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GPS obsessed

29 August 2018

Rocky Mountain Tracking Smart Tracker…and the winner is…

winning 150x150 Rocky Mountain Tracking Smart Tracker...and the winner is...Our Rocky Mountain Tracking Smart Tracker GPS giveaway contest wrapped up yesterday afternoon and a big thanks to everyone that entered. It was fun reading all the comments and submissions-so many people don’t trust their teenagers! :) But enough blabbing. I know you all want to know who the winner is…Ken Wayne has been selected as our winner! I hope this makes up for the past 45 years of unlucky contest entries, Ken!

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Quick reads: Garmin nuvi 1860, Apisphere raises money, Ouidoo AR phone

Geomate.jr maker raises cash: Apisphere, maker of the Geomate.jr handheld geocaching device and location-based enterprise software has raised $4.6 million in funding.

Ouidoo augmented reality phone with GPS: A company called QderoPateo is attempting to make a mobile phone specifically for augmented reality called the Ouidoo. According to co-founder Steve Chao, the Ouidoo combines GPS, accelerometers and gyrometers to calculate location 10 times more accurately than GPS alone.

Garmin nuvi 1860 coming out in UK: This 4.8-inch GPS includes a web browser, Wi-Fi and a camera that can geotag pictures. Other features are typical though the price tag is a bit atypical in a market not so favorable to the PND-about £499 (US$800).

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VZ Navigator 5 shares your GPS location with Facebook

vz navigator facebook location VZ Navigator 5 shares your GPS location with Facebook

Techcrunch’s MG Siegler has the scoop on a new feature coming to Verizon’s VZ Navigator mobile navigation software tomorrow. Apparently VZ Navigator, which features turn-by-turn GPS directions, will be released in its fifth iteration tomorrow with the ability to share your location with Facebook.

Personally I don’t find this interesting, though it is useful for hardcore Facebook fans who don’t have too many options when it comes to sharing their lat/long locations with friends. Facebook doesn’t support location sharing natively at this time and other solutions such as Yahoo Fire Eagle and Nokia’s Lifecasting with Ovi really aren’t that streamlined from a usability perspective. So VZ Navigator’s Facebook location integration could be useful for a certain type of mobile user tied to Verizon Wireless.

With Google and Nokia both offering free navigation software that will include all these features for free one day, paying $9.99 per month for VZ Navigator 5 seems sort of silly to me. But then again, I live in Canada…

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Google aerial imagery hits 3 more US cities

aerial imagery Google aerial imagery hits 3 more US cities

Back in December, Google announced the launch of aerial imagery for 2 cities in the United States. The high-resolution imagery augments the satellite imagery of Google Earth and the street-level imagery of Street View, giving viewers a look at the ground as if they were flying in a helicopter or some other low-flying aircraft. Originally available only in San Jose and San Diego, both in California, aerial imagery is now also available for Sacramento and Oakland, California, as well as Portland, Oregon.

Travel company Orbitz and online real estate bigwigs Trulia and Redfin have all implemented the new imagery via the Google Maps API. Google Maps Mania also has a collection of mashups demonstrating usage case examples of aerial imagery.

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Free stuff: Rocky Mountain Tracking Smart Tracker GPS giveaway ($175 value)

smart tracker Free stuff: Rocky Mountain Tracking Smart Tracker GPS giveaway ($175 value)

Free stuff! Free stuff! And right here, no less. Fort Collins-based Rocky Mountain Tracking is looking to give away a Smart Tracker GPS device which enables the owner to track, in real-time via any PC, the location of his or her vehicle in the event of a theft.

Smart Tracker GPS utilizes a simple box design and I believe fits into your dashboard-out of sight and out of mind. After a simple two-wire install and set up it’s ready to go. And while you’ll have to purchase a low-cost data plan, it’s only required for a certain number of GPS lookups thus only requiring payment when the Smart Tracker is being used.

If you were to buy the Smart Tracker you’d be paying $175 for the device and a minimum of $4.95 for a 24 hour usage time. So this is a great giveaway and quite generous on the part of Rocky Mountain Tracking.

If you want a chance at winning, just leave a comment telling us why you should be the winner and an email to [email protected] so I can contact you if you win. The contest is open until next Saturday at 12:00 PM CST after which we’ll draw a name from the commenters. Rocky Mountain Tracking will ship the prize directly to the winner (unfortunately Smart Tracker only works in the United States so the contest isn’t open to those outside of the country)! Game on!

