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Search Results for: GPS

DeLorme’s inReach Handheld GPS Can Send Emergency SMS Messages

DeLorme inReach (Images courtesy DeLorme)
By Andrew Liszewski

GPS-equipped smartphones have slowly been replacing dedicated GPS units because quite frankly, they just do more. But DeLorme is making a strong case for still carrying a separate GPS navigation device, particularly their new inReach which allows you to send SMS messages using the Iridium satellite phone system. From basically anywhere on Earth. Because it’s clearly lacking a keyboard or touchscreen display, the inReach allows you to create three different emergency messages before you head out on your adventure. Then when things go wrong you can send the one that’s most appropriate for your dire situation. When the SOS indicator light on the inReach changes color, you’ll know that your message was received and that help is on the way.

The inReach can also be paired with an Android smartphone, allowing you to send 160 character messages as emails, SMS, or even update Facebook and Twitter with your recent exploits, or a final goodbye if you’re in real trouble. The device also sends your location data back to the DeLorme servers where friends and family can track your location online. The service will start at $9.95 per month for basic safety, and goes up from there if you need the advanced messaging and tracking. As for the price of the hardware and availability? Currently unknown.

[ DeLorme inReach—two-way satellite communication ] VIA [ Werd & Wired Gadget Lab ]

Topcon’s IP-S2 Lite System Could Add Road Conditions To GPS Map Data

Topcon IP-S2 Lite System (Images courtesy DigInfo TV)
By Andrew Liszewski

At the 3D & Virtual Reality Exhibition, which was recently held in Tokyo, a Japanese company called Topcon revealed a new scanning system that could one day bring road condition data to GPS devices. The system, known as IP-S2 Lite, uses a 360° camera combined with a laser scanner, an inclinometer and GPS positional data to generate a 3D representation of where it’s being driven through. The data allows accurate measurements to be made of everything captured in the video, including distance height and surface.

Most recently the new system was used to evaluate the damage and condition of roads in Japan in areas that were damaged by the recent earthquake. But it doesn’t seem like that much of a stretch to assume that it could also be used to generate accurate map data for GPS devices that better reflected the 3D nature of roadways like hills, dips and maybe even particularly egregious potholes.

[ DigInfo TV – Road Condition Evaluation System Measures Distance, Height and Area ] VIA [ Akihabara News ]

Pentax’s New Ultra-Rugged Optio WG-1 Does GPS Too

Pentax Optio WG-1 GPS (Image courtesy Pentax)
By Andrew Liszewski

Well Canon, I’m afraid your GPS monopoly on P&S cameras is now over because today Pentax announced their new Optio WG-1 which also includes GPS geo-tagging. Now I don’t think it can double as a GPS logger like Canon’s new SC230 HS does, but the Optio WG-1 brings its own unique feature set to the table. Namely the fact that it’s built Tonka-tough.

On the technical side you get a 14MP sensor, 2.7-inch 16:9 widescreen LCD display, 720P video capture with HDMI out, a 5X internal optical zoom lens (28-140mm) and a fun ‘Enhanced Digital Microscope’ mode which uses a set of 5 LEDs around the lens to ensure smooth and even lighting when shooting in macro mode. And on the ‘that’s one tough SOB side’ the WG-1 GPS not only looks like it can take a licking, but the housing is waterproof to 33 feet (usable when submerged), shockproof up to 5 foot drops, crushproof up to 220 pounds of force and can withstand temps as low as 14°F. Available in April the Optio WG-1 GPS will sell for $399.95 while a non-GPS version is a bit cheaper at $349.95.

[ Pentax Optio WG-1 GPS ]

Canon’s New PowerShot SX230 HS – Lotsa Zoom And Built-in GPS

Canon's New PowerShot SX230 HS (Image courtesy Canon)
By Andrew Liszewski

Canon unveiled a huge pile of new toys today including 4 new PowerShot models, with the SX230 HS being the most drool-worthy. All of the models include Canon’s proven HS SYSTEM which uses their DIGIC 4 image processor and a high-sensitivity 12.1MP CMOS sensor to reduce noise in photos taken in dark situations, so you don’t necessarily have to always resort to washing everything out with the built-in flash. It’s also got a 28mm equivalent lens with 14X optical zoom and optical image stabilization to keep blurs to a minimum when zoomed all the way in.

It’s also one of Canon’s first P&S cameras to come with a built-in GPS receiver that continually tracks the user’s location and records the latitude, longitude and altitude of where a pic was taken in its EXIF data. The receiver will even keep working when the camera is off, so the camera then doubles as a GPS logger, tracking the user’s adventures wherever they may roam. And since sometimes 1,000 words isn’t enough to capture a moment, the SX230 HS also captures full 1080P video at 24fps, or 720P at 30fps. Or drop the resolution to 320×240 where you can then capture high-speed footage at up to 240fps.

The Canon PowerShot SX230 HS will be available near the end of March with an expected MSRP of $349.99.

