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Garmin 2017 Drive 51/61 series

It looks like Garmin has introduced the 2017 models: https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/cOnTheRoad-cAutomotive-p1.html

I have not figured out what all the changes are, but one thing I see on the DriveLuxe and DriveAssist and DriveSmart is this: "Built-in Wi-Fi® for easy map and software updates". Also looks like they integrate with the Garmin Smart watches. And they have apparently dropped the LMT and LMTHD designations now showing as DriveLuxe 51-S.

Comments

  • alanb 353 Points
    edited January 4
    Actually what I said about LMT is incorrect .... shows as LMT-S.

    It is interesting how they are pushing updates directly to the device over WiFi. Express not necessary apparently. I wonder how they will deal with internal storage and SD cards?
  • Boyd 1737 Points
    alanb said:

    I wonder how they will deal with internal storage and SD cards?

    You will probably see a friendly error message on the screen in the morning, informing you to purchase an SD card to turn your brick back into a GPS. :))

    But seriously, it's about time Garmin added wifi to their devices. Will be interesting to see more info on these in the coming months as users get their hands on them.
  • alanb 353 Points
    edited January 4
    It is kind of hard to tell from the Garmin site, but I am wondering if Garmin has eliminated the FM and HD traffic receivers on these devices and is now only offering Live traffic via the Smartphone Link. Not that the non-live Garmin traffic is worth much to begin with, but if they are no longer including receivers on the new models, it probably spells the beginning of the end for this type of traffic service. Remember the good ol' MSN Direct traffic receiver?
  • Boyd 1737 Points
    Yes, I actually bought one of those MSN receivers for my Nuvi 5000. But I returned it after a few days when I found how terrible the coverage was. ;)

    It appears that Live Traffic is now free with the smartphone link app but weather radar, traffic cameras and live parking cost extra. Wasn't traffic an in-app purchase before?

    I still have a real problem with this whole concept though. Why do we need the dedicated GPS device at all? Why doesn't Garmin just give us an app that does the same thing on our big screen iOS or Android phone? The only answer I can think of is that Garmin makes its money from hardware, and they are not going down without a fight. But that day is surely coming…. especially when the GPS requires a smartphone for some of its basic functions.

    Based on posts we've seen in the past, one market for dedicated devices is people who don't have and don't want smartphones. One of these new devices is not going to appeal to them.
  • alanb 353 Points
    You are right about the Live Traffic Boyd! I just updated my android Smartphone Link and my 3597 now has live traffic (I have only the free version of Smartphone Link and didn't have Live Traffic before the update).

    Yes, I think there is still a niche for the standalone GPS, but Garmin needs to offer a full feature app for both android and iphone. Viago could have been that with just some small improvements.
  • alanb 353 Points
    edited January 4
    Another interesting aspect of the WiFi update capability is that it doesn't require a mass storage mode connection to a computer. So I wonder if Garmin has included some type of menu driven file management system for uploading files (GPX or GPI for example) and for deleting files. It would be a bummer if they eliminate mass storage mode without some way to delete unwanted voice files, etc. I guess we will have to wait until the user manuals are published before we get answers like this.
  • Zemartelo 102 Points
    edited January 5
    Thank you for the heads up about the live traffic being free. Turned it on my phone and give it a try to see if its worthwhile to have it on my phone. :)
  • Zemartelo 102 Points
    And Garmin continues with the absurd pricing of those units. With smartphones offering compelling options alot cheaper it still baffles me why Garmin continues with these high prices for these devices.
    Are the sales still that high that Garmin feels no pressure to lower them??

    And I will wait to see some reviews to see whats new with the new crop. Perhaps the 2016 models will become more affordable. I've been interested in the driveassist model.
  • Boyd 1737 Points
    Zemartelo said:

    Thank you for the heads up about the live traffic being free. Turned it on my phone and give it a try to see if its worthwhile to have it on my phone. :)

    Are you saying that traffic is now free in the iOS Garmin StreetPilot app? Would make sense if they are opening it up on the dedicated units. I already paid for it though. ;)

  • Zemartelo 102 Points
    I meant the garmin link app. I am going to check it out to see if it makes any difference on my Nuvi otherwise Im not going to bother with the link to my phone.
  • AndreyT 104 Points
    edited January 13
    Garmin's device Bluetooth connectivity is implemented very incompetently. When BT is eabled in the Garmin device, it repeatedly attempts to establish both Voice and Data connection to the smartphone. Meanwhile, many of us use our own built-in BT hands-free voice support in our cars. We don't want to use Garmin device for BT Voice. However, there's no way to tell Garmin device to just stop trying to establish BT Voice connection: it just keeps trying, trying and trying. Most of the time my car manages to capture BT Voice connection first, preventing the Garmin device from doing so, and everything works as it should. But occasionally my car has trouble connecting and Garmin device jumps in and attempts to highjack the BT Voice connection for itself. This is terrible.

