New GPS device makes schlepping around Eretz Yisroel easy

No need to feel like a 'shmendrik' anymore - new GPS speaks Yiddish.

gps 88 (photo credit: )
gps 88
(photo credit: )
Oy gevalt! You can sure feel like a schlemiel getting around Eretz Yisroel sometimes. Especially if you're a kvetch who doesn't have the chutzpa to ask for directions because you only speak Yiddish. But there's no need to feel like a shmendrik anymore, because beginning this week, the iGO8 Judaism GPS is available in Yiddish - it's their latest shtick. The machers at iGO, a subsidiary of Nav N Go, have designed the new device for the Orthodox market in Israel. Now Yiddish-speakers in areas such as Jerusalem, Bnei Brak, Modi'in Illit and Ashdod can use the product to locate more than 10,000 unique Jewish interest points - including the addresses and telephone numbers of thousands of synagogues, mikves (ritual baths) and kosher restaurants. What also distinguishes it from other GPS gadgets is that more secular points of interest - such as nightclubs, non-kosher restaurants and Internet cafes - are not in the database. Even the interface is designed with the religious consumer in mind - when the device is switched on, the user is automatically shown the Travelers' Prayer. Instead of pressing "OK" to skip to the next screen, the option is instead "Amen." It may give you naches to discover that the new Yiddish version was not based on any market research or overwhelming demand. David Wiernik, Nav N Go president, says the idea was born at an iGO press conference last month, when a technology journalist asked him if a Yiddish version was in the pipeline. Upon answering "no," Wiernik realized he liked the suggestion. "I looked at the journalist and thought, 'You got me. I'd never thought about it,' so I told him I would accept the challenge. My immediate response was 'yes,' without even looking at the consumer market." A mensch, no? Many in the know are positive about this new meshuggener gadget. Yossi Gur, manager of the Avis branch in the capital's Romema neighborhood, says: "We have a lot of Orthodox customers in this location, many of whom speak Yiddish, and two-thirds of them ask for a GPS. This new device is a great idea, and it would work really well in our station." The Yiddish edition reaches stores one month and $20,000 (what it cost to develop) after the iGO8 Judaism Hebrew version, and is exclusively available with QUE navigation devices. It is priced at between NIS 1,200 and NIS 1,499.