The base price is $4125 (US) or if you need greater GPS accuracy, you can buy it bundled with Trimble’s GPS Pathfinder ProXT or ProXH bluetooth connected GPS receivers for $5495 or $6495, respectively. And you might want a few accessories, like an office docking station (pictured at left for $749), vehicle charger ($189), ruggedized keyboard ($395) and some other things as well. I don’t do any GIS stuff, but I presume you’ll need some kind of Trimble software to manage your GPS data collection efforts, that can add up quickly as well. If you want one like I do and happen to have $5-10K to blow, check out the Yuma Ruggedized Tablet PC at the Trimble Store.
Google Earth 5.2 Released
Digital Mapping Duopoly
By way of Geology.com, the Wall Street Journal reports on some interesting news related to GPS and even our beloved Google Maps / Google Earth. Apparently there are only two games in town when it comes to data providers for online and digital mapping products that are used by the aformentioned software as well as your GPS navigation system: Netherlands-based Tele Atlas NV, and Chicago-based Navteq Corp. (Photo by Websteria)
In October, Nokia bought Navteq for …wait for it… $8.1 billion. They plan to use the technology as the basis for a business model involving selling advertising tied to your phone’s location. A month later TomTom, a maker of GPS products, beat out rival Garmin and bought Tele Atlas for $4.2 billion. Were either of these companies really worth that much money? It doesn’t appear like it. Thus concern has been raised that the new owners of the technology might be in a position to hurt competitors by raising prices. We will have to see how things pan out.