Summer is a time when many people hit the road... There are plenty of gadgets out there that can make traveling easier on you and the rest of your family. Electronics reporter, Brian Westbrook, shows us the latest travel gadgets to make your time in the car more fun.
GO 930 GPS navigation system -- TomTom
"Portable navigation with gas prices"
TomTom's latest portable GPS receiver simplifies making your way through an unfamiliar town – there's only one thing easier. New features include intelligent routing based on time-of-day and historical data and an advanced lane guidance system showing what specific lane for those tricky highway merges. Make the most of your trip with a updated fuel price locator. Ask TomTom for the lowest-priced gas and the 930 will take you there. With new features and TomTom's proven easy-to-use interface the only thing easier than getting around with the GO 930 is, well… a chauffeur. ($500, available soon)
"Basic navigation system"
Sometimes you're not looking for bells-and-whistles, rather a simple point-to-point GPS system that will get you to your destination. The Garmin Nuvi line accomplishes this objective in the $200-price range. Portable and with pre-loaded maps, this unit also plays MP3 music and books on tape for those long solo journeys. ($200, Amazon.com)
Navigon 7100 GPS
"Feature-rich, low price GPS Nav"
Okay, so it wasn't the easiest to use – and requires some getting used to – but the Navigon 7100 has a few strengths over its more popular TomTom and Garmin rivals. With included lifetime traffic subscription and built-in Bluetooth – the Navigon weighs in at a few hundred bucks cheaper. These guys have been making in-car systems for the major automakers for years, only recently releasing standalone systems. If you have a bit of patience, you can save a decent chunk of change. My recommendation? Splurge on an equivalent TomTom or Garmin unit and save yourself the learning curve.
Balaznna Digital Luggage Scale
"Save airline baggage fees"
With nearly every major carrier charging increasing fees for baggage – it's important to reduce the quantity and weight of your checked luggage. This handy scale (despite the funny name), is perfect for weighing your bags before leaving the house. Extreme souvenir shoppers (i.e. my Mother), may find devoting a half-pound to carting this scale around worth the 1/100th of their baggage allotment. ($22, Amazon.com)
TRAVEL TECH FOR KIDS:
iFrogz iPod Case
Crayola Kids Camcorder
For the aspiring film-maker, Crayola introduces a kid-friendly camcorder – it records video and stills with kid-friendly ease. ($60, Amazon.com)