I guess because of the sheer size of Australia. Its a massive and expensive task for any GPS mapping company to map such a vast country / continent and it's road / rail infrastructure.
I believe WhereIs (Sensis) is the only company who actually maps and digitized the Australian maps - all other navigation companies e.g. Tomtom, Navman, Mio etc. are using this Sensis map with their presentation software. This monopoly of Sensis may add the cost.
It might also be because there are only approx 28 million people in Australia.
There is a lot more in Europe, USA, etc. The cost would be split between the potential amount of people that would buy it.
Well, the new 'Winter 2009' maps have just been released. Cost $140 for my 930, and supposed to have lots of country map improvements. I decided to go fo it - will report if they are any better in the next few weeks.
I would also like to know if it worth updating, coming back from queensland to nsw via the inland road I noticed a few areas that were wrong. my original idea was to update every 3 years, but then i read earlier that it is almost as good to go for a new unit, considering that it should be improved I will also be thinking of this.
I bought the tom tom 730 Dec 08. In Jan bought new map. Guess what... still 6 years out of date so now another new maps available, would like to know how uptodate they really are. Even checking the Sensis web map is outdated. The only reliable online mapping is not used by Tomtom
I have recently purchased 2 Tom Tom V140 GPS's supposeling with the latest maps, well that does not appear to be the case in Melbourne, new freeway's that have been open prior to purchsing thes units are in the maps but are not active, they indicate they are proposed, but in fact are open and have been for some time.
I am very hesident to purchase new Australian Maps at $130 plus due to purchasing these units suppoosely that have the latest maps.