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I bought my 2011 Equinox LTZ about 2 months ago and I love everything about it EXCEPT THE NAV UNIT. I have owned portable GPS units for more than 7 years and have owned Garmin, Magellan and Lowrance units. Without any doubt the algorithms used by GM in their unit are the poorest I have ever seen.

If I choose the "shortest route" option the directions given are not for the shortest route by any means. The "fastest route" option takes me off the freeway into a bunch of side streets - definitely not faster. I have been directly comparing the routes selected by the on-board unit with my Garmin Nuvi 785T running alongside it - no comparison!

You would think that for $2,000+ GM could partner with a reputable GPS software vendor to provide a unit that compares with my obsolete little Nuvi! I've stopped using the on-board nav unit and have just ordered a Proclip mount for my little Nuvi.

I'm still glad I bought the nav unit for the other utilities built into the large screen, but it would be nice to have a nav unit that functioned halfway effectively.
 

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I agree that it's not that great. The routes are just..odd with no "optional" routes easily or at all available, and the screen response is slow.
I've tried playing with it and running at the same time as my basic Google Navigation on my phone. The phone wins every time for a lot of reasons. The car is just a backup in case of signal loss.....

I agree that the Nav screen has some other bonuses, but that's it. I miss the little storage area that disappears because of it..

I only got one with the Nav system because of the timing of buying the car. Had I ordered another color with the features I wanted, I would have had to pay interest that would have added up to, essentially, what I got at the no-interest buying time. I'm very pleased with my color. I try not to let myself dwell on it.
I was disapponted, however, that the 40GB hard drive that comes with it used 30GB just for the Nav system leaving only 10gb for music files you may copy. That's crazy! What's the point in advertising a 40gb hard drive. There is nowhere except manual fine print to know this limitation of storage by a user.... I call that part of selling scam...

Also, not being able to manipulate navigation while driving is a pain, but I also understand safety. Many don't know how to do that responsibly. Still, I don't want to have to pull the car over to input a destination. Phone voice control runs circles around that.....

Just my 2 cents (with inflation since the origin of that statement...that's probably a dollar now ;-)
 

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I really wanted to get the LCD screen and navigation with my new car, but after reading reviews I just couldn't find a reason to pony up the 2000-2500 for it. I decided I'd just get an Android tablet and put it in the upper storage area of the dash.

I already own an Android phone and Google's Navigation GPS software puts all others to shame, so I purchased a Samsung Galaxy Tab (7") for $400 and it fits perfectly in the upper storage area of the dash and the power cord runs down the channel on the side of the radio to the power port in the middle of the console. It's actually very clean looking. If I ever have the dash apart for whatever reason I'll be running a power cable through the dash, but it's not worth ripping it apart for now.

Best part is you can search for locations using voice, so navigation is almost hands free. Just tap Navigation and then Voice Search and you're on your way. It beats the heck out of typing in a location on a Nuvi, that's just painful...

Another plus is being able to use apps to keep track of gas mileage, search for stores, geocache and surf the web for information wherever I'm at.
 

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My Terrain's built-in nav is the only GPS guidance system I've ever owned... although I did travel from Ontario down through Ohio and over to northwestern Iowa using my old Blackberry Bold with BB maps.

I like the factory nav because...

- There isn't a separate unit that begs to be stolen unless it's stowed away every time (what a pain!)
- I can input destinations via voice (@ jecilop - you CAN do this with the nav system)
- Route guidance is piped through the vehicle's sound system so you don't risk missing guidance by having the radio on too loud
- I don't risk getting a 'distracted driver' citation by fiddling around with my mobile phone or other non-inbuilt device like a Galaxy Tab (our law is not phone-specific)
- It increases resale value - especially with most '12s being equipped with colour screens the blue or red monochrome display is going to look pretty chintzy

I've found the route guidance to be quite accurate, so I would throw out there that the quality of the routing is location-specific. The 40/10 GB thing doesn't bother me personally, a 4 GB USB stick has all the music I need on it.
 

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mIX said:
I decided I'd just get an Android tablet and put it in the upper storage area of the dash.
....
Another plus is being able to use apps to keep track of gas mileage, search for stores, geocache and surf the web for information wherever I'm at.
Ah, yes! Agreed... I commented somewhere before Zoom came out that I can't believe car companies haven't gotten together with tablet makers to just incorporate one into their vehicles!! They could make a wi-fi feed could run through XM or On-star (I forget which of those I heard you can hook an antennae through from the dealer), and it could appear built-in (for the sake of theft) or be removable! Of course, it would probably be better built-in only as the battery can really warm up depending on use...


@Terrain: I also do appreciate any resale value it may have although my hope it to hold onto it for 15 years like my other car :) By then the Nav will be out of date ;-) I will look into that Voice control again. I actually did read the manual info cover to cover and did not see anything on that. To be clear, I'm talking voice control WITHOUT XM or On-Star. For my purposes, I don't find them worth the money. The were just a bonus trial when I bought the car. If you have any direct instructions you could share, that is appreciated also... My trial is about to run out. I'm considering doing On-star for only another month in July as I'm about to take a 1300 mile road trip - that's a safety reason as well as phone signal reason :)
 

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^ Yes, if you keep your vehicles for a long time the system will be out of date... but for at least a few years you will be able to buy update DVDs.

Voice command is easy... just say "destination". I assume it works without XM or Onstar although those are both active (until next month when my Onstar year trial runs out). I do like XM, however, although I normally dislike the idea of subscription services.
 

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Terrain said:
^ Yes, if you keep your vehicles for a long time the system will be out of date... but for at least a few years you will be able to buy update DVDs.

Voice command is easy... just say "destination". I assume it works without XM or Onstar although those are both active (until next month when my Onstar year trial runs out). I do like XM, however, although I normally dislike the idea of subscription services.
make sure that you are reading the "NAV owners" manual, page 87 begins the voice commands, I need to bone up on some of them. I forgot you can enter addresses or POIs, thanks for that.
 

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Had the Nav unit included with the family 07 SRX and was NOT impressed by the performance or the price they wanted to charge me for a map update :angryfire: (absolutely crazy...I DEMANDED a free update disc and would not stop bothering them until they gave it to me). From what I could tell during my Equinox test drive, the system hasn't improved much in 4 years. I just can't see spending $1000-$2500 more for a system that is worse than my $60 NAVIGON app AND that is tied to the specific vehicle and gone when I trade it in.
 

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mIX said:
Best part is you can search for locations using voice, so navigation is almost hands free. Just tap Navigation and then Voice Search and you're on your way. It beats the heck out of typing in a location on a Nuvi, that's just painful...
Several of Garmin's units will also use voice. With my older 855 there is a button that attaches to the steering wheel that you push to enter voice mode. With the newer Garmins that have voice you use a key word of your choice that puts it in the voice mode. In my opinion the bad thing about factory units is the lack of portability, and what happens if something goes wrong with the unit? I doubt if a dealer would be able to repair it, I would think it would have to be taken out of the vehicle and sent somewhere. Also what does it cost to update the maps on a factory unit?
 

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I think that GM charges around on hundred bucks for a map update.
 

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Funny, I find my '10 Nav to be fantastic. Never ever had a problem with it and it updates on it's own. I've never paid for an update. How do I know? Because with all the construction changes in my area in the last two years and different routes I can see where it has changed from the last time I took those roads.
 
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