May 31, 2008

Costco - Garmin Nuvi 760 - $349

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Costco is offering the Garmin Nuvi for $349 online (selling for about $440 at Amazon). The very capable unit has Maps of North America, Speaks Street Names, Bluetooth Handsfree, and TMC Traffic capabilities. Offer through 6/22.

For More Information see my Full Review of the Garmin Nuvi 760

Thanks to everyone who sent this in!!!

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

May 29, 2008

Garmin Edge 705 Review - "Holy Grail"


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I like the Garmin Edge 705 that I have in for review right now, and it appears that I am not alone. Wired Mag has a review up of the Edge 705 calling it the Holy Grail for cycling enthusiasts, and for good reason. The thing grabs a signal, dumps a ton of information your way, tells you where to go and when you are done, allows you to analyze the data collected from the heart rate monitor, the cadence sensor and if you are really into it, you can get power readouts if you add a compatible powermeter. The sensors are all wireless and the edge is smaller than a deck of cards.

At Amazon - Garmin Edge 705

Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

May 28, 2008

Best GPS Deal of the Month!; Nuvi 750 at Sam's Club - $299

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The Garmin Nuvi 750 is one of the newer and hotter widescreens on the market. With the latest software and the slim new Nuvi design, it makes for a great high-end package. The unit has a long list of features, but a few standouts are:

  • High sensitivity GPS Chipset
  • North American Maps with 6 Million Points of Interest
  • Beautiful, bright widescreen
  • Multi-destination optimization and routing
  • FM Transmitter to send audio played on its MP3 or Audio book player to your car stereo

    See my Full Review of the Garmin Nuvi 750/760/770 for more information.

    Sam's Club has the Nuvi 750 available for $299 right now, while it's running $367 at Amazon as of this writing.


    Thanks to Rick for sending this in!

    (If you want to wait for the Nuvi 760; reportedly the Nuvi 760 will be $349 from 6/2 - 6/8 at Costco - Thanks Thaddeus )


    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking
  • May 28, 2008

    Mio - 7Mil Units in 2008; Connected GPS in 2009

    Mio recently opened up a new headquarters in Belgium, and had a few things to say about its business; where is it and where it is going. According to GPSNews, and Canalays, Mio has a 9.5% share of the global navigation market (GPS & PDA), which is a combination of the Mio and Navman brands. They recently moved to more of a Navman interface, away from the iGo interface that they had been using. I just reviewed the Mio Moov 300/310 that has that new interface, and for the most part they did a good job, but could use some more work in some areas.

    Mio will be adding in the NavPix capability from the Navman line into the Moov line later this year, as they will be adding cameras to their GPS line.

    Finally, they are now saying that their work on a connected GPS should come to market in Q2 2009, not 2008 like they originally indicated when they announced the work.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 27, 2008

    TomTom ONE 130 - $149 at Amazon

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    TomTom's newest ONE is the ONE 130, that serves up entry level features with a good routing and feature package all for a nice $149 price; a $50 price drop. With the addition of the Easy Port suction cup, the unit is thin, highly portable and very functional. The EasyPort folds up snugly to the back of the TomTom making the whole thing easy to stow in a purse or briefcase.

    The list price is $199, but the unit is going for $149 now. Unfortunately the TomTom ONE 130S, which is the Text to Speech version is not discounted, as it is still $249.

    At Amazon TomTom ONE 130

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 23, 2008

    GeoTagging Pics with iPhone 2.0

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    The folks over at CellFanatic have posted some news about the upcoming iPhone software release that will allow the iPhone to geotag photos taken with its camera. So the whole thing relies on the not-so-good GPS wanna be triangulation capabilities that the original iPhone has. By triangulating or just dead reckoning using cell and wifi signals it can offer a guess as to where you are. In my experience, my iPhone has me in a radius of about half of downtown Boston which is a pretty big swath of area.

    The new iPhone which is supposed to be announced in June, should have a true GPS, eliminating the current patch job of location based information.

