Raphael Orlove on Jalopnik:
The last and best feature of the car is Honda’s GPS solution: it’s your phone. You can order the car with navigation for something around $1500, or you can download the HondaLink app from Honda for $59.99 and get something better. With the app, the car will display your phone’s GPS on its seven-inch display. That means as you upgrade your phone, you’ll be upgrading your GPS, too. I can’t think of a better system.
This summer, we got a newer car which came with a built-in navigation system. That thing is practically useless. It locks itself while the car is moving — presumably for safety reasons — which makes it inaccessible even for a passenger to use. The input is clunky, slow, and doesn’t contain many points of interest, aside from gas stations and convenience stores, which are prominently displayed and (since not every chain is present) which probably paid sponsorships for that right.
The last time the maps were updated was probably when it was installed 5 years ago, and in construction-happy Japan, that means that some of the routes even in major cities are sometimes obsolete. The menus are deep and not very intuitive. To add insult to injury, it’s impossible to turn the screen off once you start moving. It turns itself on automatically every time you turn on the car. So even if you don’t want the damn thing on, it’s on, unless you manually turn it off. Every. Single. Time.
After a couple of attempts to use it, my wife and I both agreed that it was terrible, and that we’d prefer to just use our iPhones instead. I told her that I wished they just had a dock for charging, with an adjustable spot or insert for an iPad or iPhone, instead of the navigation system. It looks like someone at Honda had similar annoyances and solutions. Good; that option should be standard for all cars from now on.