Navigon has announced a new way to get their iPhone navigation - Mobile Navigator with regional maps. Don't need the whole US? Why pay for it is the idea. The limited mapset comes at a limited price - Navigon Mobile Navigator with MyRegion for $25; additional regions are $13. The US is divided up into three regions: Eastern, Central and Western - and they all download to the iPhone upon purchase, but you only get access to the region you bought. Need another region - buy it in the App, and get access immediately.
Navigon MyRegion is a full featured application with turn-by-turn directions, Google local Search, Reality view of the road ahead, and optional Traffic-live, an add-on that grabs some pretty sophisticated traffic feeds and renders a very accurate traffic picture for you.
U.S. East map: AL, CT, DE, FL, GA, IN, KY, MA, ME, MD, MI, NH, NJ, NY, NC, OH, PA, RI, SC, TN, VT, VA, WV
U.S. Central map: AL, AR, CO, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NE, NM, ND, OH, OK, SD, TN, TX, WI, WY
U.S. West map: AZ, CA, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, OR, UT, WA, WY
Just in case you thought that things were settling into a nice Garmin v. TomTom and iPhone v. Android war with neatly drawn lines, Nokia is launching the Noika Nuron 5230 in the US that will come with onboard maps, and integrated navigation capabilities; Nokia, you know, the owners of NAVTEQ - the map maker who stars in the NAVTEQ v. TeleAtlas wars.
The Nuron is Symbian based and is coming out in a few weeks for the T-Mobile system and has a 3.2-inch display and is Nokia's first US phone with on board navigation. The phone will come with a $39/mo minimum plan plus a $10/mo dataplan, making it line up pretty well with other smartphone offerings in the market. What makes it stand out is that it is only $69 for the phone.
It will have driving and pedestrian routing, as well as lane assistance built in. The phone also comes with free real-time traffic updates, event and movie listings, and weather forecasts. Of course, just in case you need more, you can get it from the full HTML browser.
TomTom is making the move into connected traffic services for their iPhone application and its release is just around the corner. The HD Traffic option will not only add higher definition traffic reporting, through high quality updates of traffic flow and incident reporting, but also offer insight into accurate duration of your trip, and alternate routes. The big question will be how detailed the reporting will be on smaller side roads. Without traffic reads on side roads, many navigation systems will erroneously recommend a "faster" route on the the side road that is actually clogged worse than the highway.
Press Release is below.....
A number of new services and features are coming soon to the TomTom app for iPhone, including TomTom HD Traffic for real-time traffic speed and incident reports, and Local Search powered by Google. The latest update to the TomTom app for iPhone (version 1.3), which has been submitted to Apple for review, will offer these and other soon-to-be-announced enhancements to ensure an optimal, and even more intuitive, navigation experience.
"TomTom is fully committed to offering TomTom app users the services and features they demand most," said Tom Murray, vice president of market development for TomTom Inc. "The latest update to the TomTom app for iPhone offers our highly sought-after real-time traffic service option, enhanced point-of-interest search capabilities and a wide range of other features."
Navigon continues to innovate in rapid fire fashion with some big enhancements to their iPhone platforms announced today. Some may shrug off the social networking thing, others will love it if you use Facebook or Twitter. The big innovation here is the move to start customizing routes based on outside factors, like your driving habits, patters and time of day. The MyRoutes feature starts down the pathway of some very sophisticated planning of routes that go way beyond "Fastest", or "Avoid Toll Roads".
Connection to Facebook and Twitter: A simple icon tap posts users current position, destination, and ETA without navigation interruption.
Panorama View 3D: True 3D in-map views obtained from NASA's height and terrain data enable intuitive orientation of surrounding environment, and what lies ahead with digital landscape elevations, shadows, and geographic images. Panorama View 3D is integrated in-map, independent from the phone's data connection. The Panorama View 3D feature will be available via an In App Purchase.
NAVIGON MyRoutes: Analyzes driving habits, patterns, location, time/day and provides up to three routes clearly displayed in-map with ETA, distance and driving times for each.
Garmin is releasing its third smartphone in the line, and from the looks here, a much improved version of the previous ones. It will be loaded with the windows mobile operating system and have a 3.5-inch touchscreen. With 4GB of internal memory and up to 32GB of optional microSD card capacity, the phone will be primed for plenty of photos through its 5 megapixel camera. Of course because it's a Garmin, the photos will be automatically tagged with the location that they were taken through the automatic geoencoding.
It's no secret that Apple is going to announce some form of an iTablet today, that will, according to Steve Job's hopes, revolutionize the media market. With a 10-inch screen and the fact that it will buy and use Apps from the iTunes Apps store to run on its version of the iPhone OS, one has to wonder if it will in fact run a navigation program.
With Location Based services all the rage these days, you would hope that Apple has the foresight to add a GPS chip to the thing, so why wouldn't TomTom, Navigon, Co-Pilot Live, and others run on the iTablet device? I am sure there are a lot of reasons, but I want to see it happen.
Trimble continues to keep the product cycle moving with recent upgrades on the Android platform with their Outdoors product (Press release below), while continuing to iterate on the iPhone App too. The idea of being able to track your training can be of great value that in my opinion deserves more widespread use. I know a lot of runners who travel a lot on business and die for that insight into where to run and what to do when in a different city each week.
Trimble not only tracks your progress with a set of dashboards and uploads them to your account wirelessly. not only can you keep track on your phone, but if you need to you can also turn to them for inspiration on where to workout - hundreds of thousands of saved routes for you to choose from helping you to keep in shape.
The latest capabilities include
Best-of-class out-of-network GPS capability - Users can now count on having a digital guidebook of their content, including maps, photos, trip directions and other information, almost anywhere and even out of network. Trimble Outdoors helps users navigate their way on new excursions and gives superior tools to stay on track.
Multi-media capability - User can journal activities by capturing pictures, videos, and voice recordings. Share the adventure with friends and family or with all users on the Trimble Outdoors Web site or using the Trimble Outdoors Facebook application.
Easy user interface - From the weekend hiker to the avid backpacker, Trimble Outdoors on the Android platform is extremely easy to use. All activities and functionalities are activity-centric and designed to help users get started quickly.
Online content - Users can directly access content from the trimbleoutdoors.com Web site right from the phone. Powerful search functions provide direct access to thousands of professionally edited adventures in the user's area or wherever their travels take them.
Navigon, an early mover on the iPