Garmin is excited to announce a new software update available to many multi-function displays (MFDs), chartplotters and combination chartplotters in its popular GPSMAP and echoMAP marine product lines. Among the new features included in this update are Auto Guidance 2.0, the import of waypoints, routes and tracks via GPX, advanced sailing features, enhanced safety operations, and more. This software update is available now at no charge.
“In an ongoing effort to improve our products and provide our customers with innovative features, we’re excited to offer this significant software update that adds a number of premium capabilities to some of our most popular marine product lines,” said David Dunn, senior manager of marine sales and marketing.
One of the features now available with this free software update is Auto Guidance 2.0. The original Auto Guidance was a breakthrough in simple, reliable marine auto-navigation. Now, this patented technology offers even more features and capabilities in Version 2.0. The user simply enters the desired destination and the technology instantly searches through relevant charts to create a path free of obstacles, shallow water, buoys and other obstructions.
The ability to import waypoints, routes and tracks from other manufacturer’s GPS products can now be done on all GPSMAP and echoMAP units via industry-standard GPX formatting. With this enhancement, users can retain and transfer their stored waypoints, ensuring critical data is maintained when trading up to a new Garmin product.
For sailing customers, many Garmin chartplotters now offer a compelling array of wind- maximizing features. A new pre-race guidance page displays a virtual starting line on the chart, along with data fields showing laylines, time to burn before the start, and a race countdown timer that can be synchronized across all networked Garmin GPS products. In addition, other supported sailing features include an enhanced wind rose, heading and course-over-ground lines, set and drift, true and apparent wind data, and more.
An exclusive SOS safety assist feature is now available on the higher-end GPSMAP 8000 and GPSMAP 7400/7600 series network chartplotters. This feature makes it easier for anyone – even those not familiar with marine electronics or radio protocols – to quickly call the Coast Guard for help in an emergency situation. By simply tapping the SOS button on the chartplotter’s touchscreen display, users are instantly presented with a list of possible situations (Fire, Man Overboard etc.). Once the applicable choice has been selected, the screen will provide a U.S. Coast Guard-approved VHF radio distress call script, along with the ship’s current GPS coordinates, that can be read off to responders – thus saving time, averting panic, and providing the essential information needed by rescuers to assure the best possible outcome.
In addition to the aforementioned features, many Garmin GPSMAP devices will now support several recently introduced Garmin products, including the GHP Reactor Autopilot series, GMR xHD2 open-array radars, and the GSD 25 black-box sounder.
This software update is free and available now for the following product lines: GPSMAP 8000, GPSMAP 7400/7600, GPSMAP 8x0/10x0, GPSMAP 5x7/7x1, as well as the full echoMAP series. Visit www8.garmin.com/support/software/marine.html for a full list of new features available by product, and to download the update today.