    CellFanatic says...

    "While the iPhone lacks the dedicated GPS receiver most of us desire, it still does an adequate job of positioning through cell towers and this capability has now been passed on to the Camera application which presents the user with a pop up window stating, "Camera would like to use your current location". By selecting OK at the prompt, the location data will be pulled from the Maps Application and 'use your current location' in order to deliver the appropriate tags to identify the location the photo was taken. "

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 21, 2008

    Nextar Q4-01 Full Review

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    The Nextar Q4-01 was recently released into a competitive market where more consumers are deciding to move to the widescreen instead of the standard 3.5-inch screens that so many people know. The Nextar Q4 has the 4.3-inch screen which is based on a new user interface. The interface update is a welcome one, as the last Nextar interface was not much to talk about. I reviewed the Nextar C-3 last year and definitely saw room for improvement in the interface and the mount. The Nextar Q4 packs some decent stats into the package along with the redesign including text-to-speech, maps of the 50 states from NAVTEQ, and a light 1.6 million Points of interest. The unit also features an MP3 player and a photo viewer.

    So can the Nextar Q4 with its widescreen and new user interface compete for your dollars in the GPS market?


    ArrowContinue reading: "Nextar Q4-01 Full Review"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

    May 20, 2008

    Mio Moov 300/310 Full Review

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    I have been testing out the Mio Moov 300/310 for several weeks now driving the highways and byways of the Northeast this spring to check out the latest offering from Mio. The Mio Moov series, including the standard screen 200/210, and the widescreen 300/310 are a big change for Mio, as they adopt a new operating system to carry the brand forward. After the acquisition of Navman, Mio decided to bring the software development in-house and leave the iGo interface behind. Switching to the iGo interface helped to launch the brand in the US and was one that set Mio apart from other GPS brands because it was functional, reasonably good and with their value positioning on the unit cost, not a bad trade-off for the value oriented market. I used and wrote full reviews on a lot of these units including the Mio C310X, Mio C220, Mio C230, Mio C320, Mio 520, Mio C720T. Things are changing though, as the big guys drop prices hard and fast, it leaves smaller slices of the market for value oriented brands. With a more competitive market, the bar raised due to other stronger players (think Navigon) coming to the market, it all raises the stakes for the new Moov line and Mio's new software bet.

    From a core product standpoint, the Mio Moov 300/310 comes with maps of the US, and 3.5 million POI on its 4.3-inch widescreened unit. The satellite acquisition times are quick, as it sports the new SiRF InstantFixII chipset. The unit lacks the bells and whistles that are sometimes seen on GPS units, but are barely appreciated; MP3 players, and Picture viewers. The Mio Moov 310 differentiates itself by adding in the TMC traffic receiver for only a few dollars more, and includes a one year subscription to the service which will cost $60 a year afterwards. Pretty good bargain.

    ArrowContinue reading: "Mio Moov 300/310 Full Review"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (16) | social bookmarking

    May 19, 2008

    NAVTEQ Upgrades Traffic Patterns Offering

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    NAVTEQ has updated their Historical Average Speed product, called NAVTEQ Traffic patterns, including more connector roads to stretch out coverage to over a million miles of roadways across North America. The Traffic Patterns product was announced back in February 2007, and announced a partnership to product GPS units with the data through Intellinav this past January.

    So let's review:

    • Dash Navigation has a deal with TeleAtlas for maps, who has a deal with Inrix for historical Average Speed data.
    • TomTom has the new TomTom GO 730 and GO 930 with "IQ Routes" that have a proprietary database of speeds gathered through its TomTom HOME application when you sync your TomTom and allow them to capture anonymous user data (opt in). TomTom uses TeleAtlas, but not Inrix. Oh yea, and TomTom is buying TeleAtlas.
    • Google Maps is using historical average speeds allowing you to "forecast" your time of travel and see the corresponding traffic issues based on Historical Average Speeds.
    • Garmin uses NAVTEQ maps and I had hoped for an entry from Garmin already using Historical Average Speeds to round out the pack.

