Garmin Announces Palm OS Bluetooth GPS Kit

Garmin today announced a GPS navigation system for customers using Palm OS based handhelds or smartphones with Bluetooth. This GPS package includes navigation software with feature-rich points of interest and Garmin's GPS 10, a sensor that receives location data from the Global Positioning System (GPS) and transmits that information to mobile devices enabled with Bluetooth wireless technology. More...

"Palm OS-based products, such as the Treo 650, are renowned for their robust and feature-rich applications, and adding Garmin's GPS navigation expands this portfolio of applications," said Gary Kelley, Garmin's vice president of marketing. "The GPS 10 gives Palm customers with Bluetooth enabled devices a cost-effective way to integrate turn-by-turn GPS navigation with electronic devices they already own and are familiar with."

Garmin GPS 10 Bluetooth Reciever for Palm OSThanks to Garmin's Que navigation software, Palm OS users may easily look up addresses, restaurants, hotels, and other services. In addition, users who have a Treo 650 phone may call ahead to their destination with the push of a button using the phone number listed in the point of interest database. After selecting a destination, users will travel from door-to-door with voice- prompted turn-by-turn directions. If a driver misses a turn, an alternate route will automatically be calculated so the user can quickly get back on course.

The GPS 10 software makes it possible for a Palm OS based personal digital assistant (PDA) or smart phone to become a portable GPS navigation device. With a fully-integrated, wireless, WAAS-enabled GPS receiver and transceiver with Bluetooth technology, the GPS 10 provides strong reception and data transmission up to 30-feet. The compact and waterproof device may be discreetly mounted inside or outside a vehicle. The GPS 10 has a rechargeable lithium ion battery for up to 12-hours of use, and a 12-volt adapter for added flexibility.

The GPS 10 Deluxe package includes MapSource City Navigator North America mapping software, which offers nearly six million points of interest and detailed street-level mapping of the entire U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico. Map data is provided by NAVTEQ -- a world leader in premium-quality mapping. The GPS 10 Deluxe has an estimated retail price of $249.99.

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?? Not on their web site

Nebari @ 1/3/2006 10:12:13 AM # Q
Palm compatability is not listed on the web page for this item at this time.

Quoting:
Minimum Pocket PC requirements: Pocket PC 2002 (Bluetooth enabled) or Windows Mobile for the Pocket PC 2003 operating system, 16 MB program memory

Minimum PC requirements: Pentium-class processor or compatible; Windows 98, NT 4.0, 2000, ME, or XP operating system; 32 MB RAM; 800 MB – 2 GB of free hard disk space, CD-ROM drive; 16-bit color display adapter and monitor; mouse or other pointing device; Internet access recommended

http://www.garmin.com/products/gps10/

IIIxe-->M505-->TT

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Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS

kfife @ 1/3/2006 11:22:16 AM # Q
If it’s made by Garmin, I’m sure it’s best of breed. I’ve NEVER seen a Garmin product that did not amaze me with the level of attention to detail, but I think Bluetooth GPS is a half-baked concept—on palm or on a laptop for that matter.

FIRST, there's the little discussed single-radio Bluetooth problem, meaning I can't use my Bluetooth radio for "A" while using it for "B". For example I can't use my Bluetooth mouse, nor my Bluetooth headset, nor my Bluetooth-internet-on-my-cell-phone etc while I'm using the BT GPS. Furthermore, I have to "disconnect" whatever other device I was last using so the radio is available to be ‘seen’. Too fiddly for me, and I'm a card-carrying wonk. I can't imagine the rest of the world putting up with this.

SECOND, there's the whole Bluetooth pairing thing which is not THAT big of a deal, but it’s most definitely harder and less reliable than simply hooking up a cable or placing the device in a GPS cradle. Remember, if you get a new palm, use someone else’s palm, hard reset your palm—lots of events require you to re-pair. It’s inconvenient. But Karl you ask; are you forgetting what a pain in the a_s cables are? Nope. Read on.

THIRD, Palms acting as GPS's can't run on battery power. Let me repeat that. If using your Palm as a GPS, you need a cord. Trust me. Sure, you can operate without one for a while, but odds are, most of the time your battery won’t be fully charged, and the rest of the time you probably want to be navigating more than a handful of minutes. Don't forget that you might actually want to USE your palm once you get there, and don't forget that you may want to navigate home.

FOURTH, Bluetooth GPS receivers need power too. Even if you're lucky enough to not run out of batteries on your Palm, you have to be sure to have fresh in your GPS Receiver. To make it a reliable solution, you’ll want to plug THAT in too. So now instead of having ONE power cord from your cig lighter to your windshield-mounted GPS enabled palm cradle, you've got TWO power cords and a fiddly wireless connection. If you use alkaline batteries, you can keep a spare set in the glove box, but that gets expensive. Rechargeable batteries are great but the shelf life of their charge (even when not used) is measured in days, so you’re constantly changing them out. It’s a pain in the butt speaking from experience.

FIFTH, If the whole getup is working, you’ll need some way to hold the palm up so you can see it. without causing you to divert your attention from the road. For that you’ll need a cradle that suctions to the windshield.

