Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Product Review: Rand McNally Overdryve 7

This unit, Rand McNally's Overdryve OD7, is quite the setup. I will start my review with my opinion of pros for the device:The quick disconnect feature of it's mount get's an A+. It's has two rows of twelve contact points that make a connection while super strong magnets do all the holding. So when you take the GPS(Tablet) with you it's a breeze.  The persistent accuracy of this unit is incredible. They achieve this by having not only the GPS radio that is built into most tablets these days, but on the base of the mount there is a secondary GPS radio with it's own antenna. This means there is no waiting to acquire satellite signal as long as the (mount)base remains powered up. This unit not only has wifi, but it also has bluetooth with a tethering option. The speaker that is built in to the mount is very adequate and works well for both turn by turn directions and it works well as a speaker phone while connected to your cell phone. I was able to download waze, and use it as my navigation software.
This unit falls a little short in the following areas:
  • Voice recognition on the installed Rand Mcnally navigation software does not measure up to Google Maps, or Waze. I tried using it several times and resorted to typing my destination in, and to use voice recognition with the unit, it had to have an internet connection. 
  • This device does not have any Google Play Services and actually will not let you install them, which makes most of any googles apps not run. This is a major let down, as I wouldn't mind to view an occasional email on this (of course not while I'm driving), it would be awesome to be able to pull up all of my playlists within Google Play Music. There is a workaround, download chrome and use the browser to stream from your account. Here is how I use the Overdryve by Rand McNally. I downloaded the Waze app onto it, I tether my 4G internet from my phone to it over bluetooth, because bluetooth consumes less power on my phone. 
Overall this unit is a very powerfull GPS. It would be a must if you drive truck, or drive an RV. It pays attention to road weight limits and bridge height restrictions. When connected to the internet, having the real time traffic is just amazing.

This unit is a little pricey at $399.99, plus $29.99 for the bean bag dash pad. But if you fall into the category of a truck driver, or rv driver, it's probably worth it. If it had or offered Google Play Services and wasn't so expensive I would have giving it the fifth star.

You can Pre-order over at BestBuy for $399.99.

** I have a material connection regarding this piece of equipment or its manufacturer. **

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