Another review I found for the roadpilot-
These days it seems GPS camera warning systems are all the rage, you can’t open an automotive related journal without falling over adverts for them. I remember buying my first Morpheous Geodesy about a year ago, and that was state of the art then! But time, as they say, waits for no man and especially no company. It should come as no surprise, then, to learn that the company that really started it all, Morpheous, should be consistently updating their product range to keep themselves ahead of the competition.
The new Morpheous RoadPilot is the latest incarnation of GPS technology, and it certainly looks an impressive package, latest generation GPS receiver and a nice, clear LCD screen. Its not cheap, retailing at around Ł500, but it does come in a rather impressive metal box. On opening this, you are greeted by the sight of all this modern technology in something not much bigger than a calculator, a mounting and power bracket along with an external GPS aerial. My main gripe with the original Geodesy was the lack of external aerial as standard – it being a pain to site the device on some dashboards. Its good to see that Morpheous have addressed this, it makes living with the RoadPilot that much easier.
Fitting is as easy as the proverbial, the suction cup provided with the unit is very strong, though you’ll probably need to clean the inside of your windscreen before fitting it. The screen is large and clear enough that you don’t necessarily have to have it pointing at you to be read, this also means your passengers have the opportunity to see whats going on! The best way to do this is to fit the RoadPilot where you want then fit the aerial afterwards. The unit has a setting where it will show you all the satellites overhead and their relative signal strengths. This means that you can move the aerial around the car until you find the ideal place for the best reception. Once found, some double-sided sticky tape will usually be adequate to secure it in position. The aerial can also be mounted outside the car (its magnetic), if you find your cars metal body work obscures the signal too much. For most people though, I imagine a fitting in the front windscreen somewhere would be more than sufficient.
The unit comes with a cigarette lighter power connector, which can be cut and hard-wired to your vehicle, should you desire.
Essentially, that’s the fitting all taken care of, it didn’t take me more than 15 minutes, and most of that was spent making a cup of tea!
So, down to business. The original Geodesy was simple creature, which was undoubtedly part of its appeal. It sat on your dashboard emitting a rather cool blue light until it came within a pre-determined range of a speed camera, at which point it would start beeping and flashing like R2-D2 on acid. This was all very well, but it couldn’t tell you if the camera was facing at you, or away from you, or if was on a side road and you wouldn’t pass it at all. The RoadPilot’s screen gives you the opportunity to see all this information, and more. In general use, once online, the RoadPilot gives you your speed (in digital or analogue form), and also the direction of your nearest speed camera installation. Oh, and a compass. On other screens you can also access your height above sea level and your location on the planet by GPS co-ordinates. I suppose I’d better mention that for safety’s sake you can’t use the RoadPilots impressive menu system whilst on the move, only while stationary. While driving you can use it to record new camera locations and store journey ‘waypoints’ – more of that later.
Once you near a camera site, however, things change. The unit gives you an audible warning (either verbal or a ‘beep’, depending on what you’ve selected) and the screen changes to show an ‘overhead’ presentation. In this, your car is depicted as a square at the bottom of the screen and the camera is shown on its position relative to your heading. There is a range display at the top of the screen which counts down your proximity to the camera at a range pre-selected by you. As you near the site, the Roadpilot will inform you of the speed limit for that road and also notify you if it thinks you are exceeding it. If you’ve set the ‘voice’ option, this consists of the disembodied female voice telling you to ‘Slow Down!’ – as if my girlfriend doesn’t do enough of that anyway….
Once you have passed the camera the unit reverts back to the ‘normal’ screen and the direction arrow counts your distance away from the camera you have just passed.
This is essentially the main use for the RoadPilot, but in the interests of technology, Morpheous have included a few more GPS goodies. There is a ‘tracking’ page, where you can see an overhead view of everywhere you’ve travelled since last resetting it. This can be useful if you’re lost somewhere, like a housing estate, for example, and there is a ‘waypoint’ setting where you can ‘pinpoint’ a certain spot that is important to you, and whenever you pass or come near this point the unit will tell you.
The RoadPilot comes with the standard years subscription to the Morpheous database, after this to be eligible for updates you must purchase a subscription. The unit also comes with Morpheous’s guarantee that, should you be the first person to report a new camera site that their database doesn’t currently recognise, they’ll give you a cheque for Ł50!
Therein lies my only bugbear with the RoadPilot, it comes with some handy PC software for updating and downloading the database, and even mapping your waypoints and distances travelled and whatnot. Unfortunately, this means that you have to attach your RoadPilot to your PC, should you want to update it. No problem, you might think, but the original Geodesy was a simple ‘plug and play’ affair, with its own modem link. This IS available as an option for the RoadPilot, but I believe it should be a no-cost purchase option. I presume Morpheous have done their market research on this, but I for one have a few PC-less friends (hard to believe these days, I know!) and I think this small fact would put them off purchasing a RoadPilot.
So, in summary, Morpheous have come up with the goods yet again. The RoadPilot is a small, clever package with a lot of good features – and works extremely well on the road. As an improvement to the original Geodesy, it fulfils its role brilliantly, and at a competitive price. The use of GPS products in motor cars is really only just beginning and I, for one, am already looking forward to the next angle Morpheous take on this exciting technology.