If you were waiting for GPS prices to come into reach, here is what you were waiting for
MapMyIndia got popular last year, when they launched their NAV 300 priced at Rs 22,900. The journey over the last one year has been both to reduce the price and also to make it a bit more efficient and friendly to the user. They did this with the MapMyIndia Light Edition. It is not only light on the pocket, Rs 11,900 for the unit and all-India maps, but also very nicely made, and comes with one of the best GPS mounting kits that I have used in a long time. It features maps of 401 cities in India on a street level and a very fast locking GPS, which left me amazed.
The usual GPS features that tell you your current running speed and the points of interest around you (ATMs, hospitals, emergency services, restaurants) are all built-in. A unique feature which I saw for the first time on a GPS is the snooze feature—you can snooze your GPS when you exit the car, and wake it up from sleep when you return, to cut out the boot up and lock time. At just about 12.5 mm thickness, you can fit it in your back pocket, or take it with you hiking (though no kits for using it as a wrist mount are provided).
The major problem that I had while testing this piece was that the battery would not last more than 2 hours. Also, one misses a safe mode (this means you should not be able to key into it to locate a destination while driving).
The plastic body is finished well and the display is nicely done (in very bright sunlight this may have a problem, but night- and daytime views are great). The Bluetooth is gone and the video player is also missing—I think they were useless features anyway, and were just loading up the price.
The micro SD card that holds the data just pops out at a flick, which is a bit dangerous, but overall the Navigator (Light) is built brilliantly and comes at a price point that makes it affordable for all car users. If you were waiting for GPS prices to fall, here is what you were waiting for. More info here.
Sapra is The Big Geek at System3. He can be reached at email@example.com. He also blogs at TheBigGeek.com