Easi-Nav GPS Navigator

18 Jan 2006

Product: Global positioning software
Price: €95 incl Vat
Figuring out the Easi-Nav GPS Navigator from Shannon-based engineering firm NavSync is a little like being handed the controls of the space shuttle and being told bring her back to Earth. In fairness, if the review copy I’d been handed had instructions for the Info Map mapping software that came with the device my impressions might have been different.

It had been my intention to drive 30 miles from the country back to Dublin and use the software to track my movements. It didn’t go to plan. You may run into problems loading the software onto a computer. You need WinZip compression software to open up the drivers, as well as a DVD drive to play the software. When we finally got it running our office IT manager had to help me set up a new Com port on the computer to make it work. The Easi-Nav GPS Navigator itself is a little device that you are supposed to hook into the USB port of your computer.

When the GPS receiver was up and running everything seemed to be working perfectly. The device interacted with the satellites zooming through the sky and every second a stream of data coordinates flowed across the screen. Marvellous!

Unfortunately, the Navigator 4 Europe mapping software that I was handed with the Easi-Nav GPS Navigator didn’t have an instructions booklet, which made using it difficult. If you’re familiar with applications such as Google Earth you would be longing for their simplicity. Actually, it’s not too different from Google Earth only it comes with a whole lot of other features. From what I could figure out, the software interacts perfectly with the Easi-Nav GPS Navigator, which can route you down to street level in terms of locations. The software also helps you to identify key landmarks and utilities but also to plan routes which makes it ideal for car journeys.

It is clear the GPS Navigator is an impressive piece of kit ideal for planning journeys and fixing locations. The innocent off-the-shelf appearance of the product is, however, a little misleading. I feel the device and the accompanying software would be better aimed at individuals with plenty of technical knowledge and know-how rather than someone with a passing interest in GPS. In other words, initial set-up could have and should have been a lot easier.

By John Kennedy