Xgody 886 GPS Review – Navigation System with 8GB SD Card
The Xgody 886 is a GPS receiver with a 5-inch screen and voice navigation. It’s the first GPS receiver to offer free US road maps and provides a very large window for its price at $149.99 or $139.99 after rebate (valid through 7/31/07). The Xgody 886 got full points in the major categories.
Solar-powered with lifetime map updates
The Xgody 886 is solar-powered, which means that it never needs to be plugged into a power outlet to keep charging its battery. This is an advantage over the TomTom One, for example, which needs to be recharged every few days with a USB cable. The Xgody 886 never needs to be plugged in, and will always work.
The downside of this is that you need sunlight to charge the unit’s battery. The lifetime map updates do not seem like a big deal at first, since you can use any USB-enabled computer to update the maps. But when you realize the fact that there are lifetime map updates, you realize that this is a very big deal. I can’t imagine why anyone would want to buy a GPS with one year of free map updates and then be forced to pay for more.
The Xgody 886 comes preloaded with maps of all 50 states, as well as the national highway database, so it will show every road in the US. The overall map detail is not as good as Garmin’s, but I can’t complain about something that’s free.
Voice navigation with street names
The Xgody 886 includes voice navigation, which means that it will speak your destination name when you are close to an intersection or off-exit. This is a big deal because the competitor products that lack voice navigation are very frustrating to use.
Some people have had problems getting the Xgody 886 to read street names correctly, but I did not experience this problem during my tests. The sound of the Xgody 886’s speaker is loud and clear.
Screen size and quality
The Xgody 886 has a 5-inch screen compared to the 4.3-inch screen on the TomTom One and Garmin’s 5-inch screen. The screen is bright and easy to read, even in direct sunlight.
The Xgody 886 comes with many other features that you would expect from a GPS receiver: text-to-speech, points of interest, route calculation/avoidance, and overview maps. It also has some unadvertised features.
The Xgody 886 comes with a cigarette lighter power adapter that is compatible with both cars and boats (most GPS receivers will not work while charging in a boat), an AC adapter for your home outlet, and a USB cable for updating the maps and uploading custom POIs.
The Xgody 886 is an excellent GPS receiver for its price and provides some unique features such as free lifetime map updates and voice navigation, which you would expect only from high-end receivers costing $300 or more. It also provides many other useful features that you would expect from high-end units. I recommend the Xgody 886 to all GPS enthusiasts, especially those who are looking for their first unit.
The Xgody 886 is available via Amazon.com at a discounted price, because it’s not sold directly by Amazon here.