I bought my Nuvi for vacation over the summer, used it constantly, loved it, told everyone about it, and made a lot of money (for me) on GRMN stock.
Now I am back to my daily drudgery of work and soccer practice and grocery shopping every week, and I haven't got it out of the case for two months. My job is pretty much the same route every day, and my daily trips do not require navigation help. While this may be heresy on this board, I am wondering if others are experiencing the same thing? I have talked to others who have purchased new vehicles and haven't felt the need to use the in-dash GPS system. It has certainly tempered my enthusiasm for GRMN stock. Does everyone still think a Nuvi is for everyone? Does it have the same mass appeal as an Ipod?
I don't use my Nuvi 350 too often. But it sure was nice trying to find my turn to a new golf course last Saturday as we drove into the rising sun. Could hardly see and we would not have spotted the sign until too late.
Also used it this summer while I was in California. Nice to be able to pack it in my carry-on and have it ready to go when I got in the rental car.
Next week when I drive from Michigan to North Carolina it will help me find my hotel and then the small airport I need to be at early the next morning. All I know now is the airport is 25 miles from the town I'm staying in.
That said I think a lot of people can use a portable. Don't need it around town but if you like to head out anywhere new it sure is handy. I think a lot will be given as gifts by people like me who have found them real handy.
I would agree that for most, a GPS/nav unit is not something you would use every day. But it is far from what I would call a "novelty" item.
If you've ever used one on a trip to a place you're not familar with, you would immediately believe it is an invaluable tool for future trips. Not just for directions, but POIs are also very helpful. What I like best is there is little time wasted on finding your way, which means more time to spend on activities. I'm the type that likes to fit in as much as possible.
I live in the northeast. In my area, we can have anywhere from 1 to 7 heavy snow storms a year. But more and more people are buying snow blowers. Why? They've gone down in price signficantly over the past 15 years and it's an invaluable tool when you have 1-2+' of snow in a 2 to 4+ car driveway.
Mass adoption doesn't require it to be an everyday item, although no question something like a cell phone has a larger market.
I don't know what the traffic is like in your town but if GRMN had traffic displayed then you might want to see it every day. If there was a chance that I might get caught in traffic to or from work then I would want to always have access. The biggest problem of course is that traffic is not available everywhere, usually only in the largest metro's. However, there is a new technology that's coming along using cell phones that GRMN should buy and push. That's the biggest idea I've had since investing here and eventually I'll be right. When? I'm not sure but it is being tested right now and I know it can work.
The point to point navigation is only the tip of the iceberg. Location based information will be added over time, such as being able to see not only upcoming gas stations but recent prices as well. Because of features like this, PNDs will begin to factor into our daily decision making processes from where to stop for gas, to finding a place to eat with the best lunch special each day. Not to mention that as traffic information gets better, you will have your PND on at all times because it's never really worth it to get caught in traffic. This is a rosey view of the future, but it's also very possible.
I haven't turned on my nuvi since the trip last August until just today to go a new local restaurant.
So that is about a month and a half.
Truth is, if you just in town go to work, shopping, you don't need GPS because you have used the route 1000 times.
But if you ever travel, then a nuvi is a must. I really can say i would be very happy to buy the nuvi for $600 a year ago instead of buying it at $370 recently if I had known how useful it could be. It could save me a lot of wasted time. And I am sure that is the highest comment any one can say for a consumer product (the best thing since slice bread). You can't say that about the iPod or iPhone.
So that is why Q1 and Q3 are slow seasons and Q2 and Q4 are exploding because that is when people travel most.
I have absolutely no worry about GRMN stock and plan to add more near 100 because the market is still far from saturated.