Review of the TomTom ONE XL).

    The Garmin Nuvi 200W and Nuvi 250W are available at Amazon
    Press Release Follows…


    ArrowContinue reading: "Garmin Nuvi 200W and 250W Announced"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    iPhone & Innovation Wars over new Features incl. GPS


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    So it’s pretty well known that the iPhone will not include a GPS in its first incarnation, the simple unveiling has created a whirlwind of activity in the mobile phone space. Phone makers are working hard to keep up with the new design reality created by the iPhone from the iPhone look alike types to the ones that are pushing the envelope with features that include GPS functionality like the Samsung Upstage or the Nokia N95.

    Yesterday the Wall Street Journal had an interesting front page article with insight into the mobile phone market and how the handset makers in the US square off against the wireless providers in a battle for control. This battle appears to be slowing the speed of innovation to consumers as wireless carriers tie innovation to new, higher revenue streams. So, while handset makers want to offer free mapping features, wireless carriers want you to subscribe to monthly navigation subscription packages. The fear is that the wireless carriers become “Dumb Pipes” that are nothing but commoditized bandwidth instead of carriers offering innovation (for a fee). The one wildcard at the party right now is the iPhone. As you might recall, Apple had Cingular/AT&T change how they had their systems configured to offer more and distinctive features.

    Today the WSJ (p.B4) reported that over half of mobile phone subscribers in the US are aware of the iPhone (hard to imagine why it's not higher), and 12% have postponed buying their next mobile phone to wait for the iPhone release. Sounds like some pent up demand for innovative features. Let’s hope Steve Jobs is able to leverage the much hyped iPhone into a market boom and further drive innovation in the market.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    Points of Interest (POI) for your GPS

    A lot of people are getting ready to hit the road this summer with their GPS as the means to travel the roads on a great summertime trip. Well a lot of people are also interested in having the most up to date lists of Points of Interest. Depending on when you updated the maps on your GPS, the Points of Interest listing can be quite old. By the time the maps get burned to a DVD and sold to you, they can already be several months out of date. Did you know that there are about 80+ new Starbucks added in the US every month? If Starbucks is a must have POI for you you’re missing out on a lot of them if you are even a few months out of date. Other key categories for traveling that readers are interested in are:

  • Campgrounds
  • Restaurant chain locations (Applebees, Cracker Barrel, etc)
  • Hotels
  • WalMarts (Some let you park overnight for free)

    Below is a list of sites where you can get POI lists. Loading the POI onto Garmin units is easy with their POI loader. All you need is a PC or a Mac (yes, Mac compatible!) and their free POI Loader software. Got a TomTom? No problem, you can check TomTom's website for a lot of information on making your own POI collection or installing others.

  • GPS POI US - Lots of POI lists - some free some inexpensive. They just added a database of 77,000 School Zones in the US. The databases are well maintained and updated; this can be important when you consider that 80-100 new Starbucks are added every month! Also, while the full collections are generally not free, you get what you pay for. With GPS POI US you are not only getting more up to date POI lists, but the process of geocoding is more refined and can give you more accurate and reliable readings on locations of these points of interest, which can be critical for things like Red Light Cameras, and School zones. If you don't think that you need a Redlight camera POI database loaded, think again if you are in Maryland, Dallas, or Southern California. See their Google Map Mashup of Redlight camera positions below. (Click on the image to get their interactive version.)

    POImashup.jpg



  • Garmin has a list of POI suppliers.
  • TomTom maintains a similar list for TomTom compatible POI collections.
  • POI Factory - a broad collection of POI files that can be uploaded and shared. Free and many quite up to date.
  • GPSPassion has an extensive list of free POI lists at their site available for download and collaboration on.
  • GPS Waypoints is another member supported sharing forum with quite a few collections including a lot of international POI.
  • TomTom-ers shouldn't feel left out, as PocketGPSWorld has a database that's TomTom compatible.
  • I found this site interesting for those of you who want to get into the POI creation game: POI Editor, a slick website that helps you make your own collections and can save that collection in several formats including Garmin, TomTom and Mio.


