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Review: Microsoft Streets and Trips 2011
Marvin Hlavac
No, Tom, no worries, that neat feature you are talking about is still present. The comment you quoted refereed only to the installation process. Two previous versions prompted users, during installation, to change the home page of their web browsers to Bing.com, and to install Bing toolbar, etc. Those "features" are not related to the use of Streets & Trips software, and some users wondered why Microsoft introduced those options to the installer in the first place.
MisterMoonlight
Malaki86 said:
Quote:
Why would they need an additional 6 months to release a product that has 3 or 4 minor changes to it.
As what already been said, i guess they met major development problems.

My personnal opinion is that it is way better to get a stable product with less improvement than to add a lot of new gadgets to a product and make it crash every hour. For a critical product like this one, used for navigation, if it starts to crash or give bad routing estimate, etc, it is becoming to be useless in my case.

The biggest question is how much are you willing to pay for map update, which is the most important feature of a program like this? It is not so expensive if this could save you getting in a wrong route because of old maps, even for one single time...
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by MisterMoonlight
The biggest question is how much are you willing to pay for map update, which is the most important feature of a program like this? It is not so expensive if this could save you getting in a wrong route because of old maps, even for one single time...
Yes. For $39.95 you get Streets&Trips with a few minor improvements and new maps. For $79.95 you get new Garmin maps but no program.

...ken...
Newbee
I have "heard" that you could get Garmin lifetime maps for as little as $60 (59.99) every once in a while on Amazon. For an extra $20 which would you rather have? Of course, getting the new Garmin map updates to your PC is a huge challenge but they tell me it can be done.
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by Newbee
I have "heard" that you could get Garmin lifetime maps for as little as $60 (59.99) every once in a while on Amazon. For an extra $20 which would you rather have?
Well, if I'm a Streets&Trips user, that's pretty much a no-brainer.

Quote:
Of course, getting the new Garmin map updates to your PC is a huge challenge but they tell me it can be done.
Not to mention that if you want to use them for navigation on your PC the only program that can use them is discontinued, the last version they released is over a year old and it's so buggy that most people have reverted to the previous version which is another year older.

But, yes, you can usually get the map updates to your PC.

...ken...
flannigan
Ken: When you said "the only program that can use Garmin map updates on your pc is discontinued" , did you mean Map Source ?
Regards,
Mike Flannigan
Marvin Hlavac
Mike, Mapsource hasn't supported GPS in many versions, it is just a trip planning / map management software. Ken was referring to Garmin's PC navigation software, such as Garmin Mobile PC or Garmin nRoute. These are no longer supported by Garmin (even though many people keep on using them).
flannigan
Marvin:
Thanks for the lesson.
I'm curious, why did Garmin stop supporting them ?
The reason I ask is I have a sense that Garmin is "declining" from their lofty position relative to GPS.
Regards,
Mike
tcassidy
Garmin is king in the handheld and PDA market. That is where the money is. Software just doesn't make the profits that hardware does.

Terry
DanTheDriver
I think with the advent of smaller notebooks, PDA's, and the like the GPS software could be limitless.

Microsoft in all its wisdom truly can not be so blind to see what the future could hold for GPS software. I think if they were to open up the code as they did with their flightsim software there would be an incredible amount of truly fantastic add-ons developed by users. There is just so much that could be created I am sure. All kinds of tools for various industries and the consumer users. GPS software would far out score the the hardware market if it was given a chance to reach it's full potential. When 2011 was announced I was pretty excited to see that with all the fantastic ideas people had requested we would possibly see the Cadillac of the GPS world. I am a professional driver and love the ease of having my GPS on the same notebook as the other software I use daily. I did not have to have another device stuck to my dash or window some place. Every time I show other truckers, RV'ers, or my passengers what I am using they are just blown away. You could have a GPS as big or small screen as you wanted. It has more options and easier to program your route. It seems that S&T was brought to the front door and then MS was afraid to step over the door jam. They went to the edge and never stepped off. I love S&T and what it could really do for the GPS users. I just hope MS has not decided to give up on it. It would be really nice if a MS staff member would come on here and honestly tell us where MS is wanting, or not wanting, to go with S&T.

