Dual Electronics has updated their site promising that the XGPS300 Navigation Cradle for the iPod Touch, originally expected in November '09, will be shipping later this February. The cradle offers GPS support for all models of the iPod Touch and comes bundled with a Windshield Mount kit and the NavAtlas App all for the price of $179.99. While some critics have taken aim at the price point claiming it to be too steep for a consumer who might as well buy a dedicated standalone GPS unit, there are some features of this that might make the expense a little easier to swallow.
Adding significant value to the deal is the battery pack portion of the cradle which can be switched on and off as necessary. Whether it be to keep the GPS from draining all of the touch's power or simply as a power boost to keep the it kicking, the XGPS300 is capable of doubling its battery life. Battery pack cases alone usually cost between $60-$100, not to mention that this also means you're not tethered to your car. Unlike many other standalone GPS units, which get all of their power from the cigarette lighter, this one can be taken hiking, biking, swimming...well maybe not swimming, but you get the idea.
Having not used the NavAtlas app yet I can't vouch for its quality but since navigation apps like TomTom can cost upwards of $60, the possible value should not be overlooked. Plus the GPS support does not stop at NavAtlas or even navigation apps in general. The XGPS300 brings full location support to an iPod Touch and adds a built in microphone as well, bringing iPods just one step closer to being an iPhone and giving full functionality back to all of the amazing apps which require them.
Granted, $179.99 is a tough sell at first glance, but if GPS/location services is something you've been craving on your iPod Touch then the XGPS300 has more than enough to make it a worthy purchase. I've listed a couple of other features below along with the current ad Dual Electronics is running.
-Amplified Speaker for Navigation Voice Prompts
-WIndshield Mount is adjustable to any position
-Included 12v Charger for in car power
-LED Battery Life indicator