    More on the NAVTEQ upgrade from its Press Release.....

    ArrowContinue reading: "NAVTEQ Upgrades Traffic Patterns Offering"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

    Pink Nuvi on Oprah's Favorite Things for Summer

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    Garmin gets a boost from Oprah's top picks for the summer as she adds the Pink Nuvi to her list of hot items for the summer. The Pink version is only available at BestBuy right now. She calls the Nuvi "The perfect road trip gadget."

    On her list at the website, she actually calls out the Nuvi 250, which is still a standard screen (3.5-inch) units that has not just the maps of the continental US (Nuvi 200), but has the maps of all of North America. So if you were planning on hitting any of Canada this year, bump it up to the Nuvi 250. If you don't mind the plain old color, you can get the extra map coverage in the Nuvi 250 for about $20 less online than the Pink one at BestBuy.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 18, 2008

    GPS Steals and Deals - 5/14

    Things are starting to settle in for the summer, if you are going to upgrade on features above the base models, I recommend spending money on Text to Speech and Widescreen units if you can afford it. That puts you into a unit like the Nuvi 260W, or the TomTom XL-S. You can always move up from there for additional features like traffic, gas prices, more map coverage (i.e. Europe), optimized multi-stop routing, etc. See below for prices and for links to reviews on a lot of these models.


    Standard Screens - 3.5-inch

    • TomTom ONE - $143 and Free Shipping at Amazon; Entry Level TomTom with Maps of North America, no Text to Speech.

    • Garmin Nuvi 200 at Amazon - $159 No Text to Speech, Continental US Maps, solid interface and routing. See My Full Review - Nuvi 200 for more info. The Nuvi 200 is also available exclusively at BestBuy in Pink or in Blue.

    • Garmin Nuvi 260 at Amazon - $221 Text to Speech, Maps of North America, solid interface. Same quality routing as Nuvi 200, just adds more maps and text to speech. At this point, I am recommending the Nuvi 260 with its updated interface, newer design and slightly lower price; for more see: Compare the Nuvi 260 vs. the Nuvi 350.

    • Nuvi 350 at Amazon $230; down this week - Still a top seller with North American Maps, and Text-to-Speech. Want Bluetooth? Get the Nuvi 360 that adds Bluetooth Handsfree, for two bucks more at - $244.

    • TomTom ONE 130 and TomTom 130S The New TomTom ONEs are out and shipping. The TomTom ONE 130 ($199) offers solid navigator with MapShare and maps of North America. The TomTom ONE 130S ($249) adds Text to Speech. Both come with the fold flat EasyPort mount.


    • Widescreen Models

    • Garmin Nuvi 260W - $266 at Amazon; down $80 in the last three weeks; Text to Speech and a dead easy interface.

    • Nuvi 200W at Amazon $202 - No Text to Speech, Continental US Maps. See My Full Review - Nuvi 200W. Also at Staples for $199.

    • Nuvi 660 at Amazon $338; still the best seller at Amazon - Text to Speech, North American Maps, TMC Traffic Capability included. See My Full Review - Nuvi 660


    • TomTom ONE XL S at Amazon $243 - Text to Speech, North American Maps, MapShare. I think the Text to Speech is worth the extra money, but if you don't need it, the TomTom ONE XL is only $209. Also available at BestBuy bricks and mortar for $189.

    • Nuvi 750 - $372 at Amazon - New thin design with Text to Speech and Maps of North America. Route Optimization - plug in multiple stops and let the unit optimize the route for fastest planning.

    • Nuvi 760 - $415 at Amazon - Down a bit again this week. New thin design with Text to Speech and Maps of North America. Route Optimization - plug in multiple stops and let the unit optimize the route for fastest planning, adds Bluetooth handsfree and built-in TMC traffic. See My Full Review of the Nuvi 760.