Again, S&T has such a huge potential. Please MS don't give up on it.
Ken in Regina
Terry is right. Garmin is king of the mass market. They don't like niche markets, at least not small niches. And the PC navigation business is a tiny niche compared to handhelds, commercial aviation and marine navigation and now the smartphone market.

They discovered with products like the iQue models, PDA software like Mobile XT and PC software like Mobile PC that the support load is really high and they don't sell large enough numbers to make money on it.

You can see this in the way they are rolling out their smartphone navigation products. They are doing it so the navigation app runs on the smartphone but you need an internet connections for the maps. They aren't loaded on your smartphone. That keeps the tech support to a minimum. Once the app is loaded and running, the user has no more problems. It's downloading maps and map updates that really gives them the most tech support headaches.

Mapsource and Basecamp on the PC are still being actively developed and supported. But as Terry said, they don't do navigation.

...ken...
malaki86
What truly disappointed me with the 2011 release was that it came out after Windows 7, which is being marketed for use on tablet PC's. A 10-12" tablet PC in a vehicle (at least a big vehicle) is a perfect solution. Instead, they release the exact same user interface that requires a large screen and is *NOT* built to be used on tablets & touchscreens.

Yes, I'll continue using Streets (v2009) for my overall planning of my routes, but I'll also continue to use CoPilot v8 for my actual navigation. You simply can't beat the touchscreen interface built into it. If CoPilot had the time-scheduling set up similar to Streets, I'd walk away from Streets at that point.

As for smartphones & navigation, there are alternatives to having a constant internet connection, with CoPilot being one of them. It's available for the iPhone, Android and Blackberry's (I think). The maps are loaded to the data card in the phone and do *NOT* require an internet connection 100% of the time. Also, CoPilot updates their maps monthly, which is a free download.
Ken in Regina
My comments about smartphones and maps requiring an internet connection were strictly about Garmin's smartphone software. They have chosen to go the way of some other navigation solutions like Google. Only the app goes on the phone and you have to have a connection to use the maps. There are probably a number of reasons they've decided to go that route, but tech support is definitely high on the list. They have so many problems with their map downloader software. They appear to have decided that it's easier to simply not put the maps on the devices than it is to get their map downloader software to work.

...ken...
RsH
Further to the Date/Time error in Streets & Trips 2011, I just generated an export GPX file to be able to give my wife a list of stops in a trip we are planning. The program put, into the GPX file, the following:

Quote:
</copyright><time>2011-02-16T23:53:29</time>

This turns out to be the time that the computer was showing, which is EST, of course, since I live in Toronto. Unfortunately, the correct entry would have been:

Quote:
</copyright><time>2011-02-17T04:53:29Z</time>

Because, based on the GPX standard, the time ALWAYS has to be Zulu or Greenwich Mean Time... so in the case of Toronto one needs to add 5 hours when it is standard time, and 4 hours when it is daylight savings time.

In addition, note that the time zone IS NOT displayed, so one does not know when the copyright really starts, since it could, in theory, be in anyone of 24 different time zones, ignoring those that are half hour zones. Was this time in Toronto, Los Angeles, Tokyo or Cairo? The entry as put out by the program thus is really meaningless, as well as wrong. The point of the standard is that Zulu time is only ONE specific time, and can be converted to the correct 'local' time easily.

Microsoft, PLEASE fix this!
hotwire
I agree, I haven't noticed much useful updating for the last few years except the added streets etc..

I can probably guess that they still haven't got around to allowing the user to add a standard stop time for all your stops without having to manually input each stop time even if they have the same time you want to use on all of them. And why not let the user be able to print your general address list without the directions.

These are important features that could save a user tons of time.

I'm into real estate and it is annoying when I have to manually go down a 20 or more stop route to put in a 15min stop for each one instead of being able to set that as a default stop time for all the stops.
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