Home Gadgets That Can Save You Energy
March 9, 2011

An ever-increasing array of modern gadgets may be making our lives easier, but all these gizmos are also taking a toll on monthly utility bills. While most gadgets are energy hogs, an increasing number of products can actually help you slash your home energy costs. Electricity Monitors First and foremost, it’s difficult to cut your energy use if you’re not clear about which devices waste the most energy. Plug an appliance or electronic device into the P3 Kill A Watt electricity monitor ($26), and you’ll get realtime feedback about how much juice you’re using. Armed with this information and

The Future of the Connected Car
February 26, 2011

Most of us who watched Knight Rider as a kid expected that by 2011 we would be driving sleek, self-aware cars like KITT — cars that would take us seamlessly from A to B while cracking witty one-liners. Though that future has not yet come to pass, things are starting to get exciting in the in-car technology space. Connected cars are hitting the consumer market in a price bracket that makes them a realistic option for many. One prediction sees “near saturation” in the U.S. market in as little as four years’ time. “In terms of connected

4G LTE Won't Destroy GPS; Will LightSquared?
February 24, 2011

Calm down. Contrary to some hyperbolic headlines, the 4G networks run by Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, MetroPCS and T-Mobile won't have any effect on GPS signals. And brand-new 4G provider LightSquared, who GPS manufacturer Garmin complains may indeed interfere with location-based services, doesn't want to. "We not only have to have a robust wireless broadband network, we have to have a robust GPS network. They both have to work," LightSquared executive vice president Jeff Carlisle said. LightSquared owns a satellite communications network but wants to get into the more popular and profitable land-based cellular business.

Garmin 4Q Earnings Fall 52 Pct as Sales Tumble
February 23, 2011

Garmin Ltd., best known for its global positioning systems, said Wednesday that its fourth-quarter earnings fell 52 percent as smart phones continued to eat into the market for personal navigators. The company also issued a weaker-than-expected forecast, as it predicted that sales of global positioning system devices will continue to tumble. Garmin has struggled to adapt to changing consumer behavior. As smartphones with built-in maps and GPS radios become the norm, sales of navigators, which typically sit on car dashboards, have dropped off. Revenue from these products fell 31 percent during the

Our Twisted Relationship with the GPS
February 9, 2011

Having an appliance that talks - but doesn't listen - drives some people around the bend. Others enjoy having someone in the car to argue with. It's all about the voice, an expert says. Irvin Gordon has put 2.9 million miles on his 1966 red Volvo, earning himself a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. He has crossed the country at least 45 times and rarely gets lost. Still, six years ago, he went out and bought himself a TomTom, not so much because he required navigational assistance but because he missed having someone to argue with.

Garmin Guides You to Giant Coffee Pots and Tiny Churches
February 1, 2011

Sure, your GPS guides you to gas stations, hotels, and restaurants, but how about the world's largest light bulb? Or a drive-through tree? Or the famous Cadillac Ranch in Texas? is now selling a $20 guide to these types of sights that integrates with . The is a set of over 5,000 add-on points of interest that can be downloaded directly to a Garmin navigation device. The guide points out roadside attractions in all 50 states, complete with photos and categories. has been cataloging strange sites around the country for years, and gets many comments and updates

Your Smart Phone is a Car Navigation System
January 31, 2011

The newest GPS apps work just as well as stand-alone dashboard units

Several years ago when I was in Los Angeles for a trade show, I got lost at 11 p.m. driving from downtown to my hotel near the airport. The area near the airport is not a place where a woman feels comfortable stopping to ask for directions, so I kept driving. Eventually I found my hotel, but I vowed never to rent a car again without a navigation system

For Cyber Shoppers, Gadgets Look Hot
November 28, 2010

The holiday shopping season, which starts online Cyber Monday, promises to be very good for Apple Inc.

The Cupertino, Calif.-based consumer electronics giant will likely take advantage of the gift-giving season to flex its muscles, grabbing market share for its popular iPod, iPhone and iPad products.

In particular, analysts say Apple will lock down its dominance of the touchscreen computer market, moving more of its iPad tablet devices through retail partners