"We have long believed in the ability of GPS technology to deliver potential life-saving capabilities and our Rino products are an extension of that belief," said Dr. Min Kao, co-CEO and co-chairman of Garmin Ltd. "Our success has been the result of a committed investment in the research and development of new technologies and new products and this patent is further evidence of our leadership and innovation."
The Rino (Radios Integrated with Navigation for the Outdoors) radios combine Garmin’s proven GPS technology with popular two-way voice communications on the Family Radio Service (FRS) and General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS). The radios have standard FRS/GMRS features (22 channels, 38 squelch codes and external voice activation) and versatile GPS navigation capabilities (12-channel WAAS-enabled receiver, multiple grid formats, storage for 500 waypoints, 20 reversible routes, trip computer, and stopwatch functions). And the Rino radios are the only FRS/GMRS radios that are waterproof. The base model (Rino 110) offers basic two-way voice communications and GPS features. The upscale version (Rino 120) adds a voice scrambler, vibrating silent-call option, a basemap of North and South America with highways and lakes, and 8 MB of internal memory for downloading detailed electronic map data from Garmin’s exclusive MapSource CD-ROM products.
The patent covers the "peer-to-peer position reporting" feature on the Rino radios — which is made possible by the combination of GPS and two-way radio technologies. So at the touch of a button, you can transmit your position over the FRS spectrum (two-mile range) to a friend’s Rino. Your precise location is then displayed on your friend’s Rino, including distance and bearing from his or her position to yours — creating a useful feature to round up a family at an amusement park or efficiently rescue someone in an outdoor emergency.
The first Rino products — the Rino 110 and Rino 120 — are both expected to be available this summer and have suggested retail prices of $211 and $311, respectively.