Wouldn’t it be easier to just combine these into one? Yes it would be. I actually had one. It was a windshield mounted GPS cradle with a single power cord to the cig lighter. It held my palm where it could see the satellites, and held it where it could be seen by me. Not only did GPS’ing not use up my palm battery, but it actually charged it. When I got out of the car, I took the palm with me, left the cradle behind. Like a detachable-face radio, nobody would ever steal it. Now I'm on a T|X and can't use my GPS sled anymore because some bonehead at Palm keeps deciding to change the dam_ed connector.

They call this Progress?

-K


RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
LiveFaith @ 1/3/2006 11:53:23 AM # Q
Good points. The old saying goes "it looks good on paper". It can do it, but you may not want to do it. This is true with maaaaany electronic "solutions".

New cars with built in GPS and LCDs are definitely the way to go. That is until you leave the car.

Pat Horne; www.churchoflivingfaith.com

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
AdamaDBrown @ 1/3/2006 1:06:02 PM # Q
meaning I can't use my Bluetooth radio for "A" while using it for "B".

Really? I never noticed that. Of course, in a minute or so Surur is going to show up and point out that you can use multiple BT connections simultaneously on a PocketPC.

Palms acting as GPS's can't run on battery power.

Sure you can. Maybe not for 8 hours at a time, but I've used a BT GPS while untethered all the time. In that way, a BT GPS is vastly superior to a wired GPS, because you can take it anywhere. I used my BT GPS to survey the corners of a piece of land, which you couldn't do with an externally powered GPS.

What model was your GPS sled for?

For my money, I've usually had great success with BT GPS. My problems with it have mostly been due to human error--things like forgetting to install the maps. It's certainly a less inconvenient solution than the last GPS reciever I had, which was a cabled system.

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
cervezas @ 1/3/2006 1:06:51 PM # Q
I guess I can see the point as long as we're talking about using the GPS in the car. Personally, I think GPS navigation is pretty stupid when you could just look at a map when you need it, what, three times a year? I'm more interested in using GPS with software to track my progress when I'm hiking or running, in which case I'd just as soon not have it be the feature that determines what PDA I buy. And I'd also like it to be independently powered so I don't have to worry about draining the batteries on the device I use for everything else. For folks whose interest isn't in spending hundreds of dollars just to get driving directions I think kfife's arguments become mostly irrelevant and BT makes more sense.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog
RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
kfife @ 1/3/2006 1:18:33 PM # Q
You're right, as I said, you CAN, but not without having to dedicate a certian amount of mental bandwidth to managing batteries. The best GPS solutions are those that simply work when you need them witout forethought. That's why I liked my other solution better, which per your question was made by NavMan for the palm M515. I did a mechanical modification of the sled so it would fit my Tungsten T2. Then I ran Mapopolis.

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
kfife @ 1/3/2006 1:18:33 PM # Q
You're right, as I said, you CAN, but not without having to dedicate a certian amount of mental bandwidth to managing batteries. The best GPS solutions are those that simply work when you need them witout forethought. That's why I liked my other solution better, which per your question was made by NavMan for the palm M515. I did a mechanical modification of the sled so it would fit my Tungsten T2. Then I ran Mapopolis.

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
pascanu @ 1/3/2006 1:20:31 PM # Q
I TOTALY disagree. I use an i.Trek Bluetooth GPS receiver with my Palm Treo650 + Tomtom Navigator 5. Works GREAT.

>SECOND, [...] But Karl you ask; are you forgetting what a pain in the a_s cables are? Nope. Read on.

I don't need to read on. I'll ask you: what happens if you buy a new Palm and Palm keeps changing their connectors (I switched from a Zire72 to Treo650)? + I can use my GPS receiver with any laptop/PDA/phone that has bluetooth. I don't want to get cought in the middle of a MemoryStick vs. SecureDigital war/dilema.

>THIRD, Palms acting as GPS's can't run on battery power. Let me repeat that. If using your Palm as a GPS, you need a cord.

I agree. You can run a Palm+bluetooth GPS on battery power only for demonstration purposes. BUT: why are you bothered by the power cord but not the GPS serial cord?

>FOURTH, Bluetooth GPS receivers need power too.

Nope. My GPS receiver runs on battery for 14h+. I cannot drive that long so my batteries run out long before my GPS does :-) Most european cars have a seccond cigarette lighter in the back of the car and you can easely put your GPS receiver there if you want, it will be way less than 10 meters away from your Palm. Even so, in case you do not have that seccond cigarette lighter you can switch power from Palm to GPS, your Palm will run that long on batteries while the GPS charges (takes ~1 h).

>FIFTH, If the whole getup is working, you’ll need some way to hold the palm up so you can see it. without causing you to divert your attention from the road. For that you’ll need a cradle that suctions to the windshield.

I see no problem here. I got that vent mount for free with my GPS receiver. I see no advantage in having a complicated "cradle".

Bonus: with a bluetooh GPS receiver you can navigate as a pedestrian, not for hours, I agree, but long enough to find an address, a museum or whatever a tourist needs. You just stick the receiver in a pocket a hold just your PDA in your hand.

