Magellan Rolls out Rich GPS Maps

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Magellan is outfitting some of its GPS (Global Positioning System) devices with more advanced topographic maps that it hopes will attract off-road and outdoor enthusiasts, it said on Monday.

The AccuTerra maps and come from digital mapping company Intermap Technologies, with which Magellan announced a deal in February.

AccuTerra maps include elevation information, classified trails, paths and roads, specific points of interest (more than a million, according to Intermap) such as campgrounds, service facilities, and landmarks, all with the outdoor fan in mind. They also feature a land-use display that depicts the location of public land -- including national forests, wilderness areas and state parks -- and private property, separated using different colors.

Magellan devices supporting the AccuTerra maps are the Triton 400, 500, 1500, and 2000 units, and the eXplorist 400, 500, 600, and XL units. Customers who already have one of these devices can now download maps for the lower 48 states plus Hawaii from the Magellan Web site, according to a statement.

The deal with Magellan isn't exclusive; Intermap plans to work with other vendors as well, according to its Web site.

The navigation market has become increasingly competitive in the last couple of years, as GPS has become available on an increasing number of mobile phones, including Apple's new iPhone 3G on Friday.

This has forced specialized companies to step up, more advanced maps for Magellan devices is one just example. Recently Garmin signed a deal with GyPSii, which runs a mobile social network that it plans to use in some of its products.

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