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Review: Garmin Mobile PC
Marvin Hlavac
But I do wish the top area, where the text is, would be semi-transparent. It would look better. In the night mode it looks OK, but in the day mode the white stripe on top doesn't blend nicely with the map, like it does at night.

And the first issue, yes, looks like you've come across a limitation. It's not likely that that many people will ever notice, unless they navigate on really big monitors .
Ken in Regina
Marvin,

If it's an aspect ratio issue it will affect anyone like me with a laptop with a wide aspect ratio. That's probably most of the new laptops sold these days.

...ken...
Ducati
Marvin,

-I was hoping to see what steps and maybe how many / difficult it is to input multiple stops and "optimize" them.

-Also what is the max amount of stops you can input?

-I'm guessing the optimize features are based on the nuvi products? ie: final destination is always "fixed" meaning not included in the "opimization" or re-order of stops.

-I know exactly what you mean about the collector lane exit bug as CoPilot does it at times. It sounds like a good program with excellent map data.

Thanks a whole lot, I'm looking at returning CoPilot 11 and buying this.
Marvin Hlavac
Ken, you are right. It may be worth letting Garmin know (I'll send an e-mail tonight). Also, it would be appreciated if people reply to this thread to tell us what screen resolution they use, and if the program looks OK.

Ducati, I'm not sure how many stops one can enter to Garmin Mobile PC. I didn't have much time today, but I'll read up on it in the help file tomorrow. I tried to enter a few stops, and then when I clicked the sort button, the program asked me if I wanted to include the destination in the process (Yes?/No?) - so it seems you can do it both way. But I will look at it in more detail tomorrow, and I'll include a screenshot of it as well.

This morning I though I discovered a bug. I noticed two issues: I was able to enter only one 'via'. When I entered another one, the first one disappeared! Also I noticed when I set an intersection as a 'via', the program crashed. But then I remembered d0tech mentioning there was an update released [April 19, 2008]. I even quoted him, and I meant to download the update, but I never got around to doing it.

Here I will quote d0tech one more time:

Quote:
Originally Posted by d0tech
Just to let you guys know...there's an update for the software.
Thanks, d0tech. I pulled over to a nearby parking lot to download and install it. It took about 3 minutes, and now the above mentioned problems seem to be a thing of the past!

lforbes
Thanks - as usual, it's a good source of information.

Quote:
1. Address look up so far managed to let me look up everything I needed to: addresses, intersections. Only several missing POIs I was unable to find. Tell us specific examples of what you would like to test, and I (or anyone else who already received their Garmin Mobile PC) will try to search for it.
I've been doing some more experimentation (with S&T) and most of the difficulties I have been having stem from it's inability to sometimes differentiate addresses from places when entering named roads w/o house numbers. I have found that it will recognize Dr, Drive, Rd, Road, Way and Street as postfixes to named roads (eg. Green Street) but does not recognize Tr, Trail, Close, Ct (Court), Cr (Cresent), Gr, Green, St (Street), Ave or Avenue in which cases, it treats the address as a place. Trying to find the intersection of Beddington Tr and Deerfoot Tr for example gives a "can't find" error message but the intersection of 16th Ave and Deerfoot Tr works.

Also, "38&19" results in only a partial list of all such intersections in Calgary and other combinations such as "38ave & 19st" or "19ave & 38st" result only in intersections at 38 street(s) and 19 avenue(s). The only way to get all intersections is to enter "19* & 38*".

Quote:
2. Yes, favorite destinations can be stored. The function works the same way you are used to in S&T Keys - only the Garmin version looks better .

3. Third day of testing, and so far not a single issue with routing. But routing is something that more users will have to comment on.
Could someone please try the following:

Get a routing for "24304 Meadow Dr, Calgary" to "16ave & Deerfoot Trail". Does it root via Country Hills Blvd (the shorter but slower way) or 144th Ave (the longer but faster way)? I have tried this with a couple of dedicated GPS units (Omnitech and MioMap) specifying "fast" routing and they both route via Country Hills Blvd (which is a four lane road but has a lot of trafic lights). Only S&T, of what I have tried, gets the best route (and there are other examples).

Thanks for any info....

Laurie Forbes
tcassidy
As nobody appears to have this program on a wide laptop I can comment on the UMPC. This device can fake 1024x600 and the program fills the screen fine (see attached). Until I hear differently, I will assume I was exceeding the display abilities of the program at 1920x1200, not uncovering an aspect ration shortcoming.
The display on my 4:3 laptop at 1600x1200 is great.
Terry
Attached Images
1024x600umpc.jpg  
Ducati
This looks like a decent program, the only thing I can see missing is an info "bar" along the bottom showing at least destination maybe current road as well. I guess I would have to make sure my stack of paperwork doesn't get out of order. It definitely has more up to date map data than ALK products.

The side by side screen shots of the reorder of stops is exactly what I was looking for. I think I'm going to go ahead and get this product.

Huge Thanks!
Ken in Regina
Hi Ducati,

It looks like Marvin cropped those pictures just to focus on what he wanted to illustrate. If I've done this right, here's a full-screen shot of the map display with a route active. Hope this works.

Terry and Marvin,

Feedback from a widescreen laptop user, as you can see from the attached image, there is no problem at all on my 1280x800 screen

Terry,

Thanks for the tip on getting waypoints and stuff into Mobile PC. Works like a charm for waypoints, tracks, saved routes and maps. The only problem I have is that I can't use locked maps. They won't unlock with the ID the program has defaulted to. 'Sokay, I've got Metroguide Canada and Topo Canada to play with. They aren't locked.

