- SPECIAL REPORTS
- THE MAGAZINE
Portable Global Positioning Systems (GPS) with Bluetooth wireless networking capabilities became more affordable today as DeLorme, the innovative digital mapping and GPS company, announced the release of its latest Earthmate GPS receiver, a compact, ultra low-power USB device featuring high performance and flexibility never-before-seen in a GPS receiver.
Available mid-April, the highly anticipated DeLorme Earthmate GPS receiver, smaller than a business card, gives customers an affordable alternative to pricey in-car navigation systems that average around $2,000. The combination of Earthmate GPS and the included DeLorme Street Atlas USA mapping software, connected to a USB laptop PC, enables users to see their exact location on detailed street-level maps, anywhere in U.S. The Earthmate GPS with Street Atlas USA software will sell for only $129.95. The GPS draws power from USB laptops so no batteries are necessary.
Add-on GPS Accessories Make the Earthmate GPS Expandable for Years to Come The new Earthmate is the first GPS receiver to offer multiple expansion capabilities for extended functionality. This June, DeLorme will offer a rechargeable Bluetooth wireless docking station that attaches to the Earthmate GPS receiver allowing customers to use Bluetooth-enabled PDAs, laptops, and Tablet PCs to wirelessly receive GPS signals in-vehicle. Passengers with a Bluetooth-enabled laptop or PDA sitting in the front or back seat of the car can wirelessly connect to the Earthmate GPS receiver on the dashboard and track their exact position on detailed street-level maps. The Bluetooth docking station, sold together with the Earthmate GPS, will retail for under $300.
Also available will be a PDA PowerPack that connects to the Earthmate GPS allowing a variety of handheld computers to be used with the GPS. Using DeLorme’s XMapÒ Handheld software, customers will be able to track their positions in real time using their Pocket PC and Palm OS handheld computer or a Smartphone. With DeLorme Topo USA 4.0 software, people can further expand the utility of the Earthmate for off-road in-vehicle and walking applications, essentially turning their PDA into a handheld GPS.
Key Features of the New Earthmate GPS Receiver Include:
- NMEA-compliant GPS receiver powered by USB laptops
- The latest low-power GPS chipset from industry-leading SiRF Technologies
- WAAS-enabled (details below)
- 2-5 meter accuracy with included Street Atlas USA software for driving usage.
- Sub-meter capable for stationary land-use applications with DeLorme professional GPS post-processing software (available separately)
- Full U.S. coverage on street-level maps with included Street Atlas USA software
- Flexible design enables use with additional DeLorme accessories including the
- Bluetooth wireless docking station and PDAs
- Address-to-address routing (no Web access required)
- Rapid real-time GPS signal updates (1-second intervals)
- Ability to extract the complete map database to a laptop PC
- Voice-recognition technology for issuing spoken commands and receiving spoken turn-by-turn driving directions
- Convenient back-on-track routing helps users stay on course
- 4.2 million places of interest – all searchable using the convenient Radar search feature
- Searchable exit services including RV-friendly stops
“The beauty of our GPS solution is the flexibility it provides. Use it today with your USB laptop. If you don’t have a PDA now but are thinking of getting one, you’ll be able to use it that way when you are ready. And for those looking for an affordable wireless Bluetooth GPS solution, the docking station further leverages the small initial investment in the Earthmate,” comments David DeLorme, DeLorme’s founder and CEO. “Now a family traveling on vacation can keep the kids occupied in the back seat with a wireless PDA, tracking the trip in real time. This device is so advanced it will also be possible for surveyors and land-use professionals to realize sub-meter accuracy using separate GPS post-processing software currently being developed by DeLorme.”
Includes Detailed Street-level Maps for the Entire U.S
The Earthmate GPS receiver includes the newest version of the award-winning software Street Atlas USA 2003. Customers will be able to track themselves in real-time on split-screen maps showing detailed street-level and wide-area positions at the same time. Issue spoken commands such as "Where am I?"and "How far to the next turn?" and the computer answers. A new radar setting lets customers find the nearest conveniences from their current position and provides directions. With the addition of XMap Handheld software, users can GPS track using maps on Pocket PC or Palm OS handheld computers.
Increased Accuracy Within 2- 5 meters
The new Earthmate GPS receiver offers the latest WAAS capabilities (Wide Area Augmentation System). Administered by the Federal Aviation Administration and the Department of Transportation, WAAS is a free correction system, currently available only in North America, that receives signals from GPS satellites, corrects the signals for increased accuracy, then transmits the signals to be picked up by WAAS-capable GPS receivers such as Earthmate GPS. WAAS narrows the accuracy of the GPS receiver to within 2-5 meters. Accessing the GPS satellite system and WAAS is free of charge.