Gear Reviews

Apisphere, Inc. Geomate.jr

This top-shelf GPS can pinch hit as a digital camera.

Brand: Apisphere, Inc.

Model: Geomate.jr





Make a better mousetrap. That’s what Garmin did when they combined their award-winning Oregon 400t (Editors’ Choice Award, April 2009) with a 3.2-megapixel camera, creating a top-shelf GPS that can pinch-hit as a point-and-shoot. As a result, our map contributors came back with more trail photos than usual, all geo-referenced to their exact location. And the whole thing is a cinch to use, thanks to a three-inch color touch screen and universal icons that even a non-GPS user can understand.

You can access preloaded terrain maps in 3D, save up to 200 tracks and 2,000 waypoints, and use the microSD slot to expand the unit’s 850MB memory. Camera caveat: The 4x digital zoom and autofocus lens are best suited to landscape (not action) photos, and the image quality is best for blogs (not wall art). Bonus: The price includes a battery charger and two rechargeable AAs (expect 10-12 hours of runtime). $600; 5.3 oz.;

The Geomate.jr is an amazingly easy to use, affordable geocaching GPS designed to get kids and families outside and enjoying geocaching together. Unlike any other GPS, the Geomate.jr comes preloaded with about 250,000 geocache locations that cover all 50 U.S. states. By simply turning it on, it will navigate you to your closest geocache anywhere in the U.S.; by pressing the “next” button, you’ll go to the next closest geocache. You also get information like size, terrain, difficulty rating and ID code for each cache. With an Update Kit, you can load all the latest caches with a simple click of a button, or load complete cache lists for Europe, Canada, or Australasia (Australia, New Zealand, and surrounding area).