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GPS use in cars not widespread

By: staff

Date: 2007-08-30

Results of a survey released in early August indicate that 17% of U.S. use GPS services in cars.

This level is low, according to Milton Ellis, vice president of technology for Harris Interactive of Rochester, New York. A lower price, he feels, would likely increase use. Current in-car systems cost US $1,000 to $2,000. Handheld units vary between about $250 and $800. Ellis says the "sweet spot" for popular technologies is somewhere in the $200-$500 range.

The survey polled 1,325 adults between May 29 and June 5 of this year. Interestingly, it also showed that 83 percent of respondents had looked up web maps for directions during the 30 days prior to the poll.

Ellis reckoned that network service providers and vendors of GPS systems should do more to educate consumers about the advantages of real-time navigation and traffic information systems.

81% of survey respondents said they found GPS devices extremely useful when they missed a turn and needed to be guided back to their route.

Remarkably, poll respondents who had cell phones with the GPS feature had a very poor awareness of the availability of navigation services. Even more remarkable was that only 15% of those who had a cell phone said they were interested in getting GPS on their next cell phone.

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