March 15, 2006

Quick Rundown of GPS Announcements for CeBIT

So, over the last week there have been a lot of announcements associated with the Germany electronics show - CeBIT.

New TomTom GO 510 GO 910
TomTom announced a new line of receivers the TomTom GO 510, the GO 710 and the GO 910. These all have beautiful widescreens, hands-free Bluetooth calling kits and while the GO 510 has maps loaded on an SD card, the GO 910 offers maps on a 20 GB hard drive and the ability to play MP3's. The new line comes with TomTom HOME software that allows quick and easy data storage, back-ups and more on your computer. On top of this TomTom announced software features and services that extend the capability of the TomTom GO line to allow for fleet management, and when used with a phone, allow you to keep tabs on your buddies. (ReadMore)

Garmin New C series - Garmin C550
Not to be outdone, Garmin announced a whole basket of new models and initiatives. The big announcements centered on their mid-tier line up that will expand to include the Garmin C510, and Garmin StreetPilot C550 . While the C510 will have an optional traffic alert antenna, the Garmin C550 will have an integral FM TDC traffic alert antenna as well as MP3 playing capability. These should be available by second quarter of 2006. (ReadMore)

New Garmin Nuvi 310 and Nuvi 360 plus Garmin Online
Garmin also announced upgrades to the Garmin Nuvi – the Nuvi 310 and the Nuvi 360. They have added Bluetooth calling capabilities to the units. (ReadMore) Garmin also announced the Garmin Mobile 20 – a smart phone mount that has a GPS and GPS capabilities built right into it to GPS enable your Treo or select Nokia phones. With this, these phones will be able to use Garmin Online an online service that will feed traffic updates as well as weather information, and more. Sounds a lot like TomTom Plus. (ReadMore)

BenQ GPS Phones
BenQ Mobile, the company formed in October last year when BenQ Corporation bought Siemens Mobile Devices, got CeBIT 2006 under way with a football-themed launch of six mobile phones, including a Windows Mobile 5-based smartphone with Wi-Fi and a GPS receiver built in. (ReadMore)

New Trimble GPS Chipsets - Copernicus
Trimble announced a new GPS chipset that is small and functions at low power consumption levels. The Ultra-Thin Copernicus GPS Module enables system integrators to easily add GPS capability to a mobile device with minimal impact on its size or battery life at a very economical price. (ReadMore)

Mio announced several GPS units, from stand alone GPS units to mobile phones with GPS capabilities, including the Digiwalker A710. (ReadMore)

One possible future was shown to us - the GPS integrated jacket. So while this might not find its way into every jacket you wear, maybe you'll see it show up in survival suits and emergency responder suits. (ReadMore)

Finally, Microsoft announced the Origami mini tablet computer platform, which will include GPS modules. This starts to get close to where Garmin is going with the Nuvi, and gets powerful computing in a mobile device that will go anywhere with you. So, no, the tablet will not fit in your pocket like a Nuvi, but you can see how the Origami platform will be portable and take you places.

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Posted by Scott Martin at March 15, 2006 9:12 PM

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