  • Finally thought that this was cool Garmin Tour Guide capability. When using a compatible Garmin GPS, the unit associates an MP3 file with a POI, and plays it when you get close enough. Great way to hear a nice audio tour. Read More at GeoTourGuide You can even learn how to make your own Garmin Tour Guide (*.GPI) files from them too.

    Do you have others? Leave a comment and list them below.

    Enjoy your trip!



    How Many POI are enough on your GPS? Check out our Post on the subject of POI Counts on GPS Units.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (4) | social bookmarking
  • Garmin RINO Mini-Site

    You may have missed the recent RINO line upgrade announcement, but Garmin wants to tell you more about the new line of GPS handhelds that have built in radio capabilities. The units are pretty popular for outdoor pursuits involving several parties, including hiking, and hunting. The new RINO Mini-site is fairly bare bones as far as information goes, but does give a basic overview of the handhelds, and offers a nice mouse-over view of the main RINO screens. The site gives a good example of why the unit can be valuable when hunting with the recreation of a consumer testimonial.

    An outtake loop is loaded up at YouTube and is seen below.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 14, 2007

    LG LN740 Review

    LG LN740 GPS


    LG announced their new GPS units at CES 2007 earlier this year, and they are showing up on shelves just in time for the summer driving season. The large electronics firm, is more than dipping its toe in the GPS pond with a full line of flat nicely designed units, with the LG LN740 solidly placed as a mid-range GPS with text-to-speech (TTS) that helps define the middle road these days. The unit sports the cost of doing business high sensitivity receiver from SiRF; the SiRF star III chipset. This will help hold onto signals in tougher reception situations.

    CNet has a review up of the LG LN740 and they seem to like the overall design of the unit and its interface. They do take issue with the viewability of the screen saying that it can wash out in sunlight. This type of screen may be OK when you are in the $200 price range (my opinion) it is not OK at twice the cost. The unit is also traffic capable with NAVTEQ’s traffic service. I am interested in how this works or what it is, as NAVTEQ recently bought Traffic.com and I would not be surprised if they start to package the map and traffic capabilities together. I’ll have to dig a bit more on how they can get their service broadcast, as the TMC traffic that most GPS receivers get is powered by Inrix data.

    The bottom line on the LG LN740 from CNet is that at this price there are other GPS units that offer better capabilities. It’s a well-written review, so you should read the review in its entirety if you are interested in the LN 740.

    LG LN740 Review at CNet

    LG LN740 GPS available at Amazon


    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 12, 2007

    Broadcom to Buy Global Locate

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    Broadcom Corporation announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Global Locate, Inc., a privately-held, fabless provider of industry-leading global positioning system (GPS) and assisted GPS (A-GPS) semiconductor products and software. GPS is expected to join Bluetooth® and similar wireless technologies as a pervasive feature in next generation mobile devices. Global Locate's semiconductor solutions are used in mobile phones from leading cellular handset makers and incorporated into products from TomTom NV, the largest personal navigation device (PND) vendor in the world.

    Global Locate and SiRF have been locked in a big court battle over patents for some time. Who knows what happens now that Broadcom is in the picture.

    Overall, I would expect more innovation as a result of this acquisition.

    ArrowContinue reading: "Broadcom to Buy Global Locate"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

    Mio C520 Review

    Mio_C520.jpg

    See my Full Review of the Mio C520 here at GPSLodge.com or read more Information on the Mio C520 here at the GPSLodge.com

    PCMag has a new review up of the upcoming Mio C520- the new widescreen entry from Mio that offers a lot for a small price. The unit also offers a split screen when navigating so that you can be aware of your upcoming turns. The unit runs an updated Mio Map software that facilitates the split screen as well as drive its Text to Speech, Bluetooth handsfree feature, a new “North up 3-D” view and a new simplified user interface. I have the Mio C520 scheduled in for a review at the GPSLodge in the next couple of weeks, so I am interested to see how all of the new features work. (I just recently posted my review of the Mio C220.)The Mio C520 also boasts music and video player capability and comes with conversion software to get your videos in MP4 format.