...............Oh yeah, it was driving me nuts watching you guys getting to play with the neat new toy and me just twiddling my thumbs on the sidelines. So I'm playing with a free trial version. Works like a charm. Only hassle is that you have to go through some "beg" stuff at the front that's designed to remind you it's a trial copy and persuade you to buy it. It works splendidly with my S&T 2008 GPS receiver. I didn't have to to anything. It was plugged in when I fired up Mobile PC and it just quietly started using it.

I'll try to attach a screen cap of the GPS page (what a nuisance getting to that page).

...ken..
Attached Images
route.jpg   gpsinfo.jpg  
tcassidy
Ken,
Thank you for testing the aspect ratio issue.

For the GPS page, just click on the GPS bar display in the top right corner of the Menu page. The GPS display is then the second button labeled GPS Info.
To get to the Menu page from anywhere in the program click on the Done button or Esc key and hold it for a couple of seconds.
Terry
tcassidy
Ken,
What a great idea of sending Topo maps to Mobile PC. I hadn't thought of that. It is difficult to switch maps though (Tools-Manage My Data-Map Sets-MapSource button and check or uncheck the approriate map sets.

Now if only I could transfer CNNA NT 2009 to MapSource!
tcassidy
Here is the Ladysmith view in Topo Canada. Looks ok but a little busy.
Terry
Attached Images
topo.jpg  
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by tcassidy
Here is the Ladysmith view in Topo Canada. Looks ok but a little busy.
Terry
Try setting it to display less detail. If it works the same as the Que software on my iQue, if you set it to less detail it won't display the contour lines until you zoom fairly tight.

The process for switching mapsets when you have combined segments from two or more different products is pretty much the same on my iQue, except it's much quicker in Mobile PC on my laptop because it has a bunch more horsepower.

Hmm... for those not familiar with the Garmin Que and Mapsource software, in Mapsource you can build custom mapsets for use by the Que software (iQue PDAs, Mobile PC, Nuvis, etc.). If you have multiple Garmin map products, as Terry and I have, you can combine segments from some or all of them into a single mapset. Once that mapset is loaded to the portable you can switch between the products, eg. City Navigator NA, Metroguide Canada, Topo Canada, etc.

When I'm on the road with my iQue PDA I typically have all the same areas with the segments from both Metroguide Canada and City Navigator in the mapset that I have loaded. If I'm in a large urban area I normally use City Navigator simply because it will have newer data .. newer POIs and addresses and subdivisions. If I'm away from the heavy urban centres I'll switch to Metroguide Canada for its completeness.

One nice feature about having the segments from both products included is that I get the POIs from both when I search, even though it will only display the detailed maps from one product or the other.

Terry, when I was last on the Island I included Topo Canada in the mapset I built because we intended to do some running about on the back roads up-Island, west and north from Port Hardy. I found that after the first bit I just left it set on Metroguide Canada. As near as I could tell about the only thing it doesn't have, versus Topo Canada, is the contour lines and the most trivial of trails.

I still marvel at what a perfectly complete product Metroguide Canada is. I suppose you had to know that they would kill a product that makes everything else they've got look so mediocre.

Re 2009NT, why can't you load it into Mapsource? Doesn't it come on a DVD? There should be a way to install it in Mapsource if it does.

...ken...
tcassidy
Ken,
Garmin has completely changed the format of the maps and how they show up in the registry. This product does not show in HKLM/Software/Garmin anywhere and certainly not in the FamiliesNT section as 2008 as other NT maps do. After studying the directory I installed it in, I could not find equivalent files to the ones listed in the registry for other map products I have.

I will warn you of one other problem. The standard Upgrade CNNA NT 2009 DVD will not load into MapSource unless you have, and connect a listed Garmin GPS product. The Mobile XT and Que are not part of that list. Garmin says there is a special version for Mobile XT (P/N 010-108-10-02), however it isn't even listed on their site.

I believe this is to protect the product as the old way had already been compromised by keygen programs available on the net.
Terry
tcassidy
Ken and Marvin,
I just finished a lengthy call with Garmin.The agent thought the non-appearance of CNNA NT 2009 in MapSource was an unlock code problem and she was about to generate a code for me. She then found out that was not the issue. The map version in Mobile PC is not transferrable.

The only way to have CNNA NT 2009 in MapSource is with an update DVD. This is unfortunate as Mobile PC would not be eligible for a free upgrade as it is already 2009. Also, I'm not sure which version of the upgrade is appropriate for Mobile PC.

Does somebody else want to sort out this dilemma with Garmin? Ken? I'm sure they are tired of talking with me.

I also asked why P/N 010-108-10-02 for Mobile XT didn't show up on the Garmin site. She said this is because they aren't selling it yet.

Terry
Ken in Regina
Thanks for the investigation, Terry. I won't do another City Navigator upgrade until I'm absolutely certain that they have killed Metroguide Canada. I'm still pushing Product Support for a definitive answer to that one.

I really really hate how poorly Navteq does Canada and I don't want to give Garmin another penny for a Navteq-based product until I'm positive I have no alternative AND there is enough new information in the areas that interest me to make it worthwhile. Heck, I'm still using Metroguide Canada most of the time that I'm outside a city. Why should I give them more money for a product I'll use less than half the time??

Did you do much poking around with Topo Canada on Mobile PC? It sure is beautiful on my laptop. I've got SA2008+, S&T 2008, nroute and Google Earth+ on the laptop and none of them hold a candle to Topo Canada and Metroguide Canada on Mobile PC.

...ken...
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