Last week we went to a very nice old fashioned members’ club, Mortons in Mayfair. As well as eating several nice danish pastries we also checked out Navman’s latest range of GPS systems (it’s not that we’ve been lazy in reporting the event, it’s just that we had to sign one of those confounded NDAs for some reason).
Anyway the big news is that Navman has come up with a pretty cool feature for its latest 700 series products (the iCN720 and iCN750) which lets you take pictures of places on a built in camera and store their geographical (latitude and longitude) details. Called NavPix, it means, for example, you could take a picture of, say, a pub you fancied going into and its co-ordinates and image would automatically be stored in your GPS system for next time – handy if you were too much the worse for wear when you saw it the first time!
OK as a feature it’s not going to change the course of history, but it’s a nice example of how the technology is developing to become more user-friendly and interactive. Navman is putting images of several famous landmarks and interesting places on its website which you can download to your GPS device via the USB and it’s also possible to e-mail images. For example, instead of sending complex directions of how to get your house you could simply e-mail a NavPix image of it to your friends which would store all the geographical co-ordinates. It’s also possible to create your own NavPix from any digital picture you already have using Navman’s online toolkit.
Featuring 4inch WQVGA (480 x 272 pixel) widescreen displays, the Navman iCN720 and iCN750 devices offers up to date speed camera warnings which can be downloaded from Navman’s website and can be used with an optional extra traffic module (this costs around £100). This uses FM technology so there are no additional dial-up costs and can easily be clipped onto the GPS device.
Costing £549, the Navman iCN750 comes with 17 European maps pre-installed into its hard drive while the iCN720 features maps of the UK and Ireland and costs £399. Both units come with a car suction mount, cigarette lighter, carry case, USB cable and mains power adaptor.