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CES 2010: Garmin News Leaks ahead of show
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Darren
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:05 pm    Post subject: CES 2010: Garmin News Leaks ahead of show Reply with quote

pocketgpsworld.comGarmin's product news has leaked ahead of the CES Show which begins this Thursday.

There is very little of real surprise here, the Zumo 665, Garmin's latest motorcycle specific PND is announced. ecoRoute HD is slightly more interesting. This is a cable that connects supported Garmin devices to the OBDII port fitted to all modern vehicles. This allows it to display vehicle specific data. The idea being you can see your fuel consumption and moderate your driving style in order to achieve the optimum fuel efficiency.

Finally, Garmin Voice Studio is unveiled. A PC application that will allow you to record your own voice instructions for upload to your Garmin nav. It won't provide Text To Speech functionality but it might be fun for a short while.

No specific news of the Nuvifone or any of the new Nuvifone models which were promised last year but we'll keep you posted.


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darrengsaw
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nothing overly groundbreaking there then.

Not sure I could be bothered to connect my nuvi to the car's brain, how simple actually is it to do, does it really give any benefits?

Maybe catching up with TomTom's routing might be more useful......
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Darren
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

darrengsaw wrote:
Not sure I could be bothered to connect my nuvi to the car's brain, how simple actually is it to do, does it really give any benefits?

Very simple, the OBDII socket is normally under the steering wheel and easily located. It's the socket that the dealer connects their diagnostic information to.

There are already some nice gadgets for OBDII. I have a ScanGauge on my dash which reports all manner of data.

So the Garmin solution is fairly simple, the socket is always by necessity accessible and so the cable is easily connected but a Bluetooth solution would have been neater requiring less cables which I hate.
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darrengsaw
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, that is quite interesting, I had visions of delving around hunting for some obscure port under the rocker cover or something!! Laughing
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mikealder
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OBD-II was manditory for all Petrol engined cars sold in Europe since 2001 and Diesels since 2003 although depending upon the manufacturer some cars were equipped with the capability earlier than this, for more more information have a look at WiKi the diagnostic port is normally in the cars interiour, footwell, center console, under the dashboard.

An OBD-II reader is great fun for pin pointing faults with a car or simply watching gauges on a PDA pffering a digital dashboard, it will be interesting to see what Garmin offer via the interface but a cabled install is a bad move, I already own and use a Bluetooth OBD-II port reader ICW an old PDA for displaying the parameters I am interested in.

Anything adding cables around the driver in a car isn't clever for vehicle safety and often the diagnostic port is covered by trim that needs to be removed to gain access to the plug negating a longer term connection as it simply doesn't look good with bits of trim missing and cables all over the car - Mike
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Kar98
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

darrengsaw wrote:
how simple actually is it to do


On my 97 Golf, the OBD-II port is under a cover right next to the ashtray.

Quote:
does it really give any benefits?


No more than existing gadgets like upshift indicator, tach, trip meter and MPG gauge would. Much more interesting would be a recorder/calculator that actually checks how much fuel is used in real volume, not on average. I might be getting 35 mpg on average taking a longer route, but use much less actual fuel by volume on the shorter one.
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gatorguy6996
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 06, 2010 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Garmin's new Ecoroute HD functionality does offer a bit more than what you may think. One of the biggies is that it can report on problems with various drivetrain, emissions, and charging system components, and it can be used to reset trouble codes. And Darren, it is wireless as far as I know. Uses bluetooth to transmit from the plug in dongle to your nuvi.
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Darren
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 06, 2010 11:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

gatorguy6996 wrote:
And Darren, it is wireless as far as I know. Uses bluetooth to transmit from the plug in dongle to your nuvi.

Ah that's good if correct, my source mentioned availability of the cable but this may be confusion on her part?
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gatorguy6996
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did confirm, and the dongle is wireless.

I also found a pretty nice explanation of EcoRoute HD:
Here
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Darren
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 11:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, that's much better! If it can access any of the standard OBDII and CanBus data points then it would be very attractive to me. Being able to monitor functions such as Traction Battery charge and RPM is a useful aid to extracting the best possible fuel consumption from a Prius and the reason I use a Scangauge now.

Excellent as the Scangauge is, a large colour screen with proper dials to relay the info is much better but I fear this will be rather limited in ecoRoute. We shall see.
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lbendlin
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 2:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We did an interview with Garmin about the OBD-II so watch this space (ahem).
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stuartb
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 11:33 am    Post subject: I hope some of it is disabled whilst moving Reply with quote

I hope they disable some of the displays whilst moving. Things like "scores" for today would otherwise be a needless distraction from safer driving. Satnav makers should recognise their responsibility to avoid creating further distractions. Not sure why anyone would want a rev counter on their satnav. Are their many cars without rev counters now? Intake temperature? There must be a huge market for that kind of info.

Does anyone else feel like the satnav companies have rather lost their way? Feels a bit like Microsoft now - they keep adding feature after feature whilst basic stuff still doesn't work properly. In the case of satnav it's the data where effort is required. I appreciate they are different companies but Garmin, Tom Tom et al should be doing more with teh data providers to fix core data quality issues and not inventing toys.

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Darren
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 11:46 am    Post subject: Re: I hope some of it is disabled whilst moving Reply with quote

stuartb wrote:
I hope they disable some of the displays whilst moving. Things like "scores" for today would otherwise be a needless distraction from safer driving.

Perhaps we should disable speedo's too?
Quote:
Not sure why anyone would want a rev counter on their satnav. Are their many cars without rev counters now? Intake temperature? There must be a huge market for that kind of info.

Quite a few modern cars lack rev counters. As for all the various other data points, there is a large market for solutions that display them. If you Google OBDII you will find a vast market with dedicated OBDII driven instruments and colour displays that can be configured like the Garmin but at three times the cost.

However, SatNav manufacturers are clearly lost for ideas I agree. I wish they'd invest time in better navigation and not MP3, video players, photo viewers and hands free phone functions.

But then doing so does not get them media coverage or USP's in sales ads.
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stuartb
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 4:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The speedo is a legal requirement and given the existence of speed limits we probably need them anyway to confirm that we're within the law should we wish to be.

But aside from that I would agree that we would perhaps be better off without them. Our current environment means that there is pressure to focus far too much attention on speedometers and not on what's going on outside the car.

I don't know about you but I would rather drivers around me were concentrating on driving hazards and not trying to improve their economy driving acceleration "score". Fine to look at it when stopped if that floats your boat - which was what I was trying to convey. Sorry if that wasn't clear.

Regards
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Darren
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was playing devils advocate Wink I liked Saab's black panel idea where only the speedo was lit at night. Other instruments and gauges would only illuminate if there was an issue with the system they monitored.

We should consider doing that all the time with the increasing use of digital panels and not just at night.
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