GPS Response from Magellan

Submitted: Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 11:28
ThreadID: 3953 Views:2593 Replies:6 FollowUps:9
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Hi all,

As promised I am publishing all information obtained from Magallen in relation to the import of units and software licensing rules.

Policy Document received this morning:

Magellan GPS Systems
Purchase of non compliant and illegal Magellan GPS hardware and mapping software
Magellan GPS Receivers are imported into Australia by the exclusive Australian distributor , Magellan GPS Systems . These receivers are put through a series of checks in Australia which make them comply with the Australian Government standards that relate to the manufacture and sale of GPS receivers. The receiver is then certified as compliant . Any GPS receiver sold into Australia without this compliance identification is breaking the law and is
liable for prosecution by the regulatory authority.
All Australian mapping data is supplied to Magellan GPS Systems under licence from the mapping authority representing the Commonwealth Government , The State Government of Victoria , The State Government of New South Wales , The State Government of Tasmania , The State Government of Queensland, The State Government of South Australia , The State Government of Western Australia , The Government of the Australian Capital Territory and the
Government of the Northern Territory. With the support of this authority
Magellan GPS Systems has produced in Australia the base maps for the Meridian and SporTrak GPS receivers which are preloaded into these receivers in Australia. Any Magellan GPS receiver that has an Australian base map loaded from any other source has breached the copyright agreement with the fore mentioned Governments and is liable for prosecution by each and all of these Governments and by Magellan GPS Systems. Protection of map data is regarded by the providers of Australian map data as extremely important therefore the breaching of mapping data copyright will have serious consequences for anybody found to be using such data. Proof of purchase from an authorised Australian Magellan dealer is required to avoid such penalties.
Magellan MapSend Street data is also supplied from the fore mentioned Governments under licence to Magellan GPS Systems and the copying of this data will have very serious consequences for anybody found to be using such data. Proof of purchase from an authorised Magellan dealer is required to avoid such penalties.
If when as a result of any purchase of non compliant or non copyright products and mapping data being sent to Magellan GPS Systems for support either under warranty or outside warranty, no support can be offered on such products until proof of purchase and therefore copyright is proven. If copyright cannot be proven all cases will be forwarded to the appropriate Government authorities and the receivers will be retained until directed by the Government mapping agency.

Please make up your own mind - I am only passing on the information I receive. We will have the Magellan products loaded into the Adventure Shop by mid next week.Regards
ExplorOz Team - David
--------------------------
Always working, not enough travelling ;-)
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Reply By: GaryInOz - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 13:27

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 13:27
I have been under the impression for a long time that (with the exclusive exception of radar detectors) it has NEVER been illegal to own a radio reciever, only certain transmitters.

This letter has the very distinct smell of the arguement the music industry tried with the "parallel importation" of music CD's. My view is that they would have to establish without a doubt that the third party software installed caused any problem.

It seems the only "checks" they do are to load the Australian data in the unit. If you were to purchase one from overseas you should be able to buy the software from Magellan in Australia. As for "Australian Government standards related to...sale of GPS recievers..." you dont need a licence to own one so where is the reqirement for legislation? I seriously doubt that a "made for Australia" model is produced in the US, so the hardware would be identical. As for the operation in Australian airspace I woudn't expect that commercial aircraft coming into and leaving Australia would be switching in and out the "Australianised" GPS specifications and therefore "...complying with Australian standards..." is garbage; it is meant to be a GLOBAL positioning system, isn't it?

I guess if Magellan wont sell the mapping software alone, or say that it will not work in your unit, you could contact Magellan Australia and US and demand a refund as well as take them to fair trading and the US equivalent for selling a product that is not fit for service, ie a GPS system that cannot be utilized around the world.

Yes, they may have paid a licence fee (doubt whether they would hold "copyright" on it) for the topographical data provided by the governments, but this does not exclude third parties from producing similar but independantly compiled data for sale. If that was the case how many street directories would there be allowed to be published, and haw would Garmin ever get access to the same data?

The real test would be to contact Magellan in Australia and (innocently) explain that you have been unable to find the legislation about the Australian Standards re the GPS units, and could they please supply a copy or tell me exactly where they may be found on the Govenment website. I think that might trip them up a bit.....
AnswerID: 15674

Follow Up By: GaryInOz - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 17:02

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 17:02
Perhaps David from Oz Explorer may like to make the approach as an advertiser of their products. Ask them about after sales service, international warranty claims and "roaming" services. Wouldn't sound too good if Magellan Australia weren't going to live up to their international warranty requirements, now would it? Particularly as this website has a popular bulletin board attached.

A c.c.ed copy to Magellan US of the enquiry would be an idea "to keep the bastards honest".
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Reply By: Member - Melissa - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 14:13

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 14:13
Up front let me say that I don't know anymore about this issue other than what David has published above. However, it raises the question of Magellan GPS units purchase outside Aust. and them brought into the country as a personal possession. I have a friend who spends a lot of time overseas and he did just this. Does this mean that if his unit breaks down, Magellan Aust. won't fix it? If he needs more mapping software, they won't supply it?

:o) MelissaPetrol 4.5L GU Patrol &
Camprite TL8 offroad camper
AnswerID: 15680

Follow Up By: Truckster - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 23:07

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 23:07
From Magellan.com.au
>> CUSTOMER SUPPORT

In the event you purchased your receiver overseas (ie not within the Australia) we will honour the Magellan warranty. Original purchase receipt is still required for overseas purchases.



