GPS navigation

| October 26, 2011

Google Maps’ satellite view and Google Earth’s ability to realistically render the topography of most any location has been a boon to drivers scouting shipper facilities and parking. But for turn-by-turn directions, Earl Milroy, leased to C.R. England and based in Tempe, Ariz., relies on his Rand-McNally TND GPS unit on the dash, as do so many other operators.

To get that satellite view in his pocket, Milroy’s been contemplating an upgrade from his Blackberry device, on which Google’s satellite view is not accessible. “I’ve been thinking of getting an iPhone,” he says.

While Rand-McNally rep Amy Krouse says the company is working on a version of its Road Atlas for tablet devices, it’s holding back on full turn-by-turn functionality for phones while potential federal restrictions of in-cab use of small devices are under consideration.

It is possible to get GPS-style turn-by-turn directions on your phone specific to the truck. ALK Technologies, providers of the PC Miler navigation software, offers the CoPilot Truck application ($149.99, http://copilotlive.com/us/truck), with the look of a dash-mounted GPS.

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