Tomtom’s new car kit makes GPS navigation and phone calls easier

Tomtom came out with a new smartphone mounting kit for your windshield that works with iPhones or any other smartphones. The main features is that it includes bluetooth connectivity making phone calls easier. It has an embedded 2W speaker for a much needed audio boost and an extendable microphone so the other side can hear you clearly as well. It supports both portrait and landscape mode, charges your device while you’re on the go and also makes navigation a lot easier with their own GPS navigation app.

Standard default version will cost £80 while the iPhone version will cost £130 which also includes the navigation app.

TomTom Mapshare now open to all TomTom owners

TomTom just announced that they’re enabling all of its 60 million GPS navigation systems to receive daily map changes via the TomTom Map Share community. If you haven’t heard of Map Share before; it is a crowd sourced system that allows drivers to update TomTom map on their own device, but also receive changes from other TomTom users.

With Map Share drivers can quickly share frequent road changes. Some longer term changes such as new roads or roundabouts are validated via TomTom and made available quarterly.

some thoughts on Garmin, TomTom, and Apple

A short and sweet article on InvestorPlace about Garmin, TomTom, and Apple.

Prior to the advent of smartphones in 2007 with the debut of the first iPhone, Garmin was the name in portable global positioning systems (you know, GPS) and satellite-guided driving directions. However, once consumers started to realize smartphones could do the same — as well as play music, be a flashlight and even test the ripeness of a watermelon — the choice became something of a no-brainer: Smartphones win, and Garmin devices lose. The sales numbers and Garmin’s stock price since then have somewhat — though not radically — reflected that opinion.

Apple licences maps with TomTom, Garmin stock lower

Apple just unveiled iOS6 couple of days ago. One of the things we were looking forward to was the new Maps feature in iOS6. The new feature in iOS will stop using Google Maps and will apparently use maps data from TomTom along with map related data. We’re not sure what Apple will be using to generate turn by turn directions when the OS will be released in fall though.

TomTom shares rose 25% within the last 5 days where as Garmin shares lost 5%.

new GPS watch from Nike and Tomtom

Nike just unveiled their new site and at the same time -with TomTom- announced a new models for the Nike+ SportWatch series.

The new thing Nike came up with is Nikefuel which is pretty much your mileage turned into a universal units that also apply to other sports. This way you can have a swimmer compete with a runner somehow.

They have new colors out for the Nike+ Sportwatch which now include black/anthracite, anthracite/blue glow and volt green. The starting price for the entry level one is $150. This does not come with a shoe sensor but it supports it if you decide to buy it after the fact. If you want to get both the shoe sensor and the watch then you’re going to have to pay $169.

ETAK Navigation System

ETAK Navigation System is one of the earliest car-navigation systems developed and is world’s first publicly available automobile-navigation system.

ETAK has a glowing green monitor and contains some of the first digital maps of the Bay Area on a tape. It can show latitude and longitude in addition to freeway signs. The really interesting thing with ETAK navigation system is that it doesn’t positioning satellites to figure out where you are. It uses dead-reckoning. There’s a compass in the back of the car, a large processing unit, and many cassette tapes with the digital maps. The clever part is in the wheels. There are magnetic beads that send information to the computer about how fast the car is going, when it is turning, etc.

Oh. ETAK also can’t give you directions. It only shows you where you are on a map.

Back in late 1980’s this system cost about $1500 and the company is now part of Dutch TomTom.

Read the rest of this entry »

new 6″ GPS navigation systems from TomTom

TomTom has some new GPS navigation systems out. What’s common among these units is that they boast a big 6″ screen - biggest ever for TomTom so far.

These big screen GPS navigation systems from TomTom will be part of the TomTom Start lineup in Europe and TomTom Via in the U.S.

In Europe TomTom Start 60 will offer new dual mounting system which gives you the option to go with either the windshield or the dash. TomTom Start 60 will have lifetime free daily map updates and will cost about EUR 200 or GBP 170.

Some other features of the TomTom Start 60 include advanced lane guidance to help with difficult junctions, IQ routes that keep you informed on traffic updates, spoken street names, and more.

In the US of A the story is about the same only with a different name: TomTom VIA 160. This one is already available on Amazon for $230.

TomTom to keep track of traffic in China

TomTom just landed a 7 year deal to deliver HD Traffic - which provides real time traffic updates - with its Chinese partner AutoNavi. They will start having vehicles on the roads starting in 2013. First of their customers is Qoros which is a joint venture between Chery Automobile and Israel Corp.

TomTom’s stock surged after the news which has been focusing on making deals, such as this, with car makers to provide in dash solutions and live traffic updates network.

TomTom PRO 3100 lowers your insurance premium

TomTom announced in UK that it will work with Motaquote to lower down your insurance premium cost by tracking how you drive with their new TomTom PRO 3100. It’s a new policy called Fair Pay insurance which “reward good drivers with a lower bill but in return you’re giving up your privacy.

When you sign up you’ll get the LIVE services working on your GPS navigation device to warn you about speed cameras and accident hot spots and more. It can even warn you if there’s sudden breaking on your route. Of course the feedback is with the LINK tracking unit. This will inform Motaquote on your driving habits which you can also check yourself or get them in your email.

TomTom is trying to differentiate itself from others by providing services like this. In times when smartphones have a sharp 4.3” screen, constant connectivity and free GPS navigation apps they really have to try hard.

TomTom to power Samsung’s Wave 3 Bada Maps

TomTom made a deal with Samsung where TomTom maps will power Samsung Wave3. With this agreement Samsung Wave 3 Bada gets:

  • Map coverage for 200+ countries which equals to 35 million kilometers roads
  • Points of interests on these maps
  • 3D City Maps and 3D Landmarks
  • Traffic updates
  • Speed Cameras alerts