You probably know the name Rand McNally from their maps and Atlases. They also have a pretty complete line of GPS units for cars, trucks, and RVs. Now, Rand McNally is introducing their first hand held or bike mounted GPS unit specifically designed with the outdoor set in mind. The Rand McNally Foris provides another option for your mapping needs whether you’re hiking, biking, or geocaching. Maybe most interesting is the “Loop Me” feature which will provide options for a trail that begins and ends in the same spot – pretty useful if you’re not familiar with the local trails!
Find your way past the break.
Inside the box you’ll find the Foris 850, a bike mount, two AA batteries, an Anti-Glare screen protector, USB cable and the start up guide. The GPS itself weighs about 9oz with batteries, and has 8GB of memory with an additional Micro SD slot. That 8GB of storage is good for 7,000 waypoints and 1,000 tracks. Built to be as rugged as possible, the IPX7 rated waterproof unit has a 3″ touchscreen, a 3 axis compass, and barometric altimeter.
Take the Foris out of the box and you will find more than 5 million (!) miles of roads and trails preloaded onto the device. Trails include National and State parks and forests, Rails-to-trails biking and hiking trails, and US street and contour maps with water features. Using these preloaded features you can get your way with visual and spoken turn-by-turn directions. Not sure which route to take? You can compare three alternate routes with elevation profiles. As mentioned the “loop me” feature sounds really cool, which creates a loop trail that is customizable by distance, time, or elevation. Finally, you can turn any GPS track into a route with turn by turn directions with TrackNav.
The Rand McNally Foris 850 will retail for $399.
We will update this post in a bit with some additional info, and should have a hands on first look soon!
1) Does it work with any ANT+ or Bluetooth accessories like speed/cadence sensors, heart rate monitors or power meters commonly found on bicycles?
This particular device does not, but we are exploring this for future products.
2) Are there international maps, or just North America? Are they updated for free for life?
We are compatible with Falk Outdoor GPS products (Falk is our hardware partner), so yes, European maps are available. Unlike car navigation products, lifetime map updates are not typically provided in the Outdoor category. If the category moves in that direction, we will be competitive.
3) Can ride data be downloaded and shared via Strava, Training Peaks, etc?
We support the common GPX standard for ride data for exchange to/from the unit for sharing. Additionally and uniquely, we can turn GPX data into turn by turn bike navigation, on the unit. So any GPX file sent to the unit, can be turned into an actual route with guidance, not just a breadcrumb trail.