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Five OEM navigation systems that are worth your bucks

While just about any navigation system on the market will get you where you're going, not all of them are created equally. This is especially true in the world of OEM in-car navigation systems where screen size, interface design, feature sets, and (most importantly) price vary wildly from manufacturer to manufacturer. Some automakers offer cutting-edge GPS navigators with innovative features that you'll wonder how you ever got along without. Others will make you wish you'd skipped the pricey navigation package and just packed a smartphone.

We've taken a look back on the most recent OEM navigation systems to have graced the Car Tech garage and picked out a few manufacturers, in no particular order, that consistently knock it out of the park when it comes offering the best in-dash technology for getting from where you are to wherever you want to be. … Read more

Toyota, Nintendo team on in-car navigation remote

For those who often feel they are competing against their in-vehicle navigation system to get to their desired destination, Toyota has a new tool that may help you beat the voice that lives in your dashboard.

The Japanese automaker has teamed up with Nintendo to turn the Nintendo DS into navigational remote control that allows users to set destinations, map out routes, and even get sightseeing information.

Dubbed the Kuruma de DS, the game card is Bluetooth-enabled for easy pairing of the handheld game with the vehicle's navigation system, according to a Kotaku report. The interface features Nintendo Mii … Read more

Roadside Assistance: An iPod receiver and in-dash navigation

Greetings Car Tech fans and welcome back to CNET Roadside Assistance. Listeners of the podcast formerly known as Car Tech Live will no doubt remember that we used to devote an entire segment to answering user e-mails. Well, we're back, only in a less auditory format. So if you've got a car tech question you'd like to have answered, and you may find the answer to your query right here on the Car Tech Blog.

And now, let's get to the questions. "Twoheadedboy8" asks:

I am looking for a car stereo that focuses its … Read more

Two reasons why MotionX beats free nav apps

In the face of a few solid free navigation apps for the iPhone, such as Bing or MapQuest, MotionX GPS Drive would seem to have trouble justifying its price, even at only 99 cents. But it has proven a popular enough navigation app that Pioneer integrated it with the AppRadio head unit.

Two features of MotionX GPS Drive give it an edge over the free apps, its destination search capabilities and the ability to preload maps. MotionX GPS Drive is a connected navigation app, meaning it relies on an iPhone's data connection to get its maps. However, it is … Read more

MotionX GPS Drive for iPhone

In the face of a few solid free navigation apps for the iPhone, such as Bing or MapQuest, MotionX GPS Drive would seem to have trouble justifying its price, even at only 99 cents. But it has proven a popular enough navigation app that Pioneer integrated it with the AppRadio head unit.

Two features of MotionX GPS Drive give it an edge over the free apps, its destination search capabilities and the ability to preload maps. MotionX GPS Drive is a connected navigation app, meaning it relies on an iPhone's data connection to get its maps. However, it is … Read more

U.K. government funds elder-friendly navigation research

We're all aware of that corner of the market filled with products targeted at elderly users: mobile phones with limited functionality designed not to confuse, remote controls with huge buttons that are easy to read, and landline phones like the FotoDialer. Could the next product in this niche be a GPS navigation system for your grandma? A £12 million grant from the U.K. government is pushing in that direction.

Newcastle University Prof. Phil Blythe, who is heading up the team researching the project, cites waning eyesight, nervousness, and decreased confidence as issues for older drivers. The navigation … Read more

After 23 years, Garmin reaches 100 million devices sold

Garmin's GPS devices have reached a significant milestone.

The company announced today that it has now sold 100 million Garmin devices worldwide since its founding in 1989. The first Garmin device was sold in 1991, the company said, and took six years to reach its one-millionth sale. By 2007, it had sold 25 million devices. Now, just five years later, it has tripled that figure.

Based on the data provided by Garmin, sales are accelerating. In fact, Garmin acknowledged that much in a separate earnings release today, saying that it sold 2.7 million GPS units during the first … Read more

CoPilot Live Premium GPS - USA

With so many navigation apps available, many for free, it may be difficult to imagine paying for one. But ALK Technologies makes a reasonable case for its CoPilot Live Premium app. Its most compelling feature are the full set of maps it includes, making it possible to navigate without a data connection.

Most people using a smartphone for navigation will be doing 95 percent of their driving in an area with data coverage. But the most critical times for a good navigation app come out on back roads, far away from cell towers. Likewise, high data roaming charges in foreign … Read more

Hands on with Scout by Telenav's HTML5 navigation

Getting (or sending) turn-by-turn driving directions is now as simple as clicking a link in a text message or e-mail with Telenav's new Scout navigation Web app and your phone's HTML5 browser. OK, so there are more steps than just that one, but it's still a remarkably simple process.

Simply visit Scout.me with any browser and search the city of your choice for something to do, somewhere to eat, or somewhere to sleep. Destinations are organized into the main categories of Things to do, Food and Drink, Events, and Places to stay, with multiple subcategories for … Read more

Does it still make sense to buy a GPS?

A GPS is one of those things I don't know how we as a society ever lived without. Like Google. And cell phones. And Nutella crepes.

Back in the stone age of satellite-assisted navigation (I'm talking 2003, around the time my thoroughly inept book on GPS technology came out), you could expect to pay hundreds of dollars for a slow, bulky, cumbersome device that might get you from point A to point B -- provided you didn't so much as think about visiting point C. (Points D and E were right out.)

What a difference a decade … Read more