You may have noticed that last Friday was a busy day here at GPS Tracklog, as we reported on a dozen new units from Garmin, Magellan and TomTom. These manufacturers used Berlin’s IFA consumer electronics show as a chance to announce a fall 2007 lineup, ahead of the holiday shopping season. Now that the dust has settled, let’s look at some details that escaped notice Friday, and take a quick look at market niches and innovations as well.
Nuvi 700 series to include tracklogs and MSN Direct option
While I reported that the nuvi 700 series specs include multi-destination routing, I should have read the product description more closely. Under "plan ahead" it states "a trip log provides an electronic bread crumb trail of up to 10,000 points, so you can see where you’ve been on the map." A little further down it cites MSN® Direct as an option. One other note — they tackle the traveling salesman problem — the nuvi 700 series "automatically sorts multiple destinations to provide an efficient route for errands, deliveries or sales calls."
Innovation (or the lack thereof)
Just a few brief points here:
- Garmin continues to play it safe and lag in innovation. Nuvis finally get what every other navigator on the market has —
multi-destination routing. And you have to go top of the line for that!
- I will give them credit for wireless communication in the new Edge series. Hopefully we’ll see this in the next round of GPSMAP 60/76 units.
- TomTom has taken on the nuvi x70 models with their TomTom GO 920, offering pre-loaded maps for both sides of the pond. And voice recognition too! Let’s hope it works better than the Magellan Maestro 4050. TomTom also added Map Share in the TomTom ONE 3rd edition.
- With every one else going transaltlantic, Magellan looked for a market niche south of the border, offering the Maestro 3220 and 4220 with preloaded maps of the U.S., Canada and Mexico.
- Mio becomes the first PND manufacturer to jump on 3-D with the Mio C620. In my book, they win the innovation prize this round. How well they implement it, we’ll just have to wait and see.