For a little while, I have been looking for a GPS unit for my car. I didn't want to buy a new stereo, so I was mainly interested in a portable unit. I also was interested in one that had traffic information available, as our current one in our van doesn't, and it doesn't help when the route takes you through a traffic jam.
I settled on the Garmin Nuvi 680 because it has some key features:
- Handsfree bluetooth profile (including displaying phone address book
- traffic information. (The Nuvi 680 using MSN Direct for this information. This allows the expected time delay to be displayed on the unit.)
- MP3 player
There are several things that I noticed about the Nuvi 680
- The Nuvi is a lot faster at calculating a route, than the Honda navigation system
- The list of businesses/restaurants are better categoriezed on the Nuvi than on the Honda navigation system
- The Nuvi was able to keep the GPS signal better than the Honda. (The Honda navigation thought that were driving through the fields about 1/2 mile off Interstate 5.)
There still is one things about a portable GPS that I don't like. None of these navigation units look like they belong in the car. Ideally, I would like these to look stock. I think that the Garmin and Volvo partnership is a start. Unfortunately this solution doesn't look stock. It would be great, if Volvo put the mounting in the dash, instead of on top of it.
I would love to see a partnership with multiple auto manufacturers and GPS makers, to standardize on a interface and mounting mechanism. This would allow customers to change GPS units as the technology changes.