Of in-car navigation systems

September 7, 2005

Scoble talks about the bugs in in-car navigation systems in his latest blog entry. I have to agree. We own a Honda Pilot and a Toyota Prius, both with navigation systems that are widely disparate in their guidance, user model and their capabilities. The voice navigation on the Prius is a gimmick IMO but certain features like “3 routes” helps you along by giving you control of which route you want to take based on distance and more.

When I have more time, I’ll write an in-depth compare/contrast of the two. In the meantime, here’s a thought for discussion: Why don’t DVD navigation systems support real-time traffic information? It’s about time. Use a mobile data network where free data isn’t available. Now here is a good use for that SPOT technology šŸ™‚

And yes, I traded in my Honda S2000 for a Toyota Prius. I’m paying my dues with a kid-friendly/commute friendly car now that my son is over 2 and it’s impractical to drive our gas-guzzling SUV all over. Call the $2000 tax rebate and savings on gas a downpayment on my next road rocket.

I’ll post more about the Prius later including hacks I’ve found. Time to get Phil Torrone at Make Magazine to hack a Prius to add Media Center šŸ˜‰

5 responses to Of in-car navigation systems


    I agree about the traffic info and the various systems the car makers use. Seems like there are 3 – 6 of them being used by most makers. The Acura RL does have traffic info. Not sure how it works though:


    I was coming to comment about the Acura RL and see Corey beat me to it. The Acura system using the traffic data sent by the XM satellite radio. XM NavTraffic: http://www.xmradio.com/xmnavtraffic/about.jsp



    In Germany, the last car that I rented in a recent travel was a Mercedes-Benz, and it updates dinamycally the route in the navigation system using data received via the radio car.

    It was amazing when the system changed the route in the middle of a trip, due to an accident in the highway (with a really big traffic jam), and drove us away, saving a lot of time.


    In response to your traffic question: Iā€™m a frustrated gadget guy because I live with SF Bay Area traffic and my current car navigation system doesnā€™t take into account traffic which means it is almost useless. When asked if people would be interested in a navigation system in their car that would tell you the fastest route to your destination based on current traffic information. http://www.vizu.com/vote_poll/Business/Grab-bag/Current+Events/Technology/Shopping+%2F+Products/Domestic+US/gps/garmin/magellan/.jsp?n=2801&cId=48 79% of people said they were very interested…so how much longer until this is in our cars?


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