    PCMag seemed to like the new features, although couldn’t get some of the Bluetooth features to work. At $400 list price, Mio continues to light a fire under the GPS market to drive prices down and include more features in the units at those lower prices.

    ReadMore at PC Mag

    Mio C520 at Amazon

  • Read More information here at GPSLodge on the Mio C520
  • I have the Mio C520 in for review and expect to be posting my review of the unit in the coming weeks.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (3) | social bookmarking
  • June 11, 2007

    NemeriX and Bosch Announce Pressure Sensing GPS Chip

    NemeriX and Bosch Sensortec announced the successful integration of their technology to deliver a leading-edge multi-sensing GPS solution. The new system offers significantly enhanced results for navigating urban stacked road systems, multi-level bridges and tunnels.

    The solution integrates the high-resolution Bosch Sensortec SMD500 pressure sensor with NemeriX's high-accuracy navigation solution, offering the ability to identify if a vehicle is travelling on the upper or lower levels in a multi-level or stacked road, and significantly enhancing turn-by-turn navigation in situations where traffic is travelling in the same direction on different levels of a road system, or where two-way traffic is accommodated.

    ArrowContinue reading: "NemeriX and Bosch Announce Pressure Sensing GPS Chip"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    TeleNav - Location Sharing, Share Reviews of Businesses


    TeleNav launched its latest version of TeleNav GPS Navigator, the original GPS navigation application for mobile phones. Available immediately, subscribers can now send their current location to any other mobile phone that can receive text messages, creating a quick and easy way to meet with friends or co-workers while on-the-go. This makes catching up with friends pretty darn easy.... as long as your friend can find their way to you.

    Customers can also share addresses of favorite businesses, including restaurants, hotels or movie theaters. With TeleNav's Fuel Finder feature, users can send information on local gas stations with the cheapest prices for that day. Other new features include reviews and ratings for nearby businesses and the ability to rate restaurants directly from a mobile phone.

    More from the Press Release Below...

    ArrowContinue reading: "TeleNav - Location Sharing, Share Reviews of Businesses"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    Garmin to Expand Manufacturing - Open 3rd Plant Site

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    Things must be going very well for Garmin these days as they have announced that they are opening another plant in Taiwan. The third plant was disclosed at the annual shareholder meeting on Friday. The plant should cost around $90 million.

    "We thought it was going to be a longer-term expansion plan, but in fact we're already in need of additional spaces, so we're just days away from closing our third factory," Kevin Rauckman, the CFO of Garmin said.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 10, 2007

    TomTom ONE XL Full Review

    TomTomONEXLFront.jpg

    - A Hands on Review by GPSLodge -


    TomTom ONE XL - Recommended on my Father's Day GPS Buying Guide

    The TomTom ONE XL is the follow-up widescreen version of the successful second generation TomTom ONE that was launched last year. Since the TomTom ONE was launched, the GPS world has gone widescreen, and like I had predicted, the widescreen version of the flat form factor TomTom ONE was a sure-fire sequel. For those who are familiar with the TomTom interface, this won’t be a big change from what you’re used to. TomTom has captured the key elements of success in a widescreen version that give you just a bit more to love on the dash as you’re traveling to your destination.

    ArrowContinue reading: "TomTom ONE XL Full Review"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

    Father’s Day GPS buying Guide

    Father’s Day is right around the corners, and judging from the ad fliers, a lot of people are betting on Dad wanting a GPS. There are a lot out there, and I have been reviewing models for over two years now and have boiled the market down to a few models for easy consideration. There are dozens of models to choose from but there are some important features that make moving up in a product line worth it if it fits your budget. I’ll offer the picks and then the technology explanations after that. The industry has moved to flat form factors, as they are easy to pack and carry. I will only offer those models here.


