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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I did realize that the GPS in the car is already installed; and you need a SD card with maps on it to enable it. This remind me of games with DLC on the disk already, but locked until you buy it :)

IF you ask me, I would say that it is BS, especially if you get a top of the line Lusso or the Abarth; but I did hear that the price is about 300-500 USD.

At this point, is it worth it? The problem is that the car does not use the phone to put the phone map on screen, so you are stuck using your phone GPS, which is not really amazing; considering how small the cockpit of the car is, and with virtually no space for any sort of place for a phone holder in a safe and visible area.

I did see also people selling SD cards on amazon and Ebay; so I assume that the card is a simple SD card, and you put the software on it (kinda like you would do with a raspberry pi for example); which is even more infuriating, considering that the dealer asked for 800-1200 for the GPS extra! I can't see where the SD card goes, but can't really justify a jump in price from 200 to 1200, to put a SD card in.

Would love to hear your take on the GPS; this weekend I am going to grab the 124, and would like to have some good arguments for the guy, when he will ask for 1200 bucks :)
 

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I think Fiat price on the card is more like 400. There are people here who have gotten the card on e-bay for less than half of that if I remember correct. The card goes into an SD slot just to the left of the USB ports. There's a little plastic cover over the slot. If your dealer's trying to charge you $1200 for it I'd find a new dealer.
 

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I turned down the dealer $400 or so option for GPS. The SD cards are on eBay for about $150. They work well and having a centralized GPS in the car does make it a little easier. The spec sheet says all the abarths are gps "enabled", but I recall hearing that's true of all the models. Whoever originally posted here about getting the cards off eBay helped out a lot.
 

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Are you sure the dealer wasn't quoting an option package which includes navigation? I'm not sure which options include navigation, as I've got the whole hog. Since many people have had success with the eBay sellers, that's probably a better option.

Remember the old trope; dealers make their money off options and packages. Also, is the navigation really necessary? Depends on how much you use it - $150 for intermittent use might be acceptable, but $400 for a lot of use on a daily basis might also be acceptable.

(Also, as far as mounting a phone, some have had good success with the vent mounts; but you could get creative).
 

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I did realize that the GPS in the car is already installed; and you need a SD card with maps on it to enable it. This remind me of games with DLC on the disk already, but locked until you buy it :)

IF you ask me, I would say that it is BS, especially if you get a top of the line Lusso or the Abarth; but I did hear that the price is about 300-500 USD.

At this point, is it worth it? The problem is that the car does not use the phone to put the phone map on screen, so you are stuck using your phone GPS, which is not really amazing; considering how small the cockpit of the car is, and with virtually no space for any sort of place for a phone holder in a safe and visible area.

I did see also people selling SD cards on amazon and Ebay; so I assume that the card is a simple SD card, and you put the software on it (kinda like you would do with a raspberry pi for example); which is even more infuriating, considering that the dealer asked for 800-1200 for the GPS extra! I can't see where the SD card goes, but can't really justify a jump in price from 200 to 1200, to put a SD card in.

Would love to hear your take on the GPS; this weekend I am going to grab the 124, and would like to have some good arguments for the guy, when he will ask for 1200 bucks :)
Personally, I use the GPS in the car almost daily. Works great and no worries about where to stick my phone. The card slot is next to the aux in jacks on the console behind the shifter. The card goes into the slot behind the rubber plug, which pries off. Probably has a small piece of paper in there to help you remove it the first time. The card is $350-$400 depending on the dealer, unless one is hiding in your glove box at the bottom - which happened to one lucky owner who wasn't supposed to get nav. The dealer here I know has thrown it in to secure the deal. On the other hand, the Ebay sellers are offering a good deal at $125-$150 and even through they are copied software, as long as they haven't been installed they shouldn't be locked to any particular VIN. After installing, they will lock to a VIN. (After 62 miles I think). The car has to have the 7 inch screen, by the way, not the 3.
 
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Soon enough phones will get better for things like GPS, projectors being one of them and MAYBE just maybe we can have it setup like an HUD system. Can't be that hard for a brand to make that an option.
 

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I use my phone for GPS. In my opinion, phones surpassed on board GPS several years ago.
 

