Uniden Cuts Fresh Trax In Car-Nav

Uniden TRAX 5000Car-nav devices are damn useful things. That's a given. Apart from the times they conspire to dump you in the middle of nowhere, that is. But we accept those instances as a failure of logic.

What most drivers need more than a sexier voice is a larger screen with which to track their target. It's a simple concept. Larger screen = less time spent with eyes not on the road. A good thing.

Uniden's TRAX GPS car navigation systems feature a 5in (13cm) non-reflective LCD screen—among the largest available—paired with "next generation" 3D mapping technology to provide drivers with the most realistic navigation experience currently on the market. Or so the blurb goes.

Wait, there's more: "With 360 Degree 3D Landmark technology enabling locations such as the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Queen Victoria Building and Sky Tower to be viewed in 3D from any angle, the TRAX 5000 takes car-nav a step further incorporating new 360 degree 3D City Maps technology which makes it possible to view entire city blocks and identify key areas of interest. New 3D Terrain Software, which shows road elevations and land contours including overpasses and bridges, is another key feature."

We're a little worried about feature-bloat, to be honest. If you're stuck in Sydney's George Street or can't figure your way out of the one-way madness of Brisbane's CBD and just want to know when the hell to turn right, a 3D top-down view sounds kind of useless. Fun for tourists, perhaps. And a great way to get fresh planning ideas for SimCity.

Other key features of Uniden's TRAX 5000 and TRAX 4300 include spoken street names; latest "Where-is" Australian and New Zealand mapping; POI route planning with up to 750,000 pre-programmed Points of Interest, including restaurants and accommodation "Where Am I" route planning; fixed speed and red light camera warnings; over speed alert; day and night mode that switches automatically; and predictive keyboard text to reduce destination search time.

Pricing? TRAX 5000 with 5in LCD, $349.95. TRAX 4300 with 4.3in LCD, $249.95. More info over at Uniden.

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