    Entry Level Model – Mio C220

    This small wonder performs well and gets a quick fix on satellites. Mio may not be the first name in GPS units that most people known but they manufacture a lot of units for other brand names. They decided to market their own brand of GPS units and really came onto the US market last year. The Mio C220 is a new entry that is a solid little performer. It comes with maps of the US pre-loaded, works right out of the box and has verbal directions (“Turn Right in 400 yards”). This model can be had for <$200. For more information see me Review of the Mio C220.

  • Mio C220 at Amazon


    Text to Speech Model – Garmin Nuvi 350
    This is the most popular GPS model in the US right now and for good reason. It is from the largest manufacturer of GPS unit in the US, and it has an excellent interface. Garmin is one of the models that you would buy for your grandmother and not fear that she can’t use it; it’s that intuitive. The Nuvi 350 offers Text-to-Speech (TTS), which speaks the road names: “Turn right on Maple Street in 400 yards”, instead of “Turn right in 400 yards”. This is a great technology and helps out if you are navigating in semi-urban or urban areas where streets are tight and you could use the name of the street to be sure you are turning onto the correct street. You can add an optional Traffic adapter to this unit for a little over $100 (If you know you are going to do this, consider the Nuvi 660 below). The Nuvi 350 is about $370 online.

  • I most recently reviewed the Nuvi 360, which is the step up for the Nuvi 350. The only additional feature is the ability to integrate with your Bluetooth mobile phone. I liked the feature, but if you want a recent look at how the Nuvi 350 performs, read my Review of the Nuvi 360.
  • Garmin Nuvi 350 at Amazon


    Widescreen Model – Garmin Nuvi 650/660 or TomTom ONE XL

    The Garmin Nuvi line went wide last year and is an excellent choice for a slightly more upscale GPS. I believe that widescreen GPS units are a lot better experience from a usability and readability standpoint. Read more on this in my post on widescreen GPS units where you can see superimposed screenshots to see how much difference the larger screen makes. The Garmin Nuvi 650 has maps of North America, text-to-speech capability, and an extremely bright screen. The Nuvi 660 adds the ability to receive TMC traffic updates so that you can see traffic jams ahead and route around them. This is a subscription service that costs about $70 a year after the 3 month free trial period. I live near Boston and think that it’s worth it. The Nuvi 650 will cost a little more than $500 online and the Nuvi 660 will cost a little more than $600 online. Finally if you need to travel to Europe, consider the Nuvi 670 that has North American and European maps pre-loaded.

  • See my Review of the Nuvi 660. Again, the Nuvi 650 is identical except for the traffic capability, so you can get a good sense of its features from my Nuvi 660 review.
  • Garmin Nuvi 650 at Amazon
  • Garmin Nuvi 660 at Amazon
  • Garmin Nuvi 670 at Amazon


    The TomTom ONE XL is a more basic navigator from a well-respected company. Not as well known in the US, but #1 in Europe. They are a top-shelf manufacturer, and the TomTom ONE XL comes with Maps of the US, but not Text to Speech. The unit gives very good directions and the widescreen is very nice, not as bright as the Nuvi 650/660. There is one small blemish on the TomTom ONE XL – The interface to get find businesses and addresses as your destination is not as easy at the Garmin units. When finding a “Point of Interest” (POI) or an address to navigate to you have to wade through some screens that are harder to navigate. The maps are solid and the unit is a great price; less than $399 online.

