The good folks at Garmin gave us a ride from the Las Vegas airport to our hotel to show off its new GPS units, and we were especially impressed with the nuvi 800 (press release)–what they claim is the first GPS to respond to “natural speech” voice commands.
Voice-rec isn’t brand-new in the GPS world. (Magellan, for example has offered it for a while.) But the nuvi 800 is very slick. It (almost) always got the commands on the first try and doesn’t require a verbal setup warning that you’re about to give it a command. Just say the names of items on the home screen and on following screens to navigate into the menus.
While the map is up and you’re driving, you can ask for any data that applies, for example, like a list of nearby coffee shops, and reroute the nav program if you have an emergency craving for a Vente Americano decaf.
The 800 was one of five new products announced at CES. Another that caught our eye was the nuvi 5000 – which sports a roomy 5.2-inch screen and souped up access to MSN direct—with info like traffic information, fuel prices, weather reports, and now enhanced movie listings, news and stock updates. We wonder about the wisdom or reading the news while you’re driving, but the news briefs are just a few sentences that Garmin says are sized for skimming while your at a stoplight or stuck in a traffic jam.
For getting out of the car, Garmin introduced the
Want more? Check out our entire CES 2008 coverage here.