Sunday, March 18, 2012

Are GPS Voice Commands worth the time?

Auto GPS buyers guide

There are some features that are absolutely essential for GPS units, like lifetime map updates and lane junction views. But what about voice commands? Back when they were first introduced I can’t say that I was a huge fan as they were incredibly touchy. The mic couldn’t pick up voices with the AC going or music playing and don’t even think about having the window open. And even then, I felt like I was constantly shouting at my GPS.

Of course, technology has really advanced quite a bit since the early 2000s, and even my phone has a pretty decent voice recognition program now. So, what about GPS? Is voice command worth the time? We’ll take a look at the pros and cons, and then you can tell us your thoughts! read more

Garmin Introduces GPS Dash Cam for Truckers


In April, Garmin introduced its first ever dash cam/GPS unit combination aimed to help drivers not only find their way, but protect their vehicles via video recording of incidents. Well, it looks like the GPS giant has reset its sights on a group that spends even more time on the road than most: truckers. The dezlCam LMTHD is a trucker-specific GPS device that not only includes a built-in dash cam and lifetime maps and traffic, but also a slew of features designed to display information that truckers need most. read more

Auto GPS Features You Can’t Live Without


Based on the feedback and comments I’ve seen on this site, automotive GPS is still the most common type of GPS that you guys use. I can’t say I blame you; smartphones are a hassle in the car, and while paper maps are awesome, trying to fold those suckers while behind a wheel is a feat worthy of song.

However, it seems like there are even more GPS features and options to pick from than ever before. I know in the past we’ve done articles on GPS features you shouldn’t bother with and ones you should, but those are all a little old now, and features are constantly being added. read more

Give Mom the Gift of a Girly GPS



As a girl, I can say with authority that GPS units, from a style perspective, are pretty boring looking. They’re often all gray or black and the user interface, while functional, has a distinct lack of fun colors like pink. So, if you’re looking for something neat to do for your mom (or any woman in your life) then why not download a fun pink car to show her the way?

Here are some free Garmin vehicles you can download for Mother’s Day: read more

New TomTom GO Devices Offer Lifetime World Maps


While having all of the extra bells and whistles on your GPS device is important, I have always said that if you have to pick just one thing, pick lifetime maps. A lot of people don’t’ realize that your GPS is really only as good as your maps, and the ability to update maps without an additional fee is really worth the extra money and will greatly improve the life, value and usability of your device.

Generally, devices come with lifetime maps for only the specific continent or region in which you live. Well, now TomTom has gone a step further. The newest TomTom GO devices will all include lifetime world maps, meaning that users will not have to pay an additional fee to access TomTom’s excellent maps of other countries and continents. I am fairly sure that this is an industry first, as I’ve not seen any such capabilities from the other main GPS companies, although no doubt they will soon follow. read more

Garmin Introduces Dashcam GPS Device

garmin nuvicam lmthd

Garmin announced a new GPS device late last week which combines a dedicated navigation system with a dash cam and advanced alerts to make the first unit designed to protect users in the case of an accident. Dash cams have become more and more popular in recent years, providing an unbiased eyewitness of events along with date and time.

The nuviCam LMTHD boasts a continuously recording dash cam device on the back and a driver-facing display with Garmin navigation favorites including Active Lane Guidance, Up Head to provide upcoming services and POIs, Garmin Real directions, photoReal Junction View, Bird’s Eye Junction View, preloaded Foursquare data and various speed limit and school zone warnings. read more

Magellan Launches New GPS Through Costco


The California-based GPS navigation company Magellan has announced a new automotive GPS device today on sale exclusively through Costco stores nationwide. Called the Roadmate 5250T-LM, this 5 inch GPS device has a full line of features including lifetime map updates and traffic alerts and also comes with a limited trial of PhantomALERT Premium.

Priced at a modest $149, this device looks like it’s actually a pretty good deal. All units purchased will come with three years of the PhantomALERT Premium feature, which offers audible and visual warnings of upcoming red lights, speed cameras and more. Once the three-year subscription is up, users can continue the service for $50 per year. The unit supports both landscape and portrait mode to show more or less of the road ahead and to better adapt to user preferences. It has Magellan’s OneTouch Favorites Menu so that users can quickly access locations they frequent. read more

Voice-Controlled GPS Helmet Coming Soon

Basic RGB

Reuters reported yesterday that a Russian company has invented a new smart helmet that will display GPS navigation tips on the visor so motorcyclists can use navigational technology without having to look away from the road. Only slightly bigger than a regular motorcycle helmet, the visor will have something similar to a HUD display. Originally slated to be released last year, the helmet is still in the pre production stages and expected to go on sale this summer. read more

TomTom Creates GPS for Motorcycles

tomtom rider img

Riding a motorcycle isn’t the same as driving a car, so why would you want the same kind of GPS and routes? TomTom, the Dutch-based navigation company has announced the upcoming release of a new GPS unit designed specifically with motorcyclists in mind. Called the TomTom RIDER, this GPS unit will help bikers find the perfect route.

The glove-friendly, interactive screen features TomTom’s expansive mapping software with exciting new routing features that allow bikers to choose the level of twists and turns they want to create their own adrenaline-filled road adventure. And, once the perfect route is found, you can even upload and share share it with other bikers. read more

2015 Nuvi Essentials Boast New Budget Features

The Garmin 2015 Nuvi Essential Series is the first budget-friendly line that supports a backup camera

The Garmin 2015 Nuvi Essential Series is the first budget-friendly line that supports a backup camera

Garmin announced the details of its 2015 Nuvi Essentials series at the International Consumer Electronics Show going on this week. This year’s entry-level devices include several features that have never been available to the lower-end markets before, along with other Garmin essentials like lane assist, junction view, street name, speed limit, arrival time estimates, Up Ahead (to show nearby services) and more.

The new features that normally only are available to the more expensive devices include Garmin Real Directions, which provides actual landmarks, buildings and stop lights as references for easy-to-follow directions; millions of preloaded POIs from Foursquare along with the ability to search new and popular destinations, and the most talked-about feature, support for backup cameras like the BC 30 backup camera, which is available for $169.99. read more