Now, the big issue here is the difference between Europe and US. Europe is full with bluetooth enabled devices, while the US has much more WiFi gadgets and access points. I have no ideea why this happened, it's just a fact.

>Now I'm on a T|X and can't use my GPS sled anymore because some bonehead at Palm keeps deciding to change the dam_ed connector.

I rest my case. :-P

Handspring Visor -> m505 -> Zire71 -> Zire72 -> Treo650

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
Surur @ 1/3/2006 1:31:24 PM # Q

I use my Tomtom bluetooth GPS receiver all the time. Its very liberating to just be able to get in your car and go anywhere you have a postcode for. In USA they have a grid system, and new roads, whereas in UK the roads have built up over 1000's of years, have been redesigned 20 times, and resemble a maze more than a public transportation system. Is it any wonder satellite navigation has taken of like a rocket in Europe. Here, maps are just not an option!

I agree with most of what the original poster said, but bluetooth solutions can be a lot more discreet than a GPS cradle, due to greater freedom in placing the various units. Also if your windscreen is of the reflective kind a cabled solution is just not practical. I have also taken my GPS reciever on a walk on occasion, and of course the very main reason is not suffering the constant change in connectors. I have used the same reciever for 3 PDA's now, without having to change connectors once. I for one am tired of being messed around by the OEM's. Bluetooth is the way out.

Surur

BTW, with pocketpc's you can have multiple bluetooth connections of different types e.g. headset and serial.

They said I only argued for the sake of arguing, but after an hour I convinced them they were wrong...

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
freakout @ 1/3/2006 5:14:39 PM # Q
Cervezas said
"Personally, I think GPS navigation is pretty stupid when you could just look at a map when you need it, what, three times a year?"

Don't get out much, David? ;) :P

Seriously, I would have killed for my current GPS setup when I was delivering pizzas. The store I worked for covered a huge footprint, with a lot of new housing developments in the area with their own little complicated maze of streets. Being able to just punch in an address would have been a huge time-saver.

What's more, when driving in a city like Sydney - a maze of one-way streets and confusing directions - the voice directions are a lifesaver. Ever tried to read a street directory while driving in city traffic? Other drivers do not appreciate it ;) Not to mention it's damn handy when the road signs are missing/invisible, as is often the case around here.



Tim Carroll
Your friendly customer service robot
(and big Treo fan)

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
cervezas @ 1/4/2006 2:06:12 AM # Q
freakout wrote:
Don't get out much, David? ;)

Heh, lately it seems like I've got taxi drivers and airline pilots doing all my driving for me, but that's another story. The point is, for many people (maybe not you damned fureigners) driving to a new place with a tricky address is a fairly rare thing and is not a really compelling reason to own a GPS unit. But there are other great uses for GPS--even ones that don't involve mapping. If you're a runner or cyclist GPS is a killer app because you can precisely monitor your speed and distance in real time and log your runs/rides to track your progress, for example. Geocaching is a popular game or sport that has sold countless GPS units. A Bluetooth GPS receiver and a BT-enabled PDA are ideally suited for these uses as well as the occasional use for navigation. Next to dial-up networking it's one of the most powerful uses of Bluetooth in a PDA.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
Software Everywhere blog
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
freakout @ 1/4/2006 5:01:00 AM # Q
"Heh, lately it seems like I've got taxi drivers and airline pilots doing all my driving for me, but that's another story"

Are YOU Carl Yankowski? ;)

Tim Carroll
Your friendly customer service robot
(and big Treo fan)

RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
DJS_TX @ 1/4/2006 11:33:15 AM # Q
I don't agree with your arguments at all but I will add one thing:

You said
"Now I'm on a T|X and can't use my GPS sled anymore because some bonehead at Palm keeps deciding to change the dam_ed connector."

It's worse than that, palm not only changes the mechanical connectors but they changed the electrical interfaces as well. My old Tungsten T has a real serial port that I could hook up to a serial GPS. After the Handspring acquisition they stupidly went to a handspring style serial port which uses TTL level logic (lower voltages and inverted logic from standard RS232 serial). Your GPS cradle probably could not even communicate with your TX even if you could rewire the connectors.

The solution for me was to try and go to bluetooth for all the signal interfaces and keep the power interfaces common. My GPS (Holux GPSlim236) and my Zire 72 both trickle charge off of a mini USB connector. Without any extra data cables I can use my bluetooth GPS with my palm, my powerbook, or my cellphone. And if I change any one of those devices, I don't have to worry about my GPS becoming obsolete as long as I keep bluetooth capability.
David


RE: Just say NO to Bluetooth GPS
hkklife @ 1/4/2006 4:24:04 PM # Q
"Next to dial-up networking it's one of the most powerful uses of Bluetooth in a PDA"


And, of course, Palm has seen fit in their boundless wisdom to disable BT DUN for *ALL* CDMA phones & carriers on their most recent handhelds. There just went one of the FEW honest-to-goodness legitimate reasons to even bother with BT (GPS being the other) in a non-headset environment.



Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX

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