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New Maps From Microsoft

Techstination feature for Wednesday, September 1, 2004

New maps from Microsoft. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Microsoft is out with the 2005 edition of Streets and Trips…and what's new this year…is a bundle…

"We're introducing this year Streets and Trips 2005 with GPS Locator, which is our Streets and Trips software with a GPS hardware receiver."

Product manager Danielle Damasius. The receiver plugs into the USB port of a notebook…or into a Bluetooth cradle…for a wireless connection sold as an add on. The set up is a portable alternative…to built in vehicle navigation systems….and is probably less expensive…even when you include the price of a notebook PC. But there is one drawback to Microsoft's package…

"Streets and Trips generates turn by turn directions for any route that you plan. We don't have voice prompting, I'll tell you that. So if you're traveling you can watch yourself progress on your trip, on your route."

Which is fine if you have a passenger along to read the turn by turn directions. Voice prompts are available in Delorme's Street Atlas USA and the more expensive CoPilot Live for laptops from ALK. It adds real time traffic and remote vehicle tracking capability. One advantage Microsoft has…

"Streets and Trips 2005 comes with Pocket Streets for your Pocket PC and your Smartphone."

Both are GPS enabled as well. You can find Microsoft's bundle for under 120 dollars….with the software alone selling for under forty dollars. You can find us on the Web at Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.