    • Garmin Nuvi 780 - $518 - Has MSN Direct 2, with traffic and gas prices sent to your GPS. See My Full Review of the Nuvi 780 for more information.

    • TomTom GO 730 - $446 -New IQ Routes, Text to Speech, and more. Maps of North America.

    It's Running Season and for many, it's time to hit the roads. I am starting to watch the prices on the Forerunners. Steady price these days.


    • Garmin Forerunner 405 is available for pre-order - the watch-like GPS enabled fitness device has a smaller design with all kinds of functionality, including wireless sharing.
    • Forerunner 305 - $214 at Amazon - Heart Rate Monitor with wrist-mounted GPS Receiver, tracks distance and keeps your speed and pace. Syncs to computer for training records.
    • Forerunner 205 - $149 at Amazon - Wrist-mounted GPS Receiver, no Heart Rate Monitor. Tracks distance and keeps your speed and pace. Syncs to computer for training records.

      Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

    May 16, 2008

    Dash Updates and Opens Platform - New Apps on Dash Express

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    Cool stuff ahead with the Dash - they have opened up their platform to other developers as they roll out applications that illustrate the capabilities. The Dash is a pretty amazing GPS with 2-way connectivity that allows for a platform to push information to the unit while you are on the road. Given the flexibility, they are starting to push a lot of things: real estate information, weather, red light cameras, and even geo-encode their Outlook calendars to route right to the address of their next appointments.

    Via Dash

    ArrowContinue reading: "Dash Updates and Opens Platform - New Apps on Dash Express"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 15, 2008

    Drive Europe with a GPS

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    As more people ask, and the summer travel season is right around the corner, I thought I would again offer some advice on driving around Europe with a GPS.... you bought here.

    If you don't have a GPS and want to use one in Europe, I highly recommend that you get one now, before you go. If you do, you can drive here, and get used to it before taking it overseas where things will be a little different; better to be confident of what you are using and navigating with.

    If you are thinking about renting a GPS in Europe, limited non-guaranteed availability and steep rental prices (up to $60/day) can cramp your style, so I thought I would review your options for getting a GPS for Europe. With rental prices that high, it can pay to either buy a GPS and keep it, or buy a GPS and then eBay it when you get back. I will say that the addition of Euro Map data isn't always cheap. I especially recommend a thin GPS for travel as it will save space and hassle.

    ArrowContinue reading: "Drive Europe with a GPS"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

    Garmin Mobile for Blackberry - $99 Lifetime

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    Garmin announced a pretty good move today offering Garmin Mobile to the Blackberry crowd for a $99 lifetime fee. The deal offers Garmin maps and a Garmin interface streamed over the network for your GPS enabled Blackberry. Turn by Turn directions will get you there.... all while giving you gas prices, weather and traffic.

    Very much targeted at the traveling business type, the unit should be pretty popular with road warriors, or the growing legion of consumers who are heading out to their kid's games on the weekend tapping away to friends.

    The $99 lifetime fee is a new move from the usual monthly fee or daily/one time use fees on a lot of other navigation plans.

    After the Nuvifone, and launches like this, clearly Garmin has figured that they need to be a part of the mobile phone navigation market.

    Press Release follows....

    ArrowContinue reading: "Garmin Mobile for Blackberry - $99 Lifetime"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 14, 2008

    Garmin StreetPilot C580 with MSN - Hot Buy at $224

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    The MSN Direct connected Garmin StreetPilot C580 is available for a pretty low $224 today, with MSN traffic, gas prices and more. The unit is a standard, 3.5-inch screen with maps of North America, and text to speech so it says the name of the streets. I reviewed its sister product the Nuvi 680 (Garmin Nuvi 680 Full Review) a while back and enjoyed the capabilities. These days, having the gas price capability is a nice plus. The StreetPilot line is not a flat product like the Nuvi, but to get the Nuvi 680 that is flat (and widescreened) you'll pay almost $400.

