October 13, 2007

Garmin Mobile Phone News

More non-news and speculation on the Garmin Mobile Phone coming out yesterday as Investor’s Business Daily mentioned the possibility of Garmin coming out with a Mobile Phone GPS navigator combo unit. The backstory of course is that Noika is making the move into GPS navigation in a bigger way by pulling in NAVTEQ, while Garmin is moving the other way with a mobile phone launch. My hunch is that neither market would be easy to get into in a quality and solid entry.

Garmin Spokeswoman Jessica Myers said, “We announce 70 products a year so there are a lot of concepts and ideas that we look at, however that's not in the immediate plans. I can't say we're never ever going to do it. I mean, we've already done it." And they have – it was called the Garmin NavTalk.

Garmin already got into the mobile handset market in 1999 with their Garmin NavTalk model, and were clearly ahead of their time with a navigator and mobile phone in one. Navigation and Location Based Services have taken huge leaps since then, and I would imagine that the offerings these days would be a lot more marketable.

As an aside, a lot of people were really critical of the Nokia NAVTEQ deal and its effect on Garmin when the news was announced; driving the stock down below $95 from its perch at or around $119. Uncertainty must have worked their way through the system, as Garmin stock closed yesterday at a more solid $113.

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Posted by Scott Martin at October 13, 2007 9:55 AM

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