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harman/kardon upgrades Guide+Play GPS

updated 10:05 am EDT, Tue October 30, 2007

Guide Plus Play x10 Series

Revamping its Guide+Play mapping units, harman/kardon today released three new models that expand the size options as well as the onboard hardware and software. The GPS-810 (pictured) is the largest of the line and adds to the screen size at 4.3 inches, making the device easier to read from a distance; it also includes the full software suite, which adds text-to-speech readouts of street names as well as a JPEG viewer, the option of Clear Channel's real-time traffic service, and playing back the latest Windows Media DRM audio and video stored locally on an SD or SDHC card. As the company's flagship, the 810 also includes the signature wireless rotary controller that began the line as well as Bluetooth speakerphone use and an FM transmitter for wirelessly linking audio to the car stereo. It ships with 2GB of built-in North American maps, support for both Macs and PCs over USB, and should be available in November for $600.

The GPS-510 is intended for users who need less of the music-oriented features of the 810 but still want the core experience, according to the company. It sheds the wireless controller, Bluetooth, and FM hardware but keeps the full audio and video format support as well as text-to-speech and real-time traffic. JPEG photo viewing is the only software-based feature absent in the slightly smaller, 4-inch device. It ships at the same time as the 810 but at a considerably lower $450.

The firm's most basic model receives its own upgrade. The GPS-310 adds text-to-speech and supports SDHC while reducing the feature set to keep the price in check, such as limiting playback to MP3 and WMA songs as well as stripping real-time traffic options. The 310 ships next month for $350.

by MacNN Staff




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