Sunday, March 18, 2012

Mio Moov M300 and M400 – Black Friday specials?


UPDATE: Okay commenters, you’re right, it’s not the iGO interface, but it does appear to be the Navman interface, and not the Spirit. I stand by my Black Friday prediction though!

Mio just can’t seem to make up their mind. When we last heard from them they were touting the Spirit interface on their S-series units. I never got to play with one for more than a few minutes, but it seemed pretty clunky to me.

Well this morning we learned about two new models, the Moov M300 and M400 (pictured above), which appear to use their old iGO interface. But wait; Nav N Go, creator of iGO, suspended their relationship with Mio early last year due to “breach of contract.” Further confusing matters is Mio’s lack of retail presence in the U.S., which is pretty much confined to Radio Shack at this point.

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MiTAC completes purchase of Magellan

MiTAC has announced the completion of their purchase of Magellan’s consumer products division, and revealed some insights into their strategy and future plans:

  • The Mio and Magellan product lines will coexist in the U.S., though they will share technological expertise
  • Mio will add new “GPS-based lifestyle products” to their line, so maybe we’ll soon see their Mobile Internet Device that was on display at CES

UPDATE: TWICE is reporting that this or a similar device (they are calling it a UMPC ) will hit the market this fall at around $299.

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GPS predictions for 2009

Crystal ball

Disclaimer: These are predictions and nothing more, so keep your sense of humor and please don’t sue me.

Auto GPS predictions

  • A nuvi 8×5 series will bring lane assist and voice recognition together in one unit
  • Garmin discontinues the nuvi 200 series; all Garmin nuvi models will now have text-to-speech
  • Crowdsourced HD traffic comes to the US with the stateside introduction of the TomTom GO LIVE series
  • TomTom releases a GPS receiver that utilizes alternative positioning information for improved accuracy in urban canyons
  • More manufacturers display multiple route options visually, ala Dash and Insignia
  • Navigon folds, caught between Nextar on the low end and MiTAC’s aggressive promotion of the Magellan line
  • Red light camera alerts will move closer to the mainstream
  • More downward feature creep — expect to see Lane Assist on some mid-range Garmins, more units with lifetime traffic, larger screens, etc.
  • Garmin announces a desktop application (possibly a
    revamped MapSource) that allows planning routes with POIs and
    transferring them to Garmin units with current City Navigator maps; it
    will be set up to allow users to opt into sharing anonymized tracklogs
    ala TomTom HOME
  • Said application will support wireless transfer of data via ANT or Bluetooth

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Navigating thru a winter wonderland

Confusing signs in snow

There's a confusing enough array of GPS units on the market, but around the holidays the major manufacturers start throwing out units you've never heard of and have never seen reviewed. Some are exclusive to one retailer, while others are bargain-basement stripped down devices. Here's what the major manufacturers have on tap for the holidays this year…

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Knight Rider GPS by Mio review


UPDATE: This model has been discontinued. For current recommendations, please refer to our auto GPS buyers guide or check out our other Mio GPS reviews.

The Mio Knight Rider has gotten a lot of coverage for its hip factor, though I assume its appeal is limited to fans of the 80’s TV show Knight Rider. Mio may also attract a new generation of fans with this device, thanks to the new NBC series remake of the same name. But hey, we’re not here to discuss TV, David Hasselhoff or muscle cars. So let’s get straight to the GPS review…

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Mio Moov 200 review


The Mio Moov 200 is the entry level model in Mio’s new Moov series. The Mio Moov 200 has a 3.5” touch screen, comes with over 3.5 million points of interest (POIs), and has text-to-speech, so you’ll get “turn left on Oak Street in 200 feet”, rather than just “turn left in 200 feet.”

Stepping up to the Mio Moov 210 gets you a one-year live traffic subscription, delivered via the Traffic Message Channel (TMC). The 300 and 310 models offer the same features as the 200 and 210, albeit with a wider, 4.3” touch screen.

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Mio Moov 310 review


I’ve been testing the Mio Moov 310 recently, one of the first four models in the new Moov series just introduced by Mio. This product line has a completely new interface, created thanks to Mio’s purchase of Navman. As a result, I will go into the interface in some detail in this review. First though, let’s look at  what distinguishes these four models from each other.

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Mio C720t review


UPDATE: This model has been discontinued. For current recommendations, please refer to our auto GPS buyers guide or check out our other Mio GPS reviews.

I’ve spent the last few weeks trying out the Mio C720t, a new high-end GPS navigation device from Mio. Like the Mio C520, the C720t is equipped with a 4.3″ touchscreen, text-to-speech, Bluetooth for hands free cell phone use, and the SiRFstar III chipset. The C720t adds to this feature set with live traffic info, an integrated 2 MP camera, and photo geotagging. You can use this feature to navigate to locations you’ve taken a picture of.

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Mio POI loader

Mio has posted a Mio POI loader that allows you to transfer .csv or .xls POI files to an SD card and have them show up under My POI on your Mio device.

The POI loader may work with newer devices beyond those listed. I’m currently testing a Mio C720t and it worked fine with it.

I’m adding a link to this on my custom POI resource page, where you can find lots of POI sources to use with your GPS.

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Mio C230 review


UPDATE: This model has been discontinued. For current recommendations, please refer to our auto GPS buyers guide or check out our other Mio GPS reviews.

I’ve been trying out the Mio C230 for the past week or so. Also know as the Mio DigiWalker C230, this unit updates the C220, adding one thing most low-end units don’t have — text to speech. This means that you’ll get “turn left on Oak Street in 200 feet” rather than just “turn left in 200 feet.” It also offers a much brighter screen than that of the C220, along with pre-loaded maps of all 50 states and Puerto Rico.

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