[ PR – Elevating Quality Without Compromise: Canon U.S.A. Introduces Four New Powershot Cameras With Canon’s HS System And Full HD Video Capability ]

Callaway Reveals Its New upro mx GPS Device – Should Probably Just Release An iPhone App Already

Callaway's upro mx GPS Device (Images courtesy Callaway)
By Andrew Liszewski

Yesterday Callaway revealed an updated version of their upro handheld GPS device, now bestowed with an ‘mx’ after its name, and a full-color multi-touch and gesture-friendly 2.2-inch LCD display. Obviously designed and optimized for use on golf courses, the upro mx comes pre-loaded with maps for more than 25,000 courses around the world, including high-resolution aerial photography of each course which apparently only they offer. And while there’s enough content on the device to get you going right out of the box, you can also download more detailed data for where you’re playing including a Virtual Green View with exact putting distances, SmartView which calculates the best virtual view based on where you’re standing and AnyPoint technology for extremely accurate distance measures.

The Callaway upro mx will be available in May for just $199, but I have to wonder why it couldn’t also be available as an iPhone app. I’m sure it’s still a must-have for some professional golfers who need highly accurate GPS distance readings, but I think the casual links player would find it far more convenient to have this built-in to their phone. And if that database of 25,000+ courses is too hefty to download at once, users could simply pull down offline copies of courses as needed. I’m fairly certain even the most avid of golfers won’t be playing at all 25,000 courses in their collection.

[ PR – Callaway Golf Introduces Next Generation upro GPS Device ]

[CES 2011] Nike’s TomTom Powered GPS SportWatch

Nike+ SportWatch GPS (Images property OhGizmo!)
By Andrew Liszewski

Realizing that not everyone likes to jog or run with an iPod strapped to their arm, Nike has created a new watch that works in tandem with their in-shoe Nike+ Sensor and provides the same functionality already built-into the iPods and their iPhone app. The advantage to using this watch though is that it’s not only waterproof, but it also features TomTom GPS hardware built-in. So while it’s keeping track of your steps via the in-shoe sensor, it’s also tracking where they’ve been taken, allowing your route to be analyzed on the Nikeplus.com website. And in order to keep things simple and battery life as lengthy as possible, the watch syncs to your PC, and the Nike+ website, via a USB connector integrated into the watch strap.

The watch sports an inverted monochrome LCD display and a robust UI that’s easy to navigate via a couple of buttons on the side of the case. And besides just keeping track of how far you’ve run and where you’ve been, the watch will also compare your performance against past results to let you know if you’ve improved, and of course will even nag you when you haven’t gotten out for a bit of exercise in a while. The Nike+ SportWatch GPS will be available on April 1, and while not specified, we were told that pricing should be comparable to other GPS-equipped watches already on the market.

[ Nike+ SportWatch GPS ]

My Custom TomTom Lets You Customize Your GPS Unit

My Custom TomTom (Images courtesy TomTom)
By Andrew Liszewski

Odds are if you’re really a stickler about having a matching interior in your car you’ve already got a built-in GPS unit in the dashboard, but TomTom’s new My Custom option is a handy way to have your navigation unit match the rest of your car if you’ve opted for an after-market unit. There’s a pretty large selection of pre-made designs to choose from on their website (depending on the model you choose) or you can upload your own images and add custom text all from their website. The printing itself is done by CafePress who have some experience with this kind of thing, and from what I can tell the added graphics add about $10 to the cost of the unit.

[ My Custom TomTom ] VIA [ SlashGear ]

Transcend Goggles Are First To Feature Integrated GPS

By Chris Scott Barr

Having a GPS is great when you’re visiting a new city. As there’s nothing quite like getting lost and having to stop in a seedy part of town and ask directions. However, if you’re somewhere that has no people to ask for directions, such technology is invaluable. That’s what makes these Transcend goggles so awesome.

The goggles feature a built in HUD which gives you information such as latitude/longitude, altitude, speed traveled, current temperature, time and more. The best part is that when you get back home, you can plug them into your computer and download the GPS information. The included software then overlays your route with Google Maps so you can see exactly where you’ve been. The spiffy goggles will set you back either $400 or $500 (depending on whether you want polarized lenses or not) and can be preordered now.

[ Zeal Optics ] VIA [ Technabob ]

Casio’s New EXILIM EX-H20G Hybrid GPS Camera Lets You Geotag Indoors

Casio EXILIM EX-H20G (Image courtesy Casio)
By Andrew Liszewski

Today Casio introduced a couple of new P&S digital cameras, with the EXILIM EX-H20G pictured here being the more interesting of the two, at least in my opinion. It’s got a 14.1MP sensor with 10X optical zoom, H.264 720P @ 30fps video recording capabilities, a 3 inch LCD display and CCD-shift image stabilization. Nothing that remarkable, unless you’re a world traveler who’ll appreciate the camera’s GPS capabilities.

Casio EXILIM EX-H20G (Image courtesy Casio)

The EXILIM EX-H20G boasts a hybrid GPS system which uses actual GPS positioning, in conjunction with an internal motion sensor, to pinpoint, or at least intelligently guess, a user’s position even when a GPS signal is unavailable. It uses the camera’s last known satellite-acquired position, information from the motion sensor and map data stored in the camera to mark the location of a photo even if you’re indoors. It might not be 100% accurate, but it’s better than nothing.

That map data also lets you use the EX-H20G as a handheld GPS unit while in unfamiliar territory, helping you get around and even reminding you where videos or photos you snapped were actually taken on a map. And if you want to make the most of your time being a tourist, it’s even got a database of 10,000 sightseeing photo spots around the world, which will alert you when there’s a POI nearby. Of course that extra functionality is bound to take a toll on the camera’s battery life, but nothing is free in this world right? The EXILIM EX-H20G will be available sometime in November for $349.99.

[ Casio EXILIM ]