What is a POI? The system prescribed in the navigator will help you quickly find the nearest hospital, store, cinema, etc. in an unfamiliar city. But all this in theory - but how is it really?
For the first assessment, let's take a device with one of the most popular navigation shells iGo and maps of Russia and Europe from NAVTEQ. By the way, only this program allows you to use POI libraries from different manufacturers. Two files are devoted to the test device in our country - from the companies NAVTEQ and TeleAtlas. So the database will be more complete. However, this is only half the battle: it is equally important that the desired object is easy to find.
IGo has no problems with this: first of all, the user is prompted with requests typical for a traveler-motorist: gas stations, parking lots, restaurants and hotels. You can go into a deeper search - along the laid route, next to the current or final position, as well as in a specific city. Of course, the choice of objects of interest is not limited to vital ones. Nevertheless, some positions are puzzling.
Someone will not like that on the main screen of the map there are no shortcuts of interesting places
Someone will not like that on the main screen of the map there are no shortcuts of interesting places. Someone will not like that on the main screen of the map there are no shortcuts of interesting places.
A simple example: in the “Coast” category, it’s not hiding embankments and beaches, but marinas and yacht clubs. However, these are trifles. Moreover, it is not easy to confuse the program. Finding an airport, a circus, a museum and a hotel - iGo copes with such tasks perfectly. But if a tourist wants to leave the city, difficulties may begin. For example, want to find the famous Optina Desert Monastery? After several unsuccessful experiments, a solution was found: by searching by the name of the object near the current position.
Search in Russian
And what about the POI in purely Russian shells? Here is the device with the Navitel-Navigator program. Here are maps of Russia of our own design, a database of points - too. And this is noticeable: imported products try not to load the driver with an abundance of shortcuts on the screen, and Navitel literally dazzles them. It has everything: restaurants and car services, hospitals and cemeteries, religious organizations, shops, parking lots … Moreover, if foreign analogues know only Moscow and St. Petersburg well, here you can find points of interest even in remote towns.
But the search system, like the general menu structure in Navigator, is not an example. On the main screen, instead of the well-known abbreviation POI, we found only the mysterious “Nearest” item. Apparently, this word, according to developers, is a synonym for points of interest. A search near a given point also looks rather strange. First you need to select the item "next to the cursor", then poke into the inconspicuous triangle at the bottom of the screen. But there’s nothing more to complain about - the search structure allows you to find the desired object quickly and confidently.
Interest point categories are spelled out as needed. And their number both in the search and on the map deserves the highest rating
Interest point categories are spelled out as needed. And their number both in the search and on the map deserves the highest rating. Interest point categories are spelled out as needed. And their number both in the search and on the map deserves the highest rating.
One more minus: Navitel, like most other domestic navigation programs, is well-oriented at home, but it is pointless to go on a foreign tour with it. At best, you will find maps of the Baltic states and Finland.
Thinking of evaluating the capabilities of regular navigation systems, we took the editorial Kia Sportage as an example - the NAVTEQ program was loaded in the memory of its GPS navigator.
From the first minutes, the integrated “guide” captivates with ease of use. But there is a considerable minus, and it concerns Kia: unlike most other automakers offering built-in navigators, Koreans did not stint on a full set of maps of European countries, but they saved on Russification. The main problems associated with the search for points of interest are associated with this.
At first glance, everything is simple: a search by name, a choice of categories are provided. But the results of processing a “quick” request are arranged in a long list - while scrolling through it, it will take a lot of time. But the breakdown into groups is reasonable: priority is given precisely to the needs of the motorist (gas stations, parking lots, branded service stations). Other objects are also sorted logically. But the absence of the Cyrillic alphabet is extremely hindered. The desire to find a circus turned into an insoluble task. Enter in English: circus. Wrong. Trying other options. As a result, it turned out - never guess! - tsirk. The confusion of letters that emerged in the category “theaters” was completely baffled: what is it - tsdkzd? The answer is the Central Palace of Culture of Railway Workers. And there are many such examples.
When traveling abroad there are no problems either: the POI service is available in full
When traveling abroad there are no problems either: the POI service is available in full. When traveling abroad there are no problems either: the POI service is available in full.
But the content of the database itself is very good. And the navigator easily found almost all the test points. In what he was clearly stronger than the competition. For example, I didn’t just find all the Moscow airports, but even showed the arrival and departure zones. With such a "guide" you will not be lost either on vacation or on a business trip.
The classic navigation program is not the only help when navigating in an unfamiliar city. Owners of mobile devices in a difficult situation will be helped by electronic guides or “radar” programs.
As the first one, you can choose several programs at once (for example, GoTo for Android or mTrip for iPhone). In order not to download the POI base and the map on the spot for frantic roaming tariffs, it is better to download information about the desired city in advance. As a result, you will get not only a navigator with pedestrian mode, but also a detailed description of interesting places with photos (and sometimes with reviews from other users). Some companies also apply public transport schemes.
“Radars” work differently. By launching, for example, the Qype Radar application on an Android device in an unfamiliar place, just set the search category (restaurants, hotels, museums, etc.) and connect to the Internet. The program itself will find the nearest points and show the way to them. True, filling such databases sometimes leaves much to be desired. Yes, and connecting to a network abroad is unprofitable.
Imported navigators form the basis of the assortment of Russian stores. However, domestic products also appear. For example, GPS-devices Roda Gem produced by the St. Petersburg company "Roda". At the heart of the device is not quite the usual solution: the MTK ARM 11 processor with a clock frequency of 468 MHz, the MTK MT3328 chip is responsible for processing the satellite signal. The navigator is equipped with a removable battery with a capacity of 900 mAh, a SIM card slot and a 5-inch screen with a resolution of 800 × 480. In memory of 2 GB, the manufacturer installs the City-Guide program with maps of Russia and Ukraine.
Skeptics may say that for such a high screen resolution, processor performance is not enough. But a short acquaintance dispelled doubts: the device works quickly, the graphics do not slow down. Only the price was disappointing: so far less than 6500 rubles. You cannot buy this navigator.