December 4, 2007
It is quite common for a guy to fall in love with some closer-to-heart gadgets. So have I: it is Navigon. While going gaga over her features, it struck to me that GPS might not stand good chance to be a hit in India. Hence, let us compare Navigon (or any random GPS unit) to its competitor: AutoNav (the Hyderabadi Autowallah).
Feed this address as destination: House no. 233-211/34A/22C, Gandhi Marg, Behind Lokhandwala Hospital, Opposite to Saibaba temple, Hope-you-find-me-nagar Sector 22 Hyderabad.
Result: Navigon freezes and crashes, Autowallah smiles and says “options”.
Options? Yes, just like GPS units have ‘avoid tollways’ option, he presents the foll. options: Would you like to reach there the quickest, or would you prefer a scenic route, would you prefer some “checking out” by routing through a women’s college area or would you like to reach there by the cheapest means, in which case you would have to share this ride and it might take a while.
Baffled? thought so.. Not just that, the autowallah knows which roads to avoid, which roads to travel inspite of a STOP sign or one-way board, which area’s traffic constables is ‘negotiable’, etc etc. Beat that Navigon. Just like any GPS unit, the autowallah knows many POIs (points of interest): be it an electronics store or clothes place or a nice eatery (he even gives reviews).
Add to that Bose’s surround sound (you are literally surrounded by atleast 4 speakers shouting into your ears) blasting the latest Himesh Reshamiya songs. Video functionality has not been added yet, but there are enough posters (of Sonali Bendre, Kareena Kapoor and Priety Zinta) inside to help your imagination visualise the songs.
Language options: Navigon has British, Autralian and US English options, and so does AutoNav: he speaks Telangana dialect, Andhra dialect, Hindi, English and itsy-bitsy Tamil.
Inspite of these advantages, I might still go with Navigon (unless there is an auto-walee existing).
Footprints: IM status messages declaring warnings (DO NOT DISTURB), or saying “Busy@Work”. Why should I be the informed of that? If one is really *that* busy, then why grace their presence on IM at all? I do not shout “dont look at me” when running around naked, do I? If you are online, then you are open to “public” and ought to be prepared for any human correspondence, and if you are afraid of wasting time on worthless chit-chat, then your problem is your friend and beyond.