The Michelin Red Book is Europe’s premier restaurant guide. Yes, it’s sponsored by a tire company but its rankings are so highly regarded that an eatery can make or break its reputation based on a star from the guide’s reviewers. It’s big overseas, but not so big over here, which is why ViaMichelin, a GPS device maker and mapping service, has a hard road ahead of them.
The X970 is a twee GPS device that comes with a power cable and base with built-in speaker. It’s fairly basic — program in your destination and go. However, it also includes content from the Michelin Green Guide of famous points of interest and it works with ViaMichelin.com to allow you to drag and drop restaurants and other destinations onto your unit.
The unit itself is quite small and slim. It’s about as big as a Nintendo DS and it has a bright touch screen and all the bells and whistles you’d expect from a device of this size. It will be available soon for about $399 although they’re offering a $349 introductory rate. Their earlier model, the 930, is selling fairly well over here and this one is a definite improvement. We’ll have a full review soon.