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Garmin nuvi 1490TV adds soaps and sports to GPS

garmin nuvi 1490t Garmin nuvi 1490TV adds soaps and sports to GPS

Garmin has announced the nuvi 1490TV GPS navigator, geared for the European market. The 5-inch GPS includes all the usual PND features including pre-loaded European maps, free traffic updates, safety camera warnings, Bluetooth compatibility, 2 million POIs, Garmin’s “Where I Am?” feature that plots your location in respect to hospitals, police stations and other safety-oriented institutions. The nuvi 1490TV also includes voice-guided, turn-by-turn directions with spoken street names and automatic re-routing in case of a missed turn.Garmin nuvi 1490TV.

The most important feature in the case of the nuvi 1490TV, however, is the inclusion of a DVB-T mobile TV receiver. With the DVB-T receiver, the nuvi 1490TV can receive freeview digital TV and radio content from over 14 countries around Europe. In the UK alone it can pick up over 50 digital TV channels including the BBC and SKY. As an added safety precaution, the mobile TV feature only works when the vehicle isn’t in motion.

Coming in early April 2010, the Garmin nuvi 1490T will cost the equivalent of US$420.

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Garmin finally launches iPhone app (for pilots)

pilot my cast 300x104 Garmin finally launches iPhone app (for pilots)Garmin’s first iPhone application, dubbed Pilot My-Cast, is finally available from the iTunes App Store. Originally announced in August of 2009, and with a target availability date of September 2009, Pilot My-Cast never did appear. But now available and created by Garmin subsidiary Digital Cyclone, Pilot My-Cast is feature-rich and likely one of the best iPhone and iPod Touch apps for pilots. It includes:

  • Routes: users can create routes to any airport, fix or VOR in Canada or the United States. Routes can be viewed on a map with a weather overlay.
  • Flight plan: pilots can create flight plans and send them to DUAT providers directly form the iPhone.
  • Weather: users can view current and future weather in a variety of formats.
  • Airport information: access the AOPA Airport Directory from within the app.
  • Settings: customize Pilot My-Cast specifically for each pilots aircraft and flight information.

Pilot My-Cast is currently available from the iTunes App Store for a monthly fee of $9.99 or a $99.99 annual subscription.

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Foursquare for Blackberry now available

badges blackberry foursquare Foursquare for Blackberry now available

As an avid Blackberry user I’m absolutely thrilled that Foursquare finally released a dedicated Blackberry client today for all 8000 and 9000 models. The application has all of the functionality of the iPhone and Android app, including its signature sauce the “check-in”. According to some beta testers the Blackberry app is a little buggy when it comes to location sensing, but that’s most likely a Blackberry problem I would think. Tomorrow I’m finally updating my Curve 8330 which doesn’t really work anymore so I’m excited to give it a try over the weekend. Of course I live in Winnipeg, Canada-not exactly early adopter central-so we’ll see what happens.


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Garmin to ship 4-5 cellphones in 2010

garminasus nuviphone m20 150x150 Garmin to ship 4 5 cellphones in 2010The Garmin-Asus partnership will result in the unveiling of an Android-powered mobile phone at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain (could this be the T-Mobile phone?). This according to Benson Lin, president of Asustek’s handheld device unit. He also added the Garmin-Asus plans to ship 4-5 Android or Windows Mobile phones in 2010 (hopefully 1 million units sold when all is said and done), one of which will be the M10.

The M10 is said to be a Windows Mobile 6.5.3-based handset, powered by Qualcomm’s 600 MHz 7224 processor and featuring a 3.5-inch WVGA resistive touchscreen, GPS and a 5 megapixel camera. The M10 will hit Taiwan initially for the equivalent of $434.40 in the United States. The partnership will also produce a TD-SCDMA phone for China Mobile that is supposed to ship in the 4th quarter of 2010.

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Nokia announced free Ovi Maps navigation with traffic reports

nokia nav Nokia announced free Ovi Maps navigation with traffic reports
Nokia plans to dominate the world of GPS navigation as the company announced this morning an update to Ovi Maps that will enable consumers to access free car and pedestrian navigation features from any Nokia smartphone.
The new Ovi Maps navigation feature will provide turn-by-turn voice guidance for 74 countries in 46 languages. Traffic information will also be free of charge for 10 countries initially, as will access to Lonely Planet and Michelin travel guides.
This move should not be taken lightly by the PND industry. Nokia acquired digital mapping data provider NAVTEQ specifically to target the navigation industry. With the move to GPS navigation from the smartphone as opposed to the dashboard-mounted PND, Nokia’s mobile market share combined with the free cost of Ovi Maps navigation make it a definite threat.
Mobile app developers that are part of the Ovi for developers beta programme will be the first to access the new Ovi Maps data from which they can create new apps. According to a press release this morning, developers can also receive updates about the Navigation Player API and its commercial availability through the Forum Nokia. Consumers can download the updated Ovi Maps here.

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