Lobbying for Standards
With the population explosion of GPS units, and the popularity of this forum, it is obvious there are some shortcomings in all units. We will undoubtedly see some rationalization in the industry over the coming year or two as some flounder and some succeed in the marketplace and new ideas come forward.
Two of the shortcomings that I see are the inabilty to edit the onboard POIs that come with the units and the lack of compatibility between units or their inabilty to cooperate.
Having enough POIs to cover everyones needs (or wants), across the continent is a ridiculous possibility as is expecting the purchase of updates every few months. Why not an editable main POI file allowing you to customize for your personal needs without having to switch to an enhanced POI file. Either make the main one editable or integrate seamlessly with your enhanced files, so the info is consistent.
Routing engines all seem to be a bit 'flaky' and I find using a laptop, with something like Google or Streets and Trips to plan my trips much better than punching in East Overshoe to West Muddy Boot and expecting a reasonable route, with all the appropriate stops over three days and 2000 miles. But instead of having to punch all that info back into my GPS, why can't I simply export it to a trip planner on my GPS and off I go.
This may all seem to be blue sky, but good ideas are adopted by the smart corps- those that listen to their customers- and used to improve their offerings. This industry is expanding too quickly for the old school to jealously sit on their thumbs and depend on market position and trade secrets to keep them at the head of the pack.
The opportunity is here and now for we the consumer to get the products we want, with the features we want.
Write your GPS supplier, tell them what you like and what you don't like about their units. And tell them what you will have on the next unit you purchase.
Squeaky wheel and all that!
This hearkens back to the
This hearkens back to the pre-open architecture of the PC days. Now you have two main gold standards. PC and Mac hardware bases. Gone are the Atari, TI, Commodore, etc "non standard" computers. I don't think auto GPS in the US is large enough to cause a "war standardization"...yet. But, it happened with the cell phone industry regarding calling plans. In the old days, people got frustrated with roaming because they never knew when and where they might be roaming and get charged exorbitant fees per minute. They might be at the edge of their geographical area and think they're "safe", but, in reality, they connected to a tower just over the line. I truly believe the salvation and explosion of cell phone use was the general elimination of roaming through the cell companies getting together, agreeing to tower sharing and not keeping it proprietary.