    At Amazon Garmin StreetPilot C580 with MSN Direct

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    Nokia - 50% of Mobile Phones to have GPS by 2010

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    Nokia is a powerhouse of a mobile phone maker, and with the move to acquire map maker NAVTEQ, they set in motion the wheels to make sure that they are a key player in location based services, and navigation. According to a recent interview, Michael Halbherr, the head of Nokia's location based activities, said that they are set to hit their goal of having half of their handsets GPS enabled by 2010-2012.

    I have no idea if that means the death of the GPS stand alone device or not, but I am leaning more and more towards not these days. When GPS units cost $400 for an entry model, I could see the attraction of a small screen, phone based navigator that was essentially free (already had the phone and an extra $10 a month is pretty cheap).

    With the drop in GPS prices, entry level units are going to be under $100 and that's not even a splurge item for many folks. Unless the connectedness of the mobile phone can offer a significantly better user experience, I think that the spread of mobile phone GPS will only spur demand for a better and not too expensive stand alone GPS device.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    TomTom/TeleAtlas Deal gets Euro OK

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    The European Union gave clearance of the TomTom TeleAtlas deal which paves the way for the merger to move forward; the US gave its OK last year.

    "The Commission concluded that the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition," an European Union executive said in a statement.

    TomTom and Tele Atlas issued a joint release on the subject saying:

    "The ruling of the EC is the best possible outcome for TomTom and Tele Atlas allowing the new combination to go ahead with the full execution of its strategy."

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 13, 2008

    GPS Dash Mount Options

    It's unfoutunately illeagal to mount your GPS on the windshield in Minnesota and California, but a lot of people also don't want to have those suction cup rings on the windshield to deal with either. There is always the dash mounting option that solved these problems.

    Here are a couple of options:

    1. Adhesive disk - these come with almost all GPS units, usually black and can go right on your dash. I saw a driver the other day with one of these mounted vertically on his dash near the center stack that put the GPS well within reach. Wouldn't work in my car, but it looked great in his. The downside may be looks; a lot of folks don't want one of these stuck to the dash no matter what.


    2. Garmin Friction Mount - Garmin offers this, and a lot of people are happy with it, judging from the emails I get from readers and the ratings on Amazon.

    GarminPortableFrictionMount.jpg

    3. Bracketron NavMat GPS Friction Mount - is another option that allows you to use the mount along with the suction cup mount that came with your GPS. I have also had readers write in about this one too, and from the reviews at Amazon, a lot of people seem to like the mount for a lot of different GPS models.

    NavMat2.jpg

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (3) | social bookmarking

    May 11, 2008

    GPS Steals and Deals - 5/11

    Best buy this week has to be the Nuvi 260W that dropped again this week - down about $75 in the last two weeks; very good navigator. Widescreen and text to speech with the new thin Garmin design.


    Standard Screens - 3.5-inch

    • TomTom ONE - $146 and Free Shipping at Amazon; Entry Level TomTom with Maps of North America, no Text to Speech.

    • Garmin Nuvi 200 at Amazon - $152 No Text to Speech, Continental US Maps, solid interface and routing. See My Full Review - Nuvi 200 for more info.

    • Garmin Nuvi 260 at Amazon - $217 Text to Speech, Maps of North America, solid interface. Same quality routing as Nuvi 200, just adds more maps and text to speech. At this point, I am recommending the Nuvi 260 with its updated interface, newer design and slightly lower price; for more see: Compare the Nuvi 260 vs. the Nuvi 350.

    • Nuvi 350 at Amazon $236; down this week - Still a top seller with North American Maps, and Text-to-Speech. Want Bluetooth? Get the Nuvi 360 that adds Bluetooth Handsfree, for two bucks more at - $238.

    • Circuit City has the Magellan 1200 for $149 - skip it and buy a Garmin 200 (above) or a TomTom ONE (above) for about the same price and get a better unit.

    • Widescreen Models

    • Nuvi 200W at Amazon $199 (down this week) - No Text to Speech, Continental US Maps. See My Full Review - Nuvi 200W. Also at Staples for $199.

