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+ - English GPS maps of Japan?

Submitted by leeet
leeet (543121) writes "I've been to Japan numerous times but this time I'm going backpacking in rural places for 1 month. Being a geek I told myself that everything will be fine with my trusted GPS. I just need to upload Japan's map and I'll be set.

There it hit me right in the face. You can find a lot of maps (even for many countries in Africa) but Japan isn't listed on any of the big GPS manufacturers...!

I know Japanese do things differently (my wife is Japanese!) so I asked her what she'd do. Her answer was simple: just use your cell phone. Right but I'm a "gaijin" and I won't have a cell phone over there! And I can barely read Japanese so using a Japanese cell phone (or reading a Japanese map) is out of question...

I did find some GPS devices (in Japanese — of course) but finding English maps, on an English device, has proven a futile exercice. I did find some sort of hack with a Garmin device. You need to install a Japanese firmware, but this won't my readability issue...

I'm pretty much open to any practical solution. I don't mind spending some money for the right device. iPod and Google maps is out of question because of the Wifi coverage dependency. Then I thought about netbooks with built-in GPS (like the Dell Mini). This is not very practical but could be an acceptable compromise.

I'm sure that one Slashdot's reader must have a solution for this simple problem!"
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English GPS maps of Japan?

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