Looks like Garmin is pulling the old switch-a-roo on TomTom. Two months after TomTom announced it's intent to acquire mapping provider Tele Atlas for $2.7 billion (and just 29 days after Nokia agreed to purchase mapping company NAVTEQ for $8.1 billion), Garmin has upped the ante and offered $3.3 billion for Tele Atlas. Garmin plans to launch the offer before December 4, 2007 (the scheduled expiry date of TomTom's offer).
I'm a huge fan of Panasonic's electronics. I use their video equipment, audio equipment and tons of other awesome Panasonic goodies. Well now I'm excited to hear that they are transforming their Strada in-dash GPS units into a portable device.
Panasonic announced today that they will be launching the Strada CN-GP50U which will sport a 5-inch touch panel display, Navteq maps of US, Canada, PR and Mexico, 1.8 million POIs, Bluetooth , and Voice Command for setting destinations without touching the screen.
If you still don't own a GPS unit, then you are truly a step behind. Tribes across the Amazon Basin have begun acquiring these portable navigation units and using them to map out their lands.
These tribes have begun mapping the 20 million acres of land that they traditionally charted by foot and canoe in order to avoid getting overran by developers, ranchers, loggers, miners, oilmen, and biopirates. Much of the help in this effort has come from the Amazon Conservation Team, a Virginia environmental and cultural preservation organization, which provided equipment, cartographic expertise, and financial assistance.
I absolutely love cars and one of the best things I love about cars is how fast the technology inside our cars is growing. The 2007 Tokyo auto show showed off some awesome technology advances. Honda and Volkswagen took that opportunity to showcase its latest-generation of navigation system.
While some older in-dash GPS units rely on slooooooow DVD-based systems, both Honda and Volkswagen are embracing the much faster hard drive-based approach.
Gamin is usually pretty solid on release dates, but it looks like the new Edge 605 and 705 have been delayed and won't be out in time for this year's holiday buying season. The new cycling units will include some nice features like a 2.2 inch color screens, built in base maps, and a new feature that lets other Edge users routes and other information wirelessly.
Garmin plans to release both new Edge models in Q1 2008. For more details on the Edge 705, check out GPSmagazine's Edge 705 hands-on preview.
We've already seen GPS tracking devices hidden in sneakers, dog collars, and even tracking beacons fired from a cannon. Now it seems a British clothing company by the name of Bladerunner has developed GPS-enabled jackets to locate those wandering kiddies.
"The jacket is not something that was released due to people losing their kids," said Adrian Davis, a partner at Bladerunner. "It was originally made for mountain climbers, skiers and snowboarders." However, Davis added that the company decided to make a children's version of the jacket aimed at parents concerned about their children's safety.
TomTom announced the ONE XL S last week. The Dutch firm's latest GPS is basically a ONE XL with text-to-speech (so it announces actual street names). For those of you with a short memory, the ONE XL was kind of a stinker, so it's unlikely that a ONE XL with TTS is going to be the GPS you've been waiting for. Still, if you're a TomTom fanboy, hit the jump to see all the gory specs.
Yet more proof that the elusive Dash Express connected GPS device is really happening, the device recently hit the FCC's leak-prone website for approval. Dash must be darn close to a final product for it to be already sent to the FCC. Let’s just hope it passes muster with the fine folks at the FCC, otherwise that could spell delays for the estimated Q1 2008 launch.
The San Francisco Chronicle recently ran an article questioning the future of paper maps, and asked GPS users what role, if any, maps play in their live. "I don't think paper maps are going anywhere, but people may be using them differently, more as a companion to the online or digital map."" said Joel Minster, chief cartographer for Rand McNally.