  • See My Review of the TomTom ONE XL
  • TomTom ONE XL at Amazon

    ArrowContinue reading: "Father’s Day GPS buying Guide"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking
  • June 8, 2007

    Garmin Live Ad on 'Tonight Show'

    newgarminlogo.jpg

    Garmin will be trying something new (actually rather old) on Tuesday’s Tonight Show according to the Wall St Journal. The live promotional spot will be an integrated skill/commercial thing that is reminiscent of those old endorsements of cigarettes and such on those old shows from the 1950’s.

    Apparently just before the first ad break, the small skit will include a spot that has Jay’s announcer John Melendez don a labcoat with a Garmin symbol on it and talk about the “Directions Disorder” that affects men who won’t ask for directions. The skit will be followed by a Garmin commercial; hopefully the Yao Ming ad. The move is in response to those of us who skip ads with TiVo. The move of pairing product integration into the show with the ad immediately following the mention increases related recall by 40% - 50%. The skit/ad runs Tuesday night.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    TeleNav Navigation and Traffic on AT&T Phones

    TeleNav.jpg

    AT&T has announced that the AT&T wireless unit's customers now have direct access to traffic information and rerouting services through TeleNav Traffic, offered initially on the BlackBerry 8800, BlackBerry Pearl, BlackBerry 8700c and the new BlackBerry Curve.

    TeleNav Traffic alerts users through voice and on-screen prompts to traffic slowdowns and incidents along their programmed travel route. Recall that TeleNav uses Inrix data for its trffic (and gas price, I assume) feeds.

    With just one click, customers can choose an alternative route or can remain on the original course. TeleNav Traffic calculates and provides an ongoing estimated time of arrival based on the customer's current route and the latest traffic information. Subscribers can also view traffic information on a map and see details of surrounding traffic situations.

    ArrowContinue reading: "TeleNav Navigation and Traffic on AT&T Phones"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    GPShopper & Sprint - LBS Shopping with Slifter

    Sprint customers can now search and find products at local retailers, see price and availability information, and get directions to the store – all on select Sprint phones. Sprint and GPShopper today announced the launch of Slifter, the first mobile local product search application that employs GPS technology to find products at neighboring retail locations. Ahhhh, the coming wonders of Location Based Services; could be a nighmare, or more than likely we'll look back and ask how we ever got along without them!

    GPShopper was a finalist in the TeleAtlas LBS Innovators Series.

    Slifter makes real-world shopping more interactive: customers simply enter a keyword, product name, model number or UPC code to find a product. They can then view product availability, price and promotional information. Sprint GPS capabilities ensure the closest possible retailers are identified in the search. From video games to vacuum cleaners, using Slifter, Sprint customers can now search for more than 85 million products available at more than 30,000 retail stores across the country.

    ArrowContinue reading: "GPShopper & Sprint - LBS Shopping with Slifter"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 7, 2007

    GPS Helps Nab Graffiti Taggers

    can.jpg
    So it sounds like a lowly GPS Equipped camera and some sophisticated computer work to catalogue images of graffiti with GPS stamped information on the image. With a database of images and their locations, Graffiti Tracker then does an analysis of the tag patterns and helps predict where the tagger might hit next.

    NPR just did a quick audio story on the technology and its results.

    More at NPR

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    Mio C310x vs Mio C220 Comparison

    MioC310xvsMioC220.jpg
    The Mio C220 is the fresh new face on the marketplace for Mio who hopes to capitalize on the successes of the Mio C310x half-generation redesign of the original Mio C310 that had an inferior interface. Mio is firmly locked in a battle among the better-known brands for the share of the quickly expanding GPS market. While you might know them best for value models, they are also coming out with higher end models later this year; they announced these at CES 2007. I thought that while the Mio C310x is still hanging around the market I would tell you my thoughts on how it compares to the Mio C220, because both are priced roughly the same in some online retailers.

    I’ll cut to the chase; I like the Mio C220 better than the Mio C310x. See below for why.