    • Garmin Nuvi 260W - $272 at Amazon; down $75 in the last two weeks; Text to Speech and a dead easy interface.

    • Nuvi 660 at Amazon $344; still the best seller at Amazon - Text to Speech, North American Maps, TMC Traffic Capability included. See My Full Review - Nuvi 660


    • TomTom ONE XL S at Amazon $244 - Text to Speech, North American Maps, MapShare. I think the Text to Speech is worth the extra money, but if you don't need it, the TomTom ONE XL is only $227. Or $199 at BestBuy

    • Nuvi 750 - $374 at Amazon - New thin design with Text to Speech and Maps of North America. Route Optimization - plug in multiple stops and let the unit optimize the route for fastest planning.

    • Nuvi 760 - $422 at Amazon - Down a bit again this week. New thin design with Text to Speech and Maps of North America. Route Optimization - plug in multiple stops and let the unit optimize the route for fastest planning, adds Bluetooth handsfree and built-in TMC traffic. See My Full Review of the Nuvi 760.

    • Garmin Nuvi 780 - $507 - Has MSN Direct 2, with traffic and gas prices sent to your GPS. See My Full Review of the Nuvi 780 for more information.

    It's Running Season and for many, it's time to hit the roads. I am starting to watch the prices on the Forerunners. Steady price these days.


    • Garmin Forerunner 405 is available for pre-order - the watch-like GPS enabled fitness device has a smaller design with all kinds of functionality, including wireless sharing. Probably won't deliver in time for the Boston Marathon tomorrow though...... Garmin is launching the Forerunner 405 at the Boston and why not, one of the best marathons in the world meets one of the coolest fitness devices. I like biking more than running, so, I tend to think the Edge 705 is cooler.... I took my first ride with it recently.

    • Forerunner 305 - $214 at Amazon - Heart Rate Monitor with wrist-mounted GPS Receiver, tracks distance and keeps your speed and pace. Syncs to computer for training records.
    • Forerunner 205 - $149 at Amazon - Wrist-mounted GPS Receiver, no Heart Rate Monitor. Tracks distance and keeps your speed and pace. Syncs to computer for training records.

      Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 8, 2008

    TomTom RIDER 2 - Juiced up and Enhanced

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    TomTom announced a new enhanced TomTom RIDER2 that updates the unit with some of the best features of the other TomTom devices while adding to the cache of motorcycle driven features to bolster its appeal. The newly enhanced RIDER allows updates through MapShare, offers the latest Map guarantee, adds the Help Me! capability to the menu, trip stats features, and a nice itinerary planning and sharing ability to help people create and manage custom POI sets and itineraries.

    Press release after the jump...

    ArrowContinue reading: "TomTom RIDER 2 - Juiced up and Enhanced"

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

    May 7, 2008

    Design a Garmin Garage Winner


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    You've seen the icons you can download for the Garmin GPS units, and now you could win a Garmin Nuvi 205 if your icon is the winner of the contest. Every week Garmin will choose 5 weekly winners, for which you will get a t-shirt. At the end of the contest, they will put up all icons for internet voting. If the net likes what you've done, you win the contest and the Nuvi 205.

    Cruise over to Garmin and check out the entries so far. Get creative, and submit your own.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 6, 2008

    Top 5 Rated GPS - Consumer Reports

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    The Garmin Nuvi 760 came out on top of Consumer Reports' latest GPS rating, with TomTom and Magellan also rounding out the top 5. It's not a big surprise that these three occupy the top 5, I have always said, it's easy to design a GPS, but it's hard to design a good one. The big guys have been designing their units for years, and the difference is a solid understanding of the basics, with a very good interface. I am still not as impressed with the Magellan interface still as the Garmin and TomTom interfaces.

    The Top 5 were:

  • Garmin Nuvi 760 (See my Garmin Nuvi 760 Full Review),
  • Garmin Nuvi 660 (See my Garmin Nuvi 660 Full Review),
  • TomTom Go 920T, (See my TomTom GO 920T Full Review),
  • Garmin Nuvi 350, and
  • Magellan Maestro 4250 .

