September 18, 2009

Magellan RoadMate 1700 - 7-inch Screen on this Biggie GPS

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Magellan has taken the high ground, launching this huge GPS - offering the folks in the back seat plenty of map details. I am wondering if you need to put sunscreen on to avoid a burn from this thing when it's on full brightness.

The 7-inch wonder offers you just about the whole stable of features that are on the Magellan brand - One Touch favorites menu for easy access to personalized favorite places, lane assist, highway Point of Interest search, spoken street names, as well as information from the AAA and Magellan partnership which offers the AAA TourBook information and special features that help you use your AAA Membership.

More Info at Magellan

Available at Amazon - Magellan RoadMate 1700   

List price will be $299. Full Press release below..... ArrowContinue reading: "Magellan RoadMate 1700 - 7-inch Screen on this Biggie GPS"

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 6, 2009

Magellan Announces RoadMate 1470, 1440, and 1340

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Magellan is shipping a new line of RoadMate units, starting with the 4.7-inch screened RoadMate 1470, to the 4.3-inch screened RoadMate 1440, and the standard size 3.5-inch screened 1340, all featuring the OneTouch interface that simplifies the entry and navigation selections of where you want to go.

The line features a lot of power in a slim package, with highway lane guidance, and highway signs giving you clear instructions when you encounter confusing highway interchanges.

Magellan continues with the AAA bundled information that gives you insight and reviews on locations including restaurants and lodging. the one feature that I have come to like is Highway Exit POI's - giving you a quick look at what's at the next exit, glad to see Magellan has this rolled in.

Currently available at Amazon:

Full Press Release follows......


ArrowContinue reading: "Magellan Announces RoadMate 1470, 1440, and 1340"

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January 15, 2009

Magellan Updates Triton Software


Just days after the acquisition closed for Mitac to buy Magellan, they have announced an upgrade to the Triton Software to improve accuracy, battery life and usability. Magellan has come under fire by users who were disappointed by their overall Triton experience and maybe this is a way to upgrade and eliminate those shortcomings as they strive to overcome a few sins of the past.

Full Press Release Follows.....

ArrowContinue reading: "Magellan Updates Triton Software"

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January 14, 2009

Mitac and Magellan Brands to Co-Exist in US After Takeover

Mitac owns Magellan - it's official, and they have announced that they will keep the Magellan and Mio brands separate in the US market. Clearly with the announcement of the new Mio S platform, Mio isn't messing around with low end stuff only anymore. The statement out of the press release (below) is intriguing:

"Following MiTAC International Corporation's now-final purchase of Magellan Navigation's Consumer Products Division, Mio Technology has announced a shift in strategy. The company will continue to deliver sleek, easy-to-use portable navigation devices, but also accelerate development of a variety of innovative GPS-based lifestyle products that extend the user experience well beyond traditional PNDs."

So, will both brands concentrate on similar automotive GPS units with distinct feature sets? Or will one brand be set-up as the automotive brand while the other will take on this GPS-based lifestyle product owner? It will be hard to offer the same hardware base with the same features and software under two brands - retailers don't want it and consumers will see through it.

Many of these acquisitions set the company up to have one brand a higher tier and one a lower tier. The one segmentation that I could see making sense is to start with a style based segmentation - Magellan - Bold, blocky and rugged, with traditional features, while the Mio is a sleek stylish and slightly upscale model with refined features. We'll see.

Press Releases Follow.....

ArrowContinue reading: "Mitac and Magellan Brands to Co-Exist in US After Takeover"

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December 15, 2008

Mio's Parent Buys Magellan - The Magella-Mio-Man?

Mio's parent company is collecting brands like skipping trading cards, and added the Magellan brand of GPS receivers to its pack of brands today. They already have the Mio brand, and the Navman brand, both a bit tarnished in the US market, but firmly a top player globally. This adds yet another chapter to the Magellan brand that once stood at nearly half the US market, an innovator that lost its way somewhere. Owned by Thales, and sold to Shah Capital group in 2006 for $170Mil. They have fought hard to maintain their #3 spot in the US, after the onslaught of Mitac's own brand Mio a few years ago when Mio exploded onto the US market only to lose their way too.

Mitac bought Navman almost two years ago, where they subsequently brought over the user interface and for their newest generation of Moov units.

