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Braff-n-MandaRue

Other than Garmin

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I was sitting around at work, bored, and I got to thinking about handheld GPS units.  

 

I realized that I don't really know who makes handheld GPS units anymore, other than Garmin.  Magellan maybe, but they don't seem to active. I remember Lowrance and DeLorme having a few out. Maybe even Rand McNally had a handheld at one time. I believe Bushnell had or has a pretty basic GPS too. Wasn't there a geomate jr or something around for a bit too?

 

Anyway, my real question is what companies are in the handheld gps market these days?  Are there any other than Garmin that put out new models or support models they still have on the market?  

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DeLorme was bought by Garmin. Garmin coopted the inReach line, but the Earthmate handheld GPS is done. So no more DeLorme. 

 

Magellan has stopped producing handhelds and now focuses on automotive and ORV/ATV models, which aren't really up to the same task as a handheld.

 

Lowrance seems to be only making marine / fish finder devices now.

 

I seem to recall there being a handful of smaller / other GPS manufacturers selling units outside the US, but I can't remember their names or how successful they are today. It seems that Garmin has the market to itself, though the market itself has become more niche in recent days with many people using their phones or buying smaller activity trackers over a full-fledged GPS receiver. 

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I've looked around on Amazon to see what types of other GPSr's are available.  Bushnell does have a few basic units that can save a few waypoints and use trackback type features to get you back to your vehicle.  They also seem to be limited to just showing Lat/Long coordinates, but I'm partial to UTM myself.  There are also several Golf GPS units by Bushnell as well as a company called Bad Elf.  

 

Just not as much of a selection out there anymore.  I'm happy with what my Garmin can do.  Plus there are several apps I can use on my phone, but none of them I really like, or maybe it's using the phone I don't like.  

 

A shame really, I always enjoyed the new models come out with their new features to see what else they could pack in.  They were getting a little on the expensive side.  They have gotten to the point where they are almost like a smartphone, just without the phone.  Why purchase two devices when one can do it all.  

 

The competition made it interesting for a while.  

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Garmin is still competing with smartphone users, so even though they might have the monopoly on handheld receivers, they won't be complacent if they want a market to exist in the future.

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13 hours ago, Braff-n-MandaRue said:

Why purchase two devices when one can do it all.  

 

We used to think that way.    A couple reasons...

When the other 2/3rds comes with me (most times in terrain 2.5+), sometimes she uses her phone.

She needs a protective case, other than the cutesy Avengers silicone back cover. 

 - My GPSr cost 300 bucks twelve years ago and still running like new.  Her phone costs a grand,  is no where near as rugged, so its gotta be protected.

She needs a way to charge her phone, which means an add-on of some type.

 - Many weigh a heck-of-a-lot more than just two AAs.

If we're somewhere we've never been, she'd have to know if there's no coverage (to load caches for offline use), or her phone's a paperweight.

She had to buy a special pair of gloves to use her phone in the Winter.  Her comfy ski gloves won't work.

Her phone is just as "accurate" most times, so these days when we're together we usually use both.     :)

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