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October 3rd, 2010


I now have a car with built-in GPS and, let me tell you, GPS systems are marvelous. I still have a standalone Garmin which we used in our last car, too.

But here’s the part I really don’t get: the annual map upgrade for my car’s GPS costs $200 and comes on a DVD. I can, on the other hand, buy an entirely new standalone GPS for less than that. And it’d have a nicer interface, more voice options, and be portable.

It seems like both of these devices are holdovers, which is too bad.

Posted in Cars

Ryan October 4, 2010, 2:54 pm

Our GPS DVD upgrades cost about that much, too. And the upgrades aren’t 100% accurate, either. We’ve upgraded once since 2006, last year when we were going to be visiting a few unfamiliar cities. We wanted to be sure we didn’t wind up in a lake.

It is a rip-off, but here’s one way to think about it: if you only upgrade every couple of years and spread the cost out, it comes out to being about the same or a little less than the monthly fees associated with a lot of GPS systems.

Paul October 4, 2010, 7:57 pm

Ah, good point. Our car has free traffic updates (although I’m not sure they’re *supposed* to be – but they are). Still, one can get a standalone GPS for under 200 bucks with “lifetime” traffic, at least over FM.

Aanen October 6, 2010, 1:41 pm

I’ll stick to a good old fashioned paper map, or google maps as a reference.

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