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking
  • May 5, 2008

    Find Cheapest Gas Prices - GPS Options


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    Let's face it, gas prices are pretty high, and finding cheaper gas can save some big bucks. There are some great options to help find cheap gas prices around you where ever you go. Instead of driving around and keeping track of the ever changing gas prices there are a couple of ways to keep track of gas prices when you need them and where you need them. Let's run through some options for GPS units:

    Garmin Nuvi 680 & Garmin Nuvi 780 - Both Garmin Nuvi models come with MSN Direct services optional, which with a $50 annual subscription you will get the ability to search nearby regular gas prices. The feed comes over the FM airwaves and is cached on the unit. When I reviewed both units, I found that the gas price capability was one of the most attractive features on the units. It was easy to find gas for a nickel or a dime cheaper per gallon without working too hard. See my Full Review of the Garmin Nuvi 680, and my Full Review of the Garmin Nuvi 780.

    TomTom PLUS with Gas Prices - Compatible right now with the TomTom GO 920/920T, the ability to pull in gas prices is only a low <$20 per year subscription away. The system goes through the Bluetooth connection to your COMPATIBLE bluetooth phone running on a data network. This will pull in data through your phone and populate the data into the TomTom to give you a bead on cheaper gas. After subscribing through you TomTom HOME computer application, you will select which grade of fuel (regular, mid, premium, or diesel) which will then show up in your Gas station POI search.

    Dash Express Connected GPS - This new generation GPS has a a cellular radio built in so it is connected to the network whenever you need it (and are in range of a cellular tower). A quick search for gas on the Dash allows you to pull up station by station listing and with the tap of the button, you can grab not only the "Regular" gas price as well as the prices on other grades.

    Finally, you can always get local cheap gas prices on MapQuest with their new gas pricing capability and MSN. Cool searches allow you to search around addresses, with the ability to search by price, distance and by name.

    How's it all work? No, there isn't someone riding around phoning in the latest gas prices.... A company called OpisNet scans the credit card transaction streams for fleet vehicles and watches for gas transactions, checking for gas prices and reporting them. These updates can come several times per day in the case of Dash (although any particular station might get updated less than that), to slightly less frequently for other manufacturers.


    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

    May 4, 2008

    GPS Steals and Deals - 5/4

    Best buys this week have to be the Nuvi 260W that dropped $50+ to $290, which is about right-priced for its capabilities. The Garmin Nuvi 200 is $139 at Office Depot after discounts and Mail In Rebate. Staples has a good low price for the Nuvi 200W - $199.


    Standard Screens - 3.5-inch

    • TomTom ONE - $144 and Free Shipping at Amazon; Entry Level TomTom with Maps of North America, no Text to Speech.

    • Garmin Nuvi 200 at Amazon - $151 No Text to Speech, Continental US Maps, solid interface and routing. Also at Office Depot for $139 after $50 Mail in Rebate. See My Full Review - Nuvi 200 for more info.

    • Garmin Nuvi 260 at Amazon - $208 Text to Speech, Maps of North America, solid interface. Same quality routing as Nuvi 200, just adds more maps and text to speech. At this point, I am recommending the Nuvi 260 with its updated interface, newer design and slightly lower price; for more see: Compare the Nuvi 260 vs. the Nuvi 350.

    • Nuvi 350 at Amazon $231; down this week - Still a top seller with North American Maps, and Text-to-Speech. Want Bluetooth? Get the Nuvi 360 that adds Bluetooth Handsfree, for $249.

    • Navigon 2100 - $129 at Staples - Entry level unit, at a pretty good price. See my Full Review of the Navigon 2100

    • Widescreen Models

    • Nuvi 200W at Amazon $206 - No Text to Speech, Continental US Maps. See My Full Review - Nuvi 200W. Also at Staples for $199.

