Mio GPS News

October 31, 2010

Mio Moov R403


No, Mio has not disappeared, they acquired Magellan and kept their own line of navigators. The Mio Moov R403 is a wide-screened unit (4.3-inch) unit that offers a lot of value in a Mio package. The unit offers Text to speech - it says street names, lane guidance to help you when choosing which lane to be in for that confusing highway interchange, and maps of the US + Puerto Rico. The 4 million Points of interest is a little light compared to other brands on the market.

More at Mio Moov R403 (Product Webpage at Mio)

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

May 13, 2009

Mio S401 and S501 GPS - Big Screens and Slim Look


Mio is announcing their S401 and S501 GPS units for the US today, that bring a light, slim look to the market and a super sized 4.7-inch screen in the S501 that will certainly offer easier viewing and data input while on your way. As GPS units and LCD screens come down in price, I would expect to see more of the 4.7-inch screens and larger making their way to the market to help make the experience better for those who could use the extra real estate.

Mio is working on making search better here too; shown above, you can touch on an area on the map and you will see what Points of Interest (POI) are in the surrounding areas. Also, they are offering key word search for POI targeting the shortcomings of searching for a POI by title only.

The Mio S401 will list for $179 and the Mio S501 will list for $199; both will be available in June.

Full press release follows......

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

April 5, 2009

Mio - Dead in the US

UPDATE: I just heard from Mio clarifying that they are not walking away from the US market with the Mio brand. They appear to be getting into select channels with new modesl coming in May. they said:
"In response to the article published in GPS Business News entitled "Mio closing business in the US" on April 3, 2009, Mio announced that the company will continue the sales in the North American market. Mio will offer products in selected channels and launch new products in May. Mio emphasize that the company will also continue to deliver sleek, easy-to-use portable navigation devices to the market, and also accelerate the development of a variety of innovative GPS-based lifestyle products that extend the user experience well beyond traditional PNDs."

According to GPS Business News, Mio has shut its doors on the US operation, a victim of the economy and a series of misses with consumers for their recent releases. We've come a long way from the launch and great success of the Mio 310X that was a hit on Black Friday 2006. Mitac, Mio's parent swallowed up a pioneer in the business, Magellan, and I would imagine that they will innovate through that brand in the US market.

No Need for Mio

The prices on GPS units have fallen so much in the last 2 years, that there is no room for a lower priced brand under the big names. When Garmin and TomTom had their units at $350, a 15% savings was meaningful and worth the trade-off. With prices over the holiday period at $99, there was hardly room for a value play underneath them. Mio has taken an innovation track lately, offering bigger, better features instead of stripped down market entry only units. They will need this strategy to survive.

Mio is still a large global player, and I would assume, their parent company, Mitac a large contract manufacturer of GPS units for other brands. I am confident that we'll see Mitac stay in the US market if the economy comes back, but in what form I don't know. With new competition from other strong players like Navigon, they'd better not let Magellan slip too far.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

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.....

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

January 8, 2009

Mio Announced Mio Moov S300, S500, S556, S700 and a New Interface for US


Mio is re-doing the line of GPS navigators and it sounds like they have a pretty intriguing line-up, definitely upping the ante on the GPS game, as they are running a new interface too, dubbed the "Mio Spirit". The operating system and new interface has been in development for over 2 years, and includes a lot of shortcuts and capabilities to make navigating the device a lot easier. The new Mio units will be powered by TeleAtlas maps. Of note, the Moov S300 starts with 12 Million POI!; and the Moov S700 is a 7-inch display. The four new units are:

  • Mio Moov S300 - features a 3.5 inch display, preloaded with maps of the U.S. and Canada. It has Text-to-Speech voice direction in English, Spanish and French and more than 12 million points of interest.

  • Mio Moov S500 - a 4.7-inch model with all the functionality of the S300.

  • Mio Moov S556 (shown above) - a premium model with a stylish, ultra-flat 4.7-inch display. It includes the aforementioned functionality with the addition of Bluetooth® for hands-free calling and "Junction View," a feature that aids motorists in complex traffic intersections.

  • Mio Moov S700 - has a mammoth 7-inch display and is perfect for RV's and campers. It also includes MAD Maps content for travelers who are looking for preloaded scenic routes and a unique journey. The device includes features such as preloaded maps of the U.S. and Canada, Text-to-Speech in English, Spanish and French, and more than 12 million points of interest.

The line goes along with Mio's strategy of attacking the low and and the high end of the market with a more complete offering. Smart move if they can compete up there with their product line. It will be interesting to see how they handle the Magellan branding on items since their purchase of the company.


Press Releases below......

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

December 30, 2008

Mio Launches GPS Blog - Miobuzz

Mio has launched the Miobuzz right ahead of CES 2009, the GPS blog that will enlighten us to the ways of the Mio. It promises to be another outlet for all things Mio, giving us inside information along with a little marketing mixed in. Garmin and TomTom have these and they seem to be good sources of information about map sales, tips on GPS use, and information on little-known features or capabilities. The Miobuzz blog appears to be a little irreverent with its design and avatar look and feel. Should be fun to see it develop.

at Miobuzz

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

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

December 3, 2008

Mio Deals at Radio Shack - Today Only

Looks like Radio Shack needs to move some inventory. These Mio units were part of the Black Friday race for GPS sales, and are again in the news. The deals are only good today.

