GET LOST

Finweek English Edition - - Communication & technology - BENE­DICT KELLY

SATEL­LITE NAV­I­GA­TION is one area that’s on the cusp of ex­plod­ing in SA, and if you were to be­lieve ra­dio ad­ver­tis­ing, then you would think that Garmin is the only brand in the mar­ket. It was with this in mind that we re­ceived the Garmin StreetPilot 510, the en­try-level satel­lite nav­i­ga­tion de­vice.

Ini­tially we were quite im­pressed: the menu struc­ture is easy to nav­i­gate, and we could set it up the way we liked with rel­a­tive ease. It was also quick to pick up our lo­ca­tion and to plot routes.

There’s no doubt that the StreetPilot would get you where you need to go with great ac­cu­racy, but it’s when you stray off the spec­i­fied route that cracks be­gin to ap­pear in the fa­cade of com­pe­tence.

We of­ten found it nec­es­sary to duck into side streets on our way to work to avoid the hellish Jo­han­nes­burg traf­fic, but in­stead of the Garmin pick­ing up our change of lo­ca­tion, it con­tin­ued to re­flect the car on the main road, which we were driv­ing par­al­lel to. This meant that when we came to the next in­ter­sec­tion we were given the wrong in­struc­tions. On our way to work this hap­pened three times; once it picked up that I was driv­ing in a dif­fer­ent street but it didn’t change the route guid­ance.

If I were in the mar­ket for an en­try level GPS, I would rather wait for the Tom Tom One to come to mar­ket as it’s both cheaper and more fully fea­tured than the Garmin.

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