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Expectation: a lot more laptop GPS software because of tablets?

View Poll Results: Will a more GPS laptop software be delivered?

Yes, probably a lot! And existing software will improve 0 0%
Yes, but not that many and existing software will improve 4 80.00%
None, but the existing software will improve! 0 0%
None, what exists exists and will not change a lot 1 20.00%
Voters: 5. You may not vote on this poll

Plantje
Since a certain "fruit" has announced and started selling their iPads a lot of companies have stated they will create a tablet as well.

A lot of the tablets will also be Windows 7 based. Like the EXOPC, HP Slate, a lot of Atom devices...
Next to that the convertibles like the Packard bell butterfly, Asus T101MT, Acer 1825 PTZ are also booming!

What do you think? Will this trigger software brands to make new or improve their existing navigation software?

Do we for example expect a Tom Tom for Windows 7? Do we expect Microsoft to push their Streets&Trips/Autoroute and MapPoint products to be better turn by turn navigation products?

Let me know what you think! Just curious!
SpadesFlush
Speaking from personal experience, the MSFT navigation products you site work quite well on tablets and UMPCs running Windows operating systems, so I think your question can be narrowed to whether or not there will be such applications for i-products as well.

But, otherwise, a good question.
Ken in Regina
SpadesFlush,

Plantje's question was whether Streets&Trips/Autoroute/Mappoint would become better turn-by-turn navigation products. That's a pretty good question because realtime navigation is still not one of their strongest features.

...ken...
tcassidy
Tablets will not make any difference in this arena as they do the same basic things all computers do. The main difference is touch screen, not one of S&T strongest areas but not an area that will improve its real time navigation for all users. Also, page display mode which already benefits S&T as it reduces the wasted area at the bottom of the screen.

Terry
Plantje
Tablets will not make any difference in this arena as they do the same basic things all computers do.
If that is your assumption I agree. It is true they do the same basic things all computers do.
But a lot of people wouldn't think of taking their laptops with them in the car and use them as navigation system. If you take the approach that a tablet is more like a PDA/smartphone, but it has a larger screen and you can do more stuff that you can do on a normal pc I think people DO think of using the tablet as navigation system in the car.
I would assume the requirement for nice software will increase as well. But hey...that is just my opinion!
The main difference is touch screen, not one of S&T strongest areas but not an area that will improve its real time navigation for all users. Also, page display mode which already benefits S&T as it reduces the wasted area at the bottom of the screen.

Terry
Yes, with regards to navigation Streets & Trips may definitely improve! But there are also other programs like Mapfactor PC Navigator, Navigon NavigatoR etc that deliver TomTom alike navigation. Very good on the turn by turn navigation, but still a lot can be improved.

At least I really hope that a lot of software makers will see an opportunity here and start working on creating navigation software or improving the existing software.

For example, it would be nice if TomTom were to create a package for Windows 7!
xPosTech
Tablets will not make any difference in this arena as they do the same basic things all computers do. The main difference is touch screen, not one of S&T strongest areas but not an area that will improve its real time navigation for all users. Also, page display mode which already benefits S&T as it reduces the wasted area at the bottom of the screen.

Terry
Don't forget that the touchscreen is still in its infancy. Touch technology is improving day by day.

If you take the iPhone explosion as an example (people jumping on the no keyboard/keep up with the Jonses bandwagon), tablets will make a huge difference. Remember what happened after the Apple Mac introduced the mouse to the home computer? It didn't take long till IBM et al added the mouse to the PC. Now most users are lost without one (or its equivalent).

Just as the GUI freed users ignorant of DOS to use a Mac or PC for everything imaginable (in addition to "Keeping a search-able list of your recipes in the kitchen!") the touch screen will eventually eliminate the keyboard (except for "power users").

These tablets will not grow much beyond the 10" size since they (in portrait) must be spanned by the thumbs for the current generation of "texters". These preteens, tweens and teens can text with their thumbs on an iPhone about as fast as a slow typist.

The tablet will fill the gap until Voice Recognition matures and takes over.

Ted
tcassidy
As a convertible user. I'm not holding my breath. I love Garmin Mobile PC in page mode with the touch screen but all the new multitouch stuff is just fluff. Those who are impressed by those features are not navigators.

Terry
Marvin Hlavac
... Terry, the multi-touch would be nice for zooming in and zooming out though ...
Ken in Regina
Touchscreen technology as it is evolving is inherently self-limiting. It does not allow for fine control. It has to accomodate different size fingertips, and even the skinniest fingertip is really fat compared to, say, a stylus.

Even today's young texters have discovered the wonder of keyboards. Witness the continued popularity of the Blackberry, which has always had a keyboard. But also note that there has been a huge proliferation of new devices with fixed or sliding keyboards. My daughter has had her LG Rumor for about three years. She would kill before she would go back to a phone without a keyboard. She also has an Apple iTouch. She wishes the iTouch had a real keyboard so she could use it for more than just trivial stuff.

Devices without keyboards tend to be used much more "passively", e.g. more for viewing things. That's fine for many uses and for many people because that's really what they want to do. But the popularity of the iPad, I think, will actually accelerate the popularity of convertibles because of the inherent limits of touchscreen by itself. Many will be happy with only touchscreen. Many will find it much too limiting without a keyboard.

2

...ken...
tcassidy
Even some user programmable buttons would help. I don't need a full keyboard but there is too much you can't do with touch only.

Terry
SpadesFlush
$0.02: I recently abandoned my old keyed mobile telephone for a variety of reasons and went to a keyless, touchscreen unit, although not an IPhone or a truly smart phone (Samsung SGH-T749). Although it is 3G and web-enabled, I choose not to buy all that data service stuff.

I like it. It has a virtual qwerty keyboard touchscreen that pops up in 'landscape' orientation and is fine for limited typing. I do text albeit NOT at non-teenager levels and it is fine for that. It can be USB-ed to a proper computer and that is useful for the heavier tasks. There is a rudamentary navigation application to which I do not subscribe ($9.95/month!) and I don't really see it working as a nav tool.

So, as a phone it is great. If I want a big and bulky computer, I always have my Viliv S5.
Plantje
I think convertibles or things like the Asus EP121 (see ASUS Eee Pad EP101TC and EP121 preview -- Engadget) and the Lenovo U1 have the future.

In the car etc you have the flexibility of having a sleek slate device and in the office and at home you have a laptop.

Either way... I still think the laptop navigation market will be much more interesting!
xPosTech
I'm thinking about ordering this 2.4GHz Rechargeable Handheld Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard for PC/PDA/Cell Phones.

It's small - about 4 1/2" X 2 1/2 " X 1/2". And white - Ken will like that. If you need a hard KB for a tablet or convertible to control things like full screen/regular etc. then something like this might be the answer.

It's not designed for lots of text or data entry. Stick it on the console (or door shelf if you're left handed) and you're set. Lenovo even has a larger one with touch pad and mouse buttons. More keyboards are at the link. I found these when looking for a KB for my Samsung touch PDA.

Convertibles should be designed to separate the keyboard and screen instead of covering up the keyboard. Lots more productivity.

Ted
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