    • Garmin Nuvi 260W - $295 at Amazon; down $50 this week, MUCH more Reasonable. Like I said last week, I think a good range is $290 - $299 range; getting there faster than I thought.

    • Nuvi 660 at Amazon $340; up again this week; still the best seller at Amazon - Text to Speech, North American Maps, TMC Traffic Capability included. See My Full Review - Nuvi 660


    • TomTom ONE XL S at Amazon $249 - Text to Speech, North American Maps, MapShare. I think the Text to Speech is worth the extra money, but if you don't need it, the TomTom ONE XL is only $227. Or $199 at BestBuy

    • Nuvi 750 - $371 at Amazon - New thin design with Text to Speech and Maps of North America. Route Optimization - plug in multiple stops and let the unit optimize the route for fastest planning.

    • Nuvi 760 - $426 at Amazon - Down a bit this week. New thin design with Text to Speech and Maps of North America. Route Optimization - plug in multiple stops and let the unit optimize the route for fastest planning, adds Bluetooth handsfree and built-in TMC traffic. See My Full Review of the Nuvi 760.

    • Garmin Nuvi 780 - $499; broke the $500 barrier - Has MSN Direct 2, with traffic and gas prices sent to your GPS. See My Full Review of the Nuvi 780 for more information.

      • Nuvi 5000 - The Big Bad Boy of GPS units with a 5.2" screen is on sale, and is only $559 at Amazon. Big screen and dead simple interface for solid usability and great navigation. Price continues to drop across the last few weeks. Best Buy has it for a mere $699 after $100 savings; ouch.

      It's Running Season and for many, it's time to hit the roads. I am starting to watch the prices on the Forerunners. Steady price these days.


      • Garmin Forerunner 405 is available for pre-order - the watch-like GPS enabled fitness device has a smaller design with all kinds of functionality, including wireless sharing. Probably won't deliver in time for the Boston Marathon tomorrow though...... Garmin is launching the Forerunner 405 at the Boston and why not, one of the best marathons in the world meets one of the coolest fitness devices. I like biking more than running, so, I tend to think the Edge 705 is cooler.... I took my first ride with it recently.

      • Forerunner 305 - $214 at Amazon - Heart Rate Monitor with wrist-mounted GPS Receiver, tracks distance and keeps your speed and pace. Syncs to computer for training records.
      • Forerunner 205 - $149 at Amazon - Wrist-mounted GPS Receiver, no Heart Rate Monitor. Tracks distance and keeps your speed and pace. Syncs to computer for training records.

        Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

    May 2, 2008

    Nuvifone - at AT&T Testing the $500 Price Point

    nuvifoneConcept.jpg

    Engadget had this story yesterday on Garmin testing Nuvifone ideas and potentially price points. Typically this type of concept testing is done far in advance by the maker of the product to test out features and designs, and yes price points. At this stage in the game, this concept is probably checking out the appeal of the carrier, the wireless features and the price point of the phone.

    The $500 price tag is not so outrageous now, but Apple, who is rumored to be putting real GPS capability into the next generation of the iPhone, is also working with AT&T. Now a recent BusinessWeek article speculated about AT&T dropping the price on the iPhone as a way to spur on demand in this sluggish economy. That $500 price point for the Nuvifone all of a sudden would be pretty expensive in comparison.

    Thanks Jim for sending this in.

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    May 1, 2008

    GPS Lodge Monthly Round-Up April 2008

    April saw some serious discounting hit the store shelves as GPS makers are getting ready for the summer driving season. New models have been announced, store shelves are getting stocked and with Tax Rebate checks in the mail, maybe people will be grabbing GPS units by the handful. If so, we are locking and loading on a bunch of reviews coming up so stay tuned.

    Garmin GPS News

    TomTom GPS News

    Magellan GPS News

    Mio GPS News

    Navigon GPS

    Earnings Announcements

    Fitness GPS

    GPS Rebates and Sales

    Mapping News

    Traffic News

    Scott Martin Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking
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