    The only solution to this poor implementation is to disable BT support on Garmin device completely and forget about the existence of Smartphone Link app. Until Garmin learns how to implement BT support properly, any devices that depend critically on Smartphone Link app are officially unusable.
  • Boyd 1737 Points
    That's pretty bad. Never use bluetooth on my Dezl 760, it is not compatible with the iPhone smartlink app and my car already has a much nicer hands-free phone system. And myNuvi 3550 doesn't even have bluetooth. On older Nuvi's, such as the 3790, my impression was that enabling bluetooth also showed the device down in general.
  • truckinguy 108 Points
    Boyd said:

    Yes, I actually bought one of those MSN receivers for my Nuvi 5000. But I returned it after a few days when I found how terrible the coverage was. ;)

    It appears that Live Traffic is now free with the smartphone link app but weather radar, traffic cameras and live parking cost extra. Wasn't traffic an in-app purchase before?

    I still have a real problem with this whole concept though. Why do we need the dedicated GPS device at all? Why doesn't Garmin just give us an app that does the same thing on our big screen iOS or Android phone? The only answer I can think of is that Garmin makes its money from hardware, and they are not going down without a fight. But that day is surely coming…. especially when the GPS requires a smartphone for some of its basic functions.

    Based on posts we've seen in the past, one market for dedicated devices is people who don't have and don't want smartphones. One of these new devices is not going to appeal to them.

    Still hung up on why one would use a dedicated gps device.... I have many smart phones and would never use them for my serious navigation use still. They do what they were intended to do for me.. make calls..some email checks,internet stuff... They just don't make the grade in the end..
    You must be in a situation were you don't see the need of dedicated devices.. I don't want to hash over this beat to death subject.. but like Hillary missed the tone of the country and lost I think you seem to miss the tone of Garmin and it's devices...and how the world uses them.. Garmin it seems to have a grip on the world and it's needs and Garmin needs at this point in time anyway..

  • Boyd 1737 Points
    So I'm Hillary and Garmin is Trump? Wow….

    I currently own a Nuvi 205, Nuvi 5000, Nuvi 3550, Dezl 760, GPSMap 60csx, Montana 600 and a Garmin GLO not to mention many others that I no longer have. So I've "paid my dues" and think I understand the point of dedicated devices.

    I'm just not impressed with the newer generations from Garmin and don't see where they would offer anything for me. Regarding the 2017 "Drive" models, look at the "key features" here: https://explore.garmin.com/en-US/drive/#product-drivesmart

    WI-FI
    SMART NOTIFICATIONS
    BLUETOOTH HANDS-FREE CALLING
    VOICE-ACTIVATED NAVIGATION
    LIVE PARKING
    LIVE TRAFFIC

    Four out of those six require a phone. That was the point I was trying to make above. Doesn't seem very innovative, and it makes me wonder why we need the Garmin device at all.
  • privet01 145 Points
    Boyd said:

    .... makes me wonder why we need the Garmin device at all.

    "need" is not the issue. It's "want". Some people prefer a dedicated device for reasons that may be real or imagined. Other's do not, also for reasons that may be real or imagined.
  • bobsofpa 10 Points
    There are some of us who do not have a smartphone.
  • Boyd 1737 Points
    edited January 30
    bobsofpa said:

    There are some of us who do not have a smartphone.

    That is fine, and is part of the point I was trying to make. The "key features" of these new Garmin devices mostly require the use of a smartphone. So if you don't have one, what is their appeal? Might as well get one of the older models.



  • jpr 11 Points
    It looks like Garmin and Tomtom are going in the same direction. The new Tomtom GO 620 coming out in North America in March (released in the fall 2016 in Europe), also has wifi for updates. It requires you to link with your smartphone to get live traffic.
  • mike41 5 Points
    I have a Garmin 60 drive smart and Nuvi 2699 with Live traffic through my smartphone. Traffic worked well. Since the recent updates, traffic is no longer a paid subscription. Traffic also no longer displays on either device. Any suggestions?
  • sussamb 634 Points
    Here's another way that Garmin seem to be following TomTom.

    In UK someone with a new Drive 51 reported that 3rd party speed camera files no longer work. The user that reported this issue copied a known working .gpi file from a nuvi and installed it in his Drive 51. No speed cam alerts. He's spoken to Garmin, who reportedly have told him that 3rd party speed cameras won't work on the latest Drive models. This is a route already started by TomTom a while back.

    If true those who want to use their GPS with speed camera files will need to buy one of the older models.
  • Boyd 1737 Points
    What's nex? Maps? ;)
  • Sull 0 Points
    Hi, i am looking to purchase the Garmin Drivesmart 61 lmts and was wondering when you connect the GPS to your smartphone via the garmin app can you still use your phone and other apps?

  • mike41 5 Points
    Yes, you can use the phone and apps while it is connected to the Garmin GPS. That is the reason I have the dedicated Garmin device. I do not have to constantly fumble with the phone. The Garmin connects with the phone even if the phone is in my pocket. I have the Garmin 61 limits. Nice screen size and resolution.
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