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I use my phone for GPS. In my opinion, phones surpassed on board GPS several years ago.
In my opinion, there are three issues with using a phone for GPS in the 124 Spider.

1. You rely heavily on wireless signal strength. They've done a better job of caching maps in recent years but it can still be an issue. A built-in nav system functions independently of any cellular network.

2. There's nowhere to put the phone without a windshield mount, and the windshield is small enough as it is. Built-in nav offers a heads-up navigation view that is easy to view without relying on a mobile device.

3. Battery life. Your phone's GPS only works if you have enough battery to use it, and battery is depleted much more quickly when using GPS. The built-in nav doesn't use up any battery so it frees up your device.

I'd say the $100 I spent on ebay for the NAV card for this car was well worth it.
 

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In my opinion, there are three issues with using a phone for GPS in the 124 Spider.

1. You rely heavily on wireless signal strength. They've done a better job of caching maps in recent years but it can still be an issue. A built-in nav system functions independently of any cellular network.

2. There's nowhere to put the phone without a windshield mount, and the windshield is small enough as it is. Built-in nav offers a heads-up navigation view that is easy to view without relying on a mobile device.

3. Battery life. Your phone's GPS only works if you have enough battery to use it, and battery is depleted much more quickly when using GPS. The built-in nav doesn't use up any battery so it frees up your device.

I'd say the $100 I spent on ebay for the NAV card for this car was well worth it.
1. Certainly an issue in areas where signal coverage is an issue. Not an issue in urban environments on major carriers. I can see how this can be location dependent. I wasn't thinking outside of my own experience and geography. Although, even on road trips off the beaten path over the last few years, this hasn't been a huge issue for me.

2. I've got a vent mount, works great.

3. Plugged into power in the car. Not sure why this is an issue.
 

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i bought the ebay version. it works well, but i find myself going to my phone maps a lot, mostly because the car nav doesn't update and show traffic congestion or accidents. Since i drive an hour each way to work, that's kind of important. knowing which routes are 10 minutes worse is a daily advantage i want to know about... unless i just haven't figured out how to do it, the car nav through sd slot doesn't give you that.
 
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i bought the ebay version. it works well, but i find myself going to my phone maps a lot, mostly because the car nav doesn't update and show traffic congestion or accidents. Since i drive an hour each way to work, that's kind of important. knowing which routes are 10 minutes worse is a daily advantage i want to know about... unless i just haven't figured out how to do it, the car nav through sd slot doesn't give you that.
I never really searched for details about the traffic update, although I have the historical info field checked. i know I get alerts about speed/red light cameras and such and sometimes I get alternate routes on nav from time to time. Updating the database is easy enough through the web interface, and updates are free. Not sure how often they come up - I guess I look every three months or so and found an update each time.
 

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I never really searched for details about the traffic update, although I have the historical info field checked. i know I get alerts about speed/red light cameras and such and sometimes I get alternate routes on nav from time to time. Updating the database is easy enough through the web interface, and updates are free. Not sure how often they come up - I guess I look every three months or so and found an update each time.
tell me more about historical info field, and also how you do the database update through the web interface! thank ya in advance
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Are you sure the dealer wasn't quoting an option package which includes navigation? I'm not sure which options include navigation, as I've got the whole hog. Since many people have had success with the eBay sellers, that's probably a better option.

Remember the old trope; dealers make their money off options and packages. Also, is the navigation really necessary? Depends on how much you use it - $150 for intermittent use might be acceptable, but $400 for a lot of use on a daily basis might also be acceptable.

(Also, as far as mounting a phone, some have had good success with the vent mounts; but you could get creative).
I would say that I am sure that it was not an extra package, since the Abarth has fundamentally everything but the luxury packages (3900 I believe) or the preferred comfort package (1499 or something like that), Unless he was giving a huge discount, neither cost the price he did quote.

The car that I have my eyes upon, is an Abarth with the preferred package; so from what I understand, the GPS is already on it, but not enabled.