    ArrowContinue reading: "Mio C310x vs Mio C220 Comparison"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (3) | social bookmarking

    June 6, 2007

    My Garmin: Zumo Connect

    ZumoConnectCO.jpg

    My Garmin: Zumo Connect - Find and share rides for your Zumo


    You may have missed a little mention last week of the My Garmin announcement buried in the press release that mentioned the fact that Garmin is releasing developer tools to better integrate their GPS units with websites and software tools. My Garmin is a mini site that allows you to get a customized experience from Garmin based on your needs. You’ll need to sign up to get access to the features. Some of the features that they have are great, including registering your GPS to get access to features like icon downloads, access to Geocaching tools, and something called Zumo Connect.

    ArrowContinue reading: "My Garmin: Zumo Connect"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    SiRF SiRFDiRect - Dead Reckoning

    SiRF introduced its SiRFDiRect technology, a portable navigation breakthrough that couples the SiRF star III chipset with acceleration sensors to tell where it's going when GPS signals are blocked. Employing sophisticated algorithms that take advantage of closely coupled GPS and dead-reckoning (DR) sensor measurements, SiRFDiRect technology delivers very high quality positioning, even in the worst GPS signal conditions, without the installation inconvenience and high cost of traditional in-dash navigation systems.

    What's this mean to you? Hit a tunnel and your GPS can still tell where you are; breakthrough...

    Mio is already talking about deployment of this chip in the press release.

    More from the press release below...

    ArrowContinue reading: "SiRF SiRFDiRect - Dead Reckoning"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 5, 2007

    TomTom GO 720 with MapShare

    tomtomgo720.jpg

    TomTom announced the new TomTom GO 720 today with a lot of features that makes it a very attractive package. The biggest of which is related to map updates, called MapShare; an innovative way for users to update maps for the rest of us to use. By using your desktop computer and TomTom HOME, you can edit road features and then upload the information that the rest of us can use. This is a huge step forward for TomTom and TeleAtlas in striving for realtime map updates.

    The new TomTom GO 720 is a flat form factor that has a widescreen, and some great 3-D graphics that show building footprints to improve the overall navigation experience. I am sure this is the first step to incorporating the 3-D urban mapping that TeleAtlas has been working on. Loads of fun extras that allow you to record and use your own voice sets so you can have friends, your belligerent spouse, or your kids offer you turn-by-turn directions. There is also a “Help Me” menu with shortcuts to get you to the police station or service station quickly.

    Looking forward to getting a TomTom GO 720 in for review. There is also a GO 520 available in Europe.

    The TomTom GO 720 will be available near the end of July in the US, for a list price of $499.

    TomTom GO 720 at Amazon

  • Complete Information on the TomTom GO 720 here at GPSLodge.com


    More after the jump...

    ArrowContinue reading: "TomTom GO 720 with MapShare"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (5) | social bookmarking
  • Widescreen GPS

    screensizesuper.jpg

    Size does matter: Actual size comparison of a standard 3.5-inch GPS Screen to a 4.3-inch Widescreen GPS.

    A lot of people are asking about the wave of Widescreen GPS units and are they worth the extra real estate. The classic argument is, “I am traveling straight ahead. Why do I need the widescreen? I need a taller screen to see where I am going better.”

    I say, don’t knock them until you try them.

    The typical screen on a standard width GPS is 3.5 inches diagonally, while a widescreen is 4.3 inches diagonally, which adds up to a lot of real estate difference, not only in width but in height too. The image here is a composite of actual screen shots from a standard width Garmin (SP550) and a widescreen (Nuvi 660) Garmin. This should give you an idea of really how much extra space you are getting, not only in width but in added height. In terms of area, the widescreen is 70% larger than the standard 3.5-inch screen units.

    The best way I can describe it is that the widescreen is like having better peripheral vision that allows you to not only see what’s ahead of you right now, but also what’s going on around you. Let’s face it, not all roads are straight, and having the widescreen offers you a lot more information as you travel.

