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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old Sep 15th, 2013, 12:54 pm Thread Starter
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Bluetooth GPS

I have been using a very old Roadmate Magellan GPS for quite a few years, now it is time to upgrade. As I don't want to take my eyes off the road, I am looking for voice commands to come through my Bluetooth headset.

Do the new Bluetooth GPS have - spoken directions via my headset? My search for this answer is not very clear on the web sites I've visited.

Hopefully someone has info on this.


Thanks in advance.

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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old Sep 15th, 2013, 8:01 pm
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I have been trying to use my iPhone with a Uclear bluetooth headset with mixed results. I have taken this approach as I too was concerned about being distracted by the GPS screen. The cost of a dedicated GPS that is designed for exposure to the elements was also a factor.

One challenge with either the apple map application or google map application is the reliance on having a data connection for the map itself. In areas with spotty 3G coverage, you could run into troubles.

I have purchased the Navigon iPhone application as it comes with map data that loads onto your iPhone so you always have it available. Unfortunately, you have to start the application while you have a 3G connection so that it can authorize itself so don't wait until your lost in the middle of no where to turn it on.

I haven't been able to figure out how to easily preload a route into the Navigon software. Rarely do I take the shortest/fastest route when I ride as I am typically looking for scenic twisty roads to have fun on.

I haven't used the Navigon GPS application too much yet as I have been doing mostly local riding since I got it. In my testing, it seems workable.

I also play music from my iPhone through the Uclear bluetooth headset which works pretty well.

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old Sep 16th, 2013, 8:38 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW-Mike
I have been using a very old Roadmate Magellan GPS for quite a few years, now it is time to upgrade. As I don't want to take my eyes off the road, I am looking for voice commands to come through my Bluetooth headset.

Do the new Bluetooth GPS have - spoken directions via my headset? My search for this answer is not very clear on the web sites I've visited.

Hopefully someone has info on this.


Thanks in advance.
Yes, I have the Zumo 550 and I use the Bluetooth into the headset in my Schuberth Bluetooth headset helmet. Works, extremely well, loud and clear!

Larry
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old Sep 17th, 2013, 8:00 am
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It depends on the GPS as well as what BT headset you have. I currently use a Garmin Nuvi 1490LMT (Bluetooth) but it will not function with the Scala Rider Teamset Pro that I have. When I spoke to Garmin they told me the only BT GPS units that will communicate with a helmet headset are the Zumo line...

Best of luck!
Jeff

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old Sep 18th, 2013, 4:34 am
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I agree totally with the above. You have to try both Bluetooth devices together to be sure they will pair. Some helmet manufacturers qualify what 3rd party devices are known to work - but software and new products are continually changing. Even then I found some issues with my old setup:

I am still using an HP iPaq running Windows CE and TomTom maps. I drop it in my top pocket along with a BT GPS receiver and plug in my earbud. On batteries I can get about 7-8 hours for the combo.

I took it along to my biker shop to try out the BT helmets. I managed to get them paired then spotted (or heard) a BIG problem. Audio sent over BT is pretty demanding on the processor. What I found was when the short navigation instruction was transmitted, the first part was missed. I repeated the test using a short MP3 audio file and got the same result. My conclusion was the BT audio needed to sync itself and this took a short time. Useless for satnav if you miss those first 2 words! Newer BT units may now work better.

I then moved away from BT apart from linking the GPS receiver, because of the battery power. If you want BT freedom on the helmet, you need spare batteries/bike/and mains charger and the mentality to keep everything charged. I have now gone back to a helmet wire and plug, but I'll review a remote setup if battery drain gets better. Unfortunately BT is the worst for power drain and a simple f.m wireless link from bike to helmet would be better and would run for many hours off a small battery. BT options for helmets can be quite expensive and your choice of helmets can be limited. Now I always check a helmet to see if it has side pockets for mini speakers. Some Sport helmets have very little space to fit small speakers.

I have always been keen on audio only, not wanting the distraction of a screen in front of me. BUT the one thing which seems missing from all the new satnavs is a low level repeated audio 'beep' which lets you know the earbud link is o.k and the battery has not gone flat. There is no background noise clue to hear. They could easily do that to prove the GPS is still linked. At the moment, I hold my breath for the first instruction and if that is o.k I'm confident of the rest.

Another curious thing on the legals, is some countries ban the use of GPS speed camera location. As far as I know that comes under their vehicle regulations for anything fitted, but does not apply to what a rider wears or is not physically tethered or powered from the bike.



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