So, what's next? Magellan has a relatively well known brand name in the US, but their units have been wanting for high quality execution lately - great features, troubling implementation. If nothing else, Mitac just bought extra sales and extra cash flow, bringing the volume and profit margins onto one balance sheet. My sense is that they will need to update the interface, and build unique looking Magellan units built around a core platform across all brands. Also, with Mio's expertise in mobile handsets, expect some connected Magella-Mio connected unit out as soon as they can lock down an interface.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

November 6, 2008

Magellan Maestro 4350 & 4370 Announced - Traffic, Improved Interface


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Magellan has announced a new unit at the high end of the line, the new Magellan Maestro 4350. It includes some pretty innovative features including a "One Touch" interface that allows you to get what you need in rapid fashion with a single click. The One Touch interface has you setting up various points of interest in a single location that you acces with a single tap. The Maestro 4350 carries forward the AAA TourBook data which is an expanded information set of specific POI locations such as hotels and restaurants. The Maestro 4350 also includes traffic alerts in a new interface, with several other improvements to the unit's interface to speed data entry and give a better overall look and feel.

The Maestro 4350 is available now with a list price of $499, but is already seen online at about $400.

The Maestro 4370 uses a high quality WVGA screen for even better looking maps and navigation. The Maestro 4370 will be available at BestBuy exclusively.

Full press release follows....

ArrowContinue reading: "Magellan Maestro 4350 & 4370 Announced - Traffic, Improved Interface"

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October 31, 2008

Magellan "Suspends" Development on Maestro 5340 Connected GPS

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Did you hear that? That was the sound of the high flying Connected GPS plane crashing back to earth. Magellan indicated through TWICE magazine that they are suspending development of the Maestro 5340 due to consumers' low appetite for high priced GPS navigation systems and the associated monthly fees that come with these units. This comes after a couple of delays in their launch that was originally planned for March.

"Although Magellan believes there is great promise in connected navigation, in the near term, consumers have shown an unwillingness to pay a steep price for PNDs, especially with the recent economic downturns," the company said. "We have suspended our development on this device and will re-examine the market potential when the climate changes."

The article at TWICE is focusing on the BestBuy Insignia CNV10 and CNV20 connected GPS units, and indicates that the BestBuy venture could serve to educate users on how a connected GPS can help them in their daily fight against traffic, etc. If other manufacturers are counting on BestBuy and the CNV10/CNV20 to drive the connected segment they had better hope that people see the value despite the early impressions that the unit is of low quality.

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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 at Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking
  • April 24, 2008

    Maestro 5340 Elite - Now Expected in July

    Maestro5340_Google_RT_Hi499x436.jpg

    For those of you who couldn't wait to sink $1200 into a super widescreen (5-inch), connected GPS from Magellan, well you are going to have to wait a while longer. The unit that was originally announced back at CES 208 in January and was slated for a Q1 2008 launch isn't happening (yea, no kidding, it's already Q2!!! I know). We now see some confirmation as Tiger GPS who has been taking pre-orders for the advanced unit, is now saying "MAGELLAN IS NOW PROJECTED TO RELEASE THIS PRODUCT IN JULY 2008".

    Should be interesting to see this hit the market, as they have teamed up with Google to provide search capabilities, and the unit will deliver some more sophisticated connectedness to provide better POI search, as well as traffic and gas prices. The unit will also have historical average speeds to make it a more complete traffic solution. Its Bluetooth handsfree capabilities comes with a dual microphone with noise canceling technology to help make for crisper conversations.

    Thanks Jim for sending this in.


    Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

    March 28, 2008

    GPS Review: Magellan RoadMate 1200

    magellanRoadMate1200.jpg

    Magellan continues to put out newly packaged units for the market, keeping the line updated with some pretty high end features like voice recognition on the new Maestro Elite 5340 Elite with GPRS mobile connectivity to give you live updates on traffic conditions and some limited connectivity to the internet while driving. So while the high end of the market is important for driving news and profitability with those higher profit units, a lot of people understand that the start of the GPS battle is waged on the entry level end of the market. Those battles are fought with deep discounts, specials where a $15 dollar difference can drive units off the shelf by the dozen. The issue is that with so many people coming into the GPS market, and buying an entry level unit for their first unit, you really need to lock them up with a great experience, so when they are destined to upgrade you keep them as loyal consumers, and they upgrade within your line. Ok; long story short, it appears the Magellan RoadMate 1200 falls short on the quality needed to get people to stay with the Magellan name, according to a recent review by CNet, where they thought the unit fell short in a few key areas.

    CNet saw that slow performance in a couple of areas really brought the experience and overall usability to a screeching halt. Slow at registering inputs had them waiting after screen taps so that they said they "Spent a lot of time looking at the hourglass", while some sluggishness in turn commands had then getting the command as they were passing the street they needed.

    The Magellan RoadMate 1200 is a standard screen unit, 3.5-inches, with maps of the US (48-state), and 1.3 million POI (A little on the short side for my tastes).

    ReadMore on the CNet Review of the Magellan RoadMate 1200

    At Amazon - The Magellan Roadmate 1200

    Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

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