    Furthermore, when you have the widescreen, you don’t really feel like you need to be on top of the unit, and you feel like you can kick back a bit and relax with this great widescreen hanging out there guiding you. It's a pretty luxurious feeling.

    Finally, the widescreen GPS units offer more space to navigate the unit's interface with; more buttons, easier navigation and typing on the unit. It's just a better experience.

    The TomTom ONE lists right now for $249, and the TomTom ONE XL is $100 more. I think that the extra money is worth it. When moving from the Garmin Nuvi 350 to the Nuvi 650, the price difference is a bit more, but overall I still think that it’s a better choice if it’s in your price range.

    Popular Widescreen Models are:

  • Garmin Nuvi 200W (Lower 48 States + Hawaii Maps) and Garmin Nuvi 250W (North America Maps); neither have text to speech - See my Full Review of the Nuvi 200W/250W
  • Garmin Nuvi 650 – North American Maps
  • Garmin Nuvi 660 – North American Maps and TMC Traffic enabled – See My Review
  • Garmin Nuvi 670 – Pre-loaded with North American and European Maps
  • Garmin Nuvi 680 – With MSN Direct Gas prices and traffic feeds – See My Review
  • TomTom ONE XL – North American Maps and TomTom PLUS enabled – See My Review
  • TomTom ONE XLS - Adds Text to Speech to the TomTom ONE XL
  • TomTom GO 720 - Text to Speech, BlueTooth, Record your own voice prompts
  • TomTom GO 920T - Text to Speech, Bluetooth, Maps of North America AND Europe pre-loaded.
  • Mio C520 – North American Maps and split screen navigation capabilities.
  • Magellan Maestro 4040 – North American Maps
  • Magellan Maestro 4050 – North American Maps and Voice Activated Controls

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking
  • June 4, 2007

    Garmin Nuvi 200 Review

    nuvi200RF.jpg


    CNet has posted a Garmin Nuvi 200 review, and overall they are giving it high marks for its featureset. The well known Nuvi series is well represented by the Nuvi 200, without any critical corners cut to lower the price.

    I liked the Nuvi 250 when I reviewed it before it was publicly available. I thought that it navigated well, offered a sharp set of features all wrapped in a more friendly nuanced interface that was familiar and solid. It seems that I am not alone and that the CNet staff saw that the Nuvi 200 brings a lot of the great functionality of the Nuvi 350 in a simpler package.

    I think that we are collectively hoping for lower pricing on the Nuvi 200 series because the Nuvi 350 in all of its many many units sold, has a rock bottom price (in the $370 range online right now), which is also about what the Nuvi 250 is running.

    See my article on pricing this summer for key GPS models.

    ReadMore at CNet

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

    June 3, 2007

    Mio C220 Full Review

    MioC220GPSFront.jpg

    Hands On Review by GPSLodge.com


    Update: Check out my Father's Day Buying Guide - Includes the Mio C220

    The Mio C220 comes to the US for 2007 and it fits right into a growing stable of value priced GPS units that are available on the market today. Mio made a splash on the market when they blew the doors off Black Friday last year and went on to sell thousands of Mio C310x units. The C220 is a follow-up model that tries to update and compete at the ~$200 price point, which I will tell you already, it does well. The Mio C220 is the anchor in an ever-growing line of GPS units that were previewed at the CES 2007 including the forthcoming C320 and C520 widescreen units. I am looking forward to reviewing them too.


    For a full list of my Full Reviews of GPS units; Click - GPSLodge.com Hands On Reviews


    ArrowContinue reading: "Mio C220 Full Review"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

    DeLorme LT-20 Bundle - New Lower Price

    DeLorme announced that they are lowering the price of their Street Atlas USA 2008 bundle (with the LT-20 GPS receiver) to $69. I very much like the Street Atlas software, and have been a user for many years, and have come to appreciate it's ability to offer a lot of complex capabilities that a windshield mounted GPS can't.