I do not use it that often, but there are times when I need the GPS, and the hassle to use my phone (which may have a dead battery, because luck!), make me happier to spend some money for an integrated system. Although for that amount, it cost less to get a dashboard GPS unit, including professional installation :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
In my opinion, there are three issues with using a phone for GPS in the 124 Spider.

1. You rely heavily on wireless signal strength. They've done a better job of caching maps in recent years but it can still be an issue. A built-in nav system functions independently of any cellular network.

2. There's nowhere to put the phone without a windshield mount, and the windshield is small enough as it is. Built-in nav offers a heads-up navigation view that is easy to view without relying on a mobile device.

3. Battery life. Your phone's GPS only works if you have enough battery to use it, and battery is depleted much more quickly when using GPS. The built-in nav doesn't use up any battery so it frees up your device.

I'd say the $100 I spent on ebay for the NAV card for this car was well worth it.
Indeed, the phone works with GPS signal from satellite, but for some reason, if you have bad signal you get no tracking; so it is useless if you have no signal or bad signal.

Combine that, with the lack of space to put the phone (in a spot that can't be snatched by anyone just grabbing it on the fly, while you are at a street light), makes the investment in the onboard system, a considerate choice.
 

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I disagree re the phone as your GPS, although I do have the nav card in the Spider. As a matter of principle I find it a bit stupid to have a 7" screen and no map. It's helpful to look at the map at times to see where an unfamiliar street goes, etc.

Re the phone...1. Always have a dedicated phone charging cord in your car. You never know when you'll have an emergency. In fact, you can easily charge your phone while driving if you forget to charge it at home. 2. Anyone who has used Waze will not go back to their car's GPS, Yahoo, or Google Maps for real time traffic updates. It's faster (it's owned by Google as well now...they simply outspend everyone for the best tech). 3. A Kenu or other similar vent holder for your phone will keep your phone at eye level and it is legal. It's easy and cheap as well.

I have Nav and traffic updates in another car, and have run tests against it, Waze, Yahoo maps etc. Waze kicks their butts every time. Now that most every carrier offers unlimited data, there's no reason not to run Waze. If you don't have unlimited data, then stick to the car's nav as a mapping app will chew up your data pretty quickly.
 

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Prosecco is totally on point. My phone stays charged in my car, I never have signal problems in LA, anything less than Waze is no longer good enough, and it sucks having a big screen with no map on it. I might buy the SD card for the same reason Prosecco says, because it is stupid to have a big screen with no map. But what I really want is Waze on that screen. Waze is in beta for Android Auto now. I can get that. I just need Mazda to support Android Auto soon or I will have to go the hack my interface route to introduce it myself. For now, I do find I can just close my phone and let it provide voice audio navigation.
 

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tell me more about historical info field, and also how you do the database update through the web interface! thank ya in advance
For the map updates, use this webportal: http://www.124spiderinfotainment.com/vehicle_select?return_to=%2Fnavigation-updatemymaps

Download the application to your desktop and once installed start it. Follow the instructions. You'll need to insert your SD card to validate it and for the app to determine if there is a pending update. Works easily - I keep the update app pinned to my taskbar.

Also, you can back up your SD card by copying its contents to a folder on your computer. (You don't need the app for that.)

For historical traffic data, in the settings of the nav system there is a check box for it.
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Regarding backup of the card; a guy at the dealer told me that the card has no protections or anything; if you know someone that can "lend' the SD card, which hasn't been activated yet (it happen when you keep the card in the car slot for 60 days, if I recall correctly), you can make a 1:1 copy and it will just work.

Not sure about the legal implications of doing a copy of a SD card, but he said that this is what they sell on Ebay: a copy of an original card. The question is that if you try the same ID on the card on multiple cars, that ID should be voided, instead it seems that Ebay people sell cards like crazy and nobody report issues so far.

I am more inclined to use the onboard GPS to be honest; or if anyone knows a hack that is reversible, to use the center console and voice controls with the BT connected phone (iOS or Android), I am good with that too :)
 

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for those who use the WAZE app. does anyone know, how do you change the language? i learned about the app while i was in Cost Rica and used it there but it is in spanish and i can't figure out how to change it to english. i should just delete it and reinstall it here stateside and it will probably automatically be in english.
 
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