I have a place in my heart for personal navigation devices (PNDs). In years past, they got me where I was going, even if they sometimes steered me onto a circuitous path. And weirdly, I miss having a Garmin tell me it’s “recalculating” when I take a wrong turn.
But in the age of Waze, does anyone still need a PND? My conclusion: In most cases, probably not. Unless you’re into dash cams.
Consider Garmin’s DriveAssist 51 ($300), introduced at CES 2017. It’s as good an example as any of what PND makers are up to these days, in hopes of remaining relevant. I’ve tested a DriveAssist 51 on and off for the past month. And while it did a reasonably good job of getting me from points A to B, there’s primarily one killer feature that elevates it above smartphone navigation apps: A built-in dash cam.