    The Earthmate GPS LT-20 features cutting-edge GPS technologies from STMicroelectronics and DeLorme, with fast satellite acquisition times and superior performance when dealing with reflected GPS signals ― a frequent occurrence in urban settings.

    The updated Street Atlas USA 2008 DVD software includes revisions to its street-level detail for the United States and Canada and, for the first time, highways and major roads for Mexico.

    The combination of the DeLorme Earthmate GPS LT-20 and the included Street Atlas USA 2008 software means anyone with a laptop PC can enjoy the benefits of GPS wherever they travel in the U.S., Canada, and now Mexico, too.

    "By continuously driving down costs and expanding sales through mass distribution we have been able to lower our price points for laptop GPS without compromising quality," said Caleb Mason, DeLorme Director of Marketing. "Laptop GPS offers many advantages over other types, with the large screen providing easy-to-see, wide geographic context. With laptops continuing to replace desktops, we can offer more and more consumers an affordable yet powerful GPS solution to help plan trips and GPS navigate without getting lost."

    Ships with Updated DeLorme Street Atlas USA 2008 DVD Software

    See more at DeLorme

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    June 1, 2007

    Mio Digiwalker C520

    Mio_C520.jpg

    The Mio C520 was officially announced near the end of May after being posted to a retailer site ahead of the release. Mio has stepped up since their true market debut last holiday season with the Mio C310X, a unit that pretty much blew the doors off a lot of retail stores when it was being sold for $149. The Mio C520 was previewed at CES 2007, and launched in Taiwan ahead of the US.

    The Mio C520 has a 4.3-inch widescreen format that can either offer extra map display capabilities, or it offers you the ability to use the extra real estate to display information about your upcoming turns along your route. The Mio C520 is a text to speech model that speaks street names. This is definitely a step up from the Mio C310x or the Mio C220. The C520 also has Bluetooth capabilities for a handsfree conversation using your Bluetooth enabled phone. The press release also talks about the ability to push audio to Bluetooth headphones for watching/listening to media played on the Mio C520.

    ArrowContinue reading: "Mio Digiwalker C520"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

    Rumor Nuvi 200 Series Widescreen? Nuvi 200W & 250W

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    Update: The Nuvi 200W and Nuvi 250W have been officially announced!


    So there is some news coming out of Europe, specifically GPSPassion that Garmin is announcing a Nuvi 200 series in a widescreen model. In talking with Garmin there is no official confirmation at this point.

    Not a total surprise, as widescreens are popular and increasingly crawling down into the value end of the segment. With the TomTom ONE XL at $399, and the Mio C520 in the mid-$300's, it is a smart move to launch a widescreen for the masses. At this writing, the lowest priced widescreen out of the Garmin shop is the Nuvi 600, which is in the mid-$500's.

    We'll wait and see...

    Via GPSTracklog

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

    New Garmin eTrex "H" Line - Vista HCx, Legend HCx, Summit HC, Venture HC

    So Garmin let the new line of eTrex high sensitivity handheld GPS units go officially following the slip of some promotional materials last week. Looks like they won't be available until third quarter. The units are offering the standard fare of excellent eTrex capabilities, now wrapped around the high sensitivity receivers that we've been hoping for since last summer when I thought that they should clean up the eTrex line and bring high sensitivity receivers to the line.

    The new line looks like this:

    eTrex H - $99 - monochrome, no mapping
    Venture HC - $199 - mapping and color, 14 hr batter life
    Summit HC - $249 - Has barometer and compass, 14 hr battery life
    Legend HCx - $269 - add data card capability, 25 hr battery life
    Vista HCx - $299 - adds barometer and electronic compass, 25 hr battery life

    Press Release Follows

    More at Garmin

    ArrowContinue reading: "New Garmin eTrex "H" Line - Vista HCx, Legend HCx, Summit HC, Venture HC"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (3) | social bookmarking
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