  • Save $110 on The Mio Moov 500 PLUS Get a $29.99 Case for $9.99 and Get Free Shipping - 12.3.08 ONLY! - The Mio Moov 500 is a very widescreen (4.7-inch) unit with an extra large real estate for easier viewing. Mio price of $139.

  • Save $80 on The Mio Moov 300 PLUS Get a $19.99 Case for $9.99 and Get Free Shipping - 12.3.08 ONLY! - The Mio Moov 300 is a standard widescreen with text to speech capabilities. Mio Price of $119

    For more information on the new Mio's see my Full Review of the Mio 300.

    Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking
  • October 11, 2008

    Deal Alert - Mio Moov 200 - $99 At Staples


    Starting tomorrow Staples will be selling the entry level Mio Moov 200 for $99 after instant rebate and a mail in rebate. Pretty good price point for a basic GPS, one that I think we will continue to see more of as we get closer to Black Friday and the extended holiday shopping season.

    The Mio Moov 200 is a basic GPS with turn by turn directions, standard 3.5-inch screen, maps of the US, but also has text to speech - says street names, and comes loaded with 3.5 million Points of Interest - a good middle of the range number

    For an idea of how the Mio Moov 200 will work, check out my full review of the widescreen version the Mio Moov 300.

    Deal starts tomorrow and runs through 10/18 at Staples

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

    October 6, 2008

    Mio Moov 380 Connected GPS On the Market (In Taiwan)

    Mio's connected GPS, the Mio Moov 380 is being reported by Taiwan Times that it is now available (in Taiwan) for purchase. Mio has been talking about since earlier this year. The connected GPS gets its information over the cellular network allowing it to get better traffic information via typical traffic data feeds and peer to peer networking. through bigger bandwidth connections. More bandwidth = more data = better informed drivers (we hope).

    According to the Taiwan Times, "The development of wireless networking has enabled Mio to integrate wireless communication and real time transmission technology into its GPS, enabled car electronics products allowing them to offer six kinds of location-oriented services: on the go safety, positioning, navigation, tracing & management, commercial and leisure entertainment services, generating new business opportunities for car electronics products.

    Wang of MiTAC states, "By adopting networking technologies, Mio enables in-car devices to offer more services than traditional car GPS systems. From real time traffic message navigation to the latest entertainment information, it enables in-car GPS's to navigate smarter, and also enrich the lives of our consumers.""

    Wonder when this might hit the US? Stay tuned.

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

    September 30, 2008

    The (Fun) History of the Mio GPS

    Here's a tongue in cheek look at the history of the Mio GPS. And while the GPS system has a long history, and its civilian use was initiated by Ronald Reagan, apparently according to this video, there were Mio GPS units long before that. Good for a chuckle, thanks to John for sending this one in.

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

    August 28, 2008

    Replacement/Aftermarket Mounts for Mio Moov 200 and Mio Moov 300 Series


    Arkon has announced that they now have replacement mounts for the new Mio Moov 200 and Mio Moov 300 series. All of the mount bundles include a custom cradle adapter and a location specific pedestal for use in the car. Arkon has an amazing array of aftermarket mounts that allow you a lot of flexibility in placement of your GPS. Users can choose from a variety of different mounts that attach to the windshield, dash, cup holder opening, lighter socket, sun visor, and air vent locations.

    Check out replacement mounts for the Mio Moov 200 and Mio Moov 300 series at Arkon.

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

    July 8, 2008

    Mio Knight Rider GPS Launched


    Mio has officially let the Knight Rider GPS out of the bag and it should be hitting stores later this quarter for a list of $269; news came out last month on it. The Wide screen unit will have the red lights and the classic voice of KITT from the famous show of the 80's. The unit will also speak your name when it starts and will guide you on your way to fight crime and buy milk too. The unit will run the new software that is on the Mio Moov 300 series. See my Full Review of the Mio Moov 300/310 for more information.

    Full Press Release Follows......

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

    June 26, 2008

    Mio Launches Mio Moov 380 - Connected GPS

    Mio has launched their connected GPS that they have been talking about since earlier this year. The new unit will feature connectivity through Qualcomm, and offer 2.75G - 3G speeds; not bad for a little GPS.

    The Mio Moov 380 will be SIM card based, which seems like a logical way to go. The TomTom HD connected devices are moving this way too. No news on subscription prices on the connected Mio Moov, but I would hope that coming from Mio it would be a reasonable price.

    If it comes later this year, it would join the Dash Express, the once delayed Magellan 5340+GPRS, and maybe if we are lucky the TomTom HD on this side of the pond. The Half Navigator, Half phone - Nuvifone should also be out by the holiday season.

    More Press Info follows...

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

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