Did hydrogen cars just blow up? GM's closer to unloading Saturn, but also to keeping part of it. One less GPS nav brand to contend with. And, we get a lot of stares in this week's test car.Listen now: Download today's podcast SHOW NOTES
We speculate even more on the rumored large format Kindle, and get the announcement date wrong right from the start. What, we're supposed to read press releases? Also on the rumor front, we discuss Apple's interest in buying Twitter and Electronic Arts. Somethings just not sitting right about this one.Listen now: Download today's podcast EPISODE 967
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Not too long ago, we were getting excited about getting our hands on Navigon's three upcoming GPS devices. However, this morning we receive news that the German manufacturer of portable navigation devices is withdrawing from the North American market. We were so close!
Citing "difficult economic environment and the aggressive pricing," CEO Egon Minar announced this morning that Navigon is downsizing its Chicago office and stepping out of the American market.
What this essentially means is that Navigon just can't compete in the TomTom/Garmin price war that has resulted in sub-$100 devices that American … Read more
Tom's in Malta looking for the Maltese Falcon (if he drinks enough, he'll see it.) Meanwhile, Cooley, BT, and Donald Bell carry on.
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Q: I am writing to ask you about what GPS device is the best for someone interested in traffic updates (preferably free), as well as Bluetooth capability. I also like the idea of Lane Assist because I fear missing exits. Also, is the voice response option really a practical one at this phase? Hope to hear from you soon. --Alex via e-mail
A: Hi Alex. I'll start with your last question first. Voice command functionality is just starting to show up in portable navigation devices, letting you enter addresses and perform some other tasks simply by speaking to the GPS. As with any new technology, I can understand your apprehension. Is it good enough? Is it actually useful? In other words, is it ready for prime time?
In the case of voice commands and GPS, it's not quite there yet. The idea behind it is good. The ability to enter addresses and perform certain functions with the sound of your voice would seemingly save you the time and trouble of going through various menus and tapping onscreen buttons to achieve the same goal.
Being able to do things like increase system volume and zoom in on maps via voice commands is particularly useful since you can keep your hands on the wheel instead of reaching over to fiddle around with your PND's touch screen.
However, in practice, the technology still needs some work. Voice command functionality is available on a handful of GPS models, such as the TomTom GO 930 and the Magellan Maestro 4250, but of the current offerings, there are only two models where I'd consider the voice command feature satisfactory: the Garmin Nuvi 880 and Navigon 7200T.
These two systems returned fairly accurate results when dictating addresses, and the Nuvi 800 had the bonus of offering 30 voice commands to perform other functions, including volume control and activating the hands-free speaker system. Unfortunately, they're also on the pricier side ($700 to $1,000 for the Garmin and $300 to $500 for the Navigon), and I wouldn't say the voice command functionality is so great that it's worth the extra expense. … Read more
Navigon on Monday introduced three portable navigation devices: the Navigon 3300 Max, the Navigon 4300T, and the Navigon 7300T. The trio also includes a new feature called Navigon MyRoutes, which aims to provide personalized route recommendations based on your driving habits.
MyRoutes works by recording and analyzing your driving habits, along with other data, such as day of the week and time of travel, to come up with the best route based on that information. The feature will provide up to three route recommendations, and gives you the distance and estimated time of arrival to your destination, also taking traffic, … Read more
Your car may not answer when you talk to it, but we've got four GPS devices that will. The latest, cutting-edge GPS devices not only guide you to destinations and show you traffic conditions, but also respond to voice commands. You can fit your car out like the Knight Industries Two Thousand with one of these devices. They'll help you get where you're going, but they won't make your car bulletproof.
CNET's Bonnie Cha gives the Navigon 7200T GPS device a thorough review, finding many advanced features and an affordable price. Along with voice command, text-to-speech, pedestrian and bicycle modes, the 7200T offers free traffic reporting. But she isn't as impressed with the device's user interface. Check out the review to see the 7200T's final rating.
On Monday, Navigon introduced its most ambitious portable navigation device (PND) to date, the Navigon 8100T. The highlight of the device is something called Panorama View 3D, which brings a "true 3D" map experience.
Basically, the system uses NASA terrain data and provides digital elevations, so you'll see surrounding landscapes like rolling hills and so forth. While we've seen 3D building renderings in other GPS before (a la HP iPaq 310 Travel Companion) as well as 3D views of complicated intersections, the 8100T is the first to offer a full 3D view of your surrounding environment, … Read more
We've reviewed several of Navigon's portable navigation devices, and it always seems to be the same story: great features, affordable price, but always coming up short in performance. The company's latest entry-level model, the Navigon 2000S, is another chapter in that saga, though it comes closer to a happy ending than previous models.
The 2000S offers advanced navigation features, such as text-to-speech functionality and photo-realistic street views--all for a bargain price of $199.99. We were also encouraged by the general responsiveness of the in-car GPS, as it felt snappier for tasks like searching points of interest … Read more