Yes, but some people would rather not have a transponder, and for those folks this looks like a very nice receiver.
Me, I got the ACR Class-B transponder over a year ago and couldn't be more pleased. There are now cheaper transponders, and they are probably just as good as mine. The bottom line is that the prices on quality AIS gear
continue to drop. If you want AIS (receiver or transponder), don't wait for the prices to stabilize -- you will be waiting a long time at this stage of AIS product evolution. Pick something that works for you and start learning
how to effectively use it *now*.