I raise the question because I remember there was a time when non volatile (programmable) chips were said to have had a limited reprogrammable cycle life. Is that true with today's programmable chips (that can be found in modern Nuvi, Oregon, eTrex units?) Then again with that issue aside, there is the matter of risking "well enough software" for a potentially unstable update, per given unit.
To the question itself: my GPS equipment update cycles are prioritized in this manner: useability, stability, reliability being my first priorities. Latest POI/maps least important. Our eTrex30 has always been both stable and useable as intended, thus it has had only one update in it's lifetime. My Oregon 450 is just the opposite, thus I update that unit whenever I can. I'm currently satisfied with our Nuvi1450 ver 6.20/2013.40 maps set so I'm unlikely to update that any time soon. POIs? Perhaps once every 2 months if that.
What update practices/concerns do others have, as reflected in software update schedule(s)?
I tend to keep my Garmin GPS devices up to date with the current software, maps and other updates. For firmware, I keep the gupdate.gcd files so I can back level if the need arises. I also keep at least 2 generations of maps and other data files so I can restore those if the newest versions cause trouble. But to be honest, I have never had to back level anything and I have been using Garmin GPS devices since 2008.
Yes there are a limit to the number writes for the non-volatile memory. It is similar (if not the same) technology for SSD drives. The early SSD's had an average lifespan of about 3 years before there would be errors on the drive.
That being said, a laptop harddrive sees 1000-2000 times the usage than a GPS. Just booting a laptop would put more writes to the drive than your GPS would do in 6 months - 1 year.
To answer your questions, I update maps when they become available. For POI's I tend to update them every 1-2 weeks and always before a big trip.
I only update my Nuvi when I receive notifications that updates are available.
So then your maps and firmware are 3-5 years out-of date?
I check each quarter for updates.
I usually keep my unit up to date. I usually check the POI-Factory to see when updates are released, wait a couple of days to see if any problems are being reported, then update my unit. Have not had any problems using this scenario.
I update POIs on no regular schedule. We are not in an area where red-light cameras or speed camera databases are available. But if I go on a trip everything is up to date.
So then your maps and firmware are 3-5 years out-of date?
I never map update any of my PNDs, preferring instead to buy a new one every three years or so with a current map, to avoid all the 'agita' that has come to be associated with Garmin map updating. In my NYC/LI metro area, not many new roads since the 50s.
By comparison I update the unit's firmware as soon as it is available, primarily because it is so hassle free via WebUpdater.
Like wise, I actually look forward to updating my POI factory Red Light Cam/Speed and other apps because the process is painless via POI Loader. A shout-out here to Mr. Melby for a great job!
I update maps everytime they come up. Like everyone has said, I back everything up but I have never had to use a backup. As far as POI's, I log into this site every Monday or Tuesday, check my Favorites. If there are updates, I copy them over to my C drive. I don't necessarily update my GPS at that time. I wait for the next big trip I'm going to take and then I update my GPS.
whenever new maps are available.. next update (hopefully) Aug 22..
Maps when available.
Garmin software when available.
Red light & speed cameras once a week.
POIs as necessary but least often of the updates.
I tend to update 2 or 3 times a year as the process is so time consuming using garmin installer.
Try to keep everything updated
I raise the question because I remember there was a time when non volatile (programmable) chips were said to have had a limited reprogrammable cycle life.
The worst memory chips I can remember could be rewritten at least 10000 times. (I suppose some were worse, but I don’t remember them.) Some of the new chips are unlimited. In any case that applies to a region of the chip, not the entire chip. It is going to be real hard to do 10000 downloads.
I guess I'm the other extreme - since I don't do a lot of traveling - will generally only update ahead of a trip (or anticipated use).
...I just update POI's before a long trip.
"I was asked to come to Chicago because Chicago is one of our fifty-two states."
I only use my Garmin usually when we are going on a trip.. normally don't use it around town...use my Galaxy phone if I need to.
.....maps every 12-18 months. That is often enough for me. POI's are updated every couple of months and especially before I go on a trip.
Being basically lazy, I usually do maps once a year unless a major trip is planned then maybe twice a year. POI a few times a year usually around our normal trip we take on a regular base and any new trips.
I do mine probably every second update. It's the POIs I update...
Firmware - a month or so after an update is announced. I let others be the beta testers.
Maps - Once or Twice a year. Too slow and painful otherwise.
POI's - Once or twice a year and right before a trip, since I'm putting trip POIs on there, anyway.
Maps I do about once a year. I too find them just too much work for too little gain any more frequently than that.
General POI's about 4 times a year, but the Red Light and Speed ones whenever I see an increase in cameras listed for my local area.
I update files before long car trips if I haven't done so in the last couple months. In general, the longer the trip, the more likely I will update the files again.
I tend not to update the 1490 much at all...it never gets better anyway.
anything from a reputable flash manufacturer in the last 5 years should outlive the utility of the device.
maps I upgrade quarterly, and that pulls along with it any OS/add-on updates.
POIs I update as needed, such as before trips, or when I notice a new location of something.
Try to keep everything updated as the maps and firmware are released.
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