Hmmm, every now and then you come across an item that could just revolutionise or change the way that you do things.
The GPS is a staple now in most cars with several different types available; you can have handheld, portable and in-dash versions of them. the only problem seems to be that you have to update the maps on them every now and then and they well, don’t have much use beyond telling you where to turn. The latest incarnations have support to plug in your iPod and play some video formats to keep the kids happy if you don’t need the GPS at that time.
Pictured above is the GPS that I have currently, the VMS Touring 700HD. A great unit that has Australia wide on road and off road maps in it, a big 7 inch touch screen but I can’t plug it into my Mac to back it up or anything like that because the unit runs Windows CE 6.0 which can’t be read by OS X. This unit basically retails for just under $700.00.
Then along comes October 2012 and Apple release the iPad Mini. Now imagine this:
Running a GPS mapping program on a 7.95 inch screen 🙂
The software already exists in Mud-Maps MudMapHD app; the advent of the smaller iPad has perhaps unwittingly launched, I believe Apple into the GPS market.
The only real prerequisite for it to work fully is that you have a 3G iPad (the new mini 16Gb model is fine); and remember that the VMS unit is just under $700 to buy. So the 3G/4G 16Gb iPad Mini at $509 is quite acceptable; then on top of that you have the Mud Map HD application at $149.99 bringing the total to around $650.00.
To make it even sweeter the 3G/4G iPad Mini has a GPS receiver in it so you don’t even need a telco sim to use the functionality.
At the moment I am seriously considering selling the VMS unit and getting an iPad Mini and the Mud Maps HD app in it’s place. Mounting brackets for the iPad Mini will come out over the next few months as people use them for this task. Of course the unit will have more uses than as a GPS as well, sending email, music and movies etc. and it’s one less item on a trip that would need to be packed.
I’m liking this idea the more I think about it… 🙂