Thursday, December 28, 2006

Closing (Year) News

.Bushnell maker of outdoor equipment including compasses entered the GPS market. Their Onix devices will allow use of georeferenced satellite and aerial photos on a dedicated handheld device.

Its B&W model can run on 2 AA for 26~39 hours according to their product description. Images can be layered with a compass, waypoints.

You can find the B&W model for about US$200. Four free downloads of satellite images when you register. It uses Sirf chipsets and stores up to 500 waypoints.

[Update Feb/07: Map data provided by Navteq.]

. GigaOm published a good summary of websites combining geotagging, maps and its growing use. Check the convenient links list at the bottom of the article.

. Somehow BW discovered Loki from Skyhook Wireless. Just be aware before you give it a spin that you might have a lot more work to remove it from your system than it deserves.

. If you only want to generate an NMEA log that keeps track of location without any navigation aid you might want to try the DG-100 from Globalsat (but it is not for sale just yet). GPSPassion published a review about its usage including software that let you draw your tracks in Google Maps.

. The GPS Wireless 2007 conference is scheduled for March 1st at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA. From the Telematics Journal.

. RFID news from Japan via Engadget where Fujitsu combined both GPS and RFID in a single chip. Plus a 'Minority Report' type project with RFID used to help customers find their way in a shopping district.

. Meanwhile in Fresno, California police used GPS to track DUI convicts.

. According to The Register, TomTom seems to be winning the patent dispute initiated by Garmin. But this is probably not the end of it.

. And PCWorld goes over a pretty decent exercise of predicting trends in the mobile space. Besides more traking kids type phones you will conclude that the:

"[...] level of communication [by sending SMS to each other's smartphones] will increase even more."
And that:
"[...] with e-mail-capable smartphones now available for the masses [besides expensive Blackberries], the masses will start using mobile e-mail."

But to bet on phoneTV is still silly. Just watch (and interact with) a Wii instead.

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