So all the stuff above is crap? or this is?
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Reply By: CHRIS - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 15:57

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 15:57
IN JAN I PURCHASED A MERIDIAN GOLD GPS AS WELL AS A COPY OF THE MAGELLAN MAP SEND STREETS OF AUSTRALIA FOR QUEENSLAND FROM THEIR LOCAL AGENT. ON LOADING THIS INTO MY COMPUTER I WAS SURPRISED TO FIND JUST THAT TAMWORTH , LISMORE AND ALBURY/WODONGA HAVE NOW MIGRATED TO QLD. AND WARWICK AND CAIRNS AND THE CAIRNS NORTHERN BEACHES HAVE NOW CHANGED THEIR POSITION WITHIN THE STATE. THIS WOULD SEEM TO INDICATE THAT INFORMATION LOADED INTO THIS GPS UNIT COULD BE NOT COMPLETELY CORRECT. I HAVE E-MAILED MAGELLAN REGARDING THIS BUT HAVE HAD NO REPLY. AND THESE WERE TOWNS THAT WERE SHOWN UP ON THE INITIAL START PAGE.
AnswerID: 15692

Follow Up By: Member - Bob - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 16:53

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 16:53
Maybe the people in Tamworth, Lismore and Albury/Wodonga decided it was time for a holiday - you know 'QLD, beautiful one day etc'
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Follow Up By: GaryInOz - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 17:11

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 17:11
Quite obviously there is already an issue of the product not being "fit for service". If there are any third party suppliers of the toplogical data, there would be a reasonable argument that they in fact may have more accurate/reliable data than what Magellan can supply. If the third party data is also inaccurate then I guess it would have to be a hardware fault then,wouldn't it Mr Magellan?!?!
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Follow Up By: GaryInOz - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 17:38

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 17:38
Bob yeah, the plate techtonics in Australia are really something aren't they!
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Follow Up By: Mick n Sal - Friday, Mar 21, 2003 at 00:40

Friday, Mar 21, 2003 at 00:40
Please provide more specific info on the problems with the cairns region data - I was considering the purchase of a Magellan GPS - but if their mapping is that messed up I'll buy a Garmin.

mickclements@austarnet.com.au
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Reply By: Member - Clarry - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 18:31

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 18:31
And doesn't the text from Magellan read well ! Sounds like a grumpy policeman talking to school kids. Hope they get some PR skills for the next chat.
AnswerID: 15709

Reply By: Jimbo - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 20:45

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 20:45
Of course all this is pretty irrelevant if you purchase a basic GPS (without mapping software) from OS (for example the USA) and then use that to interface with a laptop and mapping software. With NO internal mapping software at all, how would this GPS be distinguished from a local one? And it does the "moving map with lap-top" job admirably.

Just wondering!!
AnswerID: 15722

Follow Up By: Truckster - Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 23:08

Thursday, Mar 20, 2003 at 23:08
They can trace your GPS from Serial #'s to see where it came from.....
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FollowupID: 9586

Follow Up By: Jimbo - Friday, Mar 21, 2003 at 18:04

Friday, Mar 21, 2003 at 18:04
Truckster,

There's no physical Serial# on the thing, although different software applications find a thing called "Product ID" - so that might indicate where it came from.

But even if it does, you are legally allowed to purchase the GPS when oversees for your own use - and then bring it back with you . And because there is no internal mapping data it shouldn't be causing any copyright dramas as mentioned by Magellan in David's post.

Incidently, my GPS is a Garmin eTrex which cost me $190 AU including postage - which stacks up quite good against the cheapest price I found here in Aust of $290.
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FollowupID: 9626

Follow Up By: Truckster - Saturday, Mar 22, 2003 at 22:37

Saturday, Mar 22, 2003 at 22:37
Jimbo, Product ID and Serial would be the same thing. they can still trace it and if they want to play hardball like some of the Camera Companies are doing now, they wont. Magellans Website still states that they will honour warranty for machines bought O/S, so Either this bloke has no idea what hes talking about, or the website is wrong, either way a good lawyer would get your work done for free.

Im not doubting it about the your allowed to bring in Legally, and I dont think that Magellan could charge ~$300 to change the base map, even if they do I have it and the program and how-tos on CD. As do around 40 people I know!!! You bought it Legally.

I have imported a Platinum from USA, and would do it again over the price charged, I know Mr Magellan is reading this,
YOUR PRICES ARE WAY TOO EXPENSIVE.

If you want people to buy from you instead of USA, drop the price by 25-40 and MAYBE they will, until then people are going to see the price in the USA of 1/2 your price and go BOLLOX TO Magellan Aust. Specially on Accessories!!

YMMV
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Reply By: Member - Des - Thursday, Mar 27, 2003 at 10:52

Thursday, Mar 27, 2003 at 10:52
Going back to Magellan's reply, I wonder what are the "Australian Government standards that relate to the manufacture and sale of GPS receivers"?

I searched at Standards Australia and there is no Australian Standard for GPS units.

See also Australian Satellite Navigation Strategic Policy, released August 2002. Under the heading "Standards" it talks about future development of "national and preferably international standards". There is no suggestion of them already being in existence.

Nor have I been able to find:
(a) any law, State or federal, that requires "compliance identification" for GPS units sold "into Australia"; or
(b) any "regulatory authority" that would enforce any such law, if it existed.

Magellan doesn't say what these laws or authorities are. Could it be because THEY DON'T EXIST?

As for licensing of maps, was it Auslig or the NSW or Qld mapping service that gave Magellan map data that showed Albury, Tamworth and Lismore to be in Qld? Every map I have ever looked at has towns in the right State at least. It seems fanciful for Magellan to suggest that this data was supplied by the Government mapping services.

Anyway, as Jimbo rightly points out, what have mapping licence fees got to do with the pricing of non-mapping GPS units? (See my comments in previous post that spawned this one.)

Hiding behind claims of Govt licensing costs or regulatory requirements is a convenient fiction, because Magellan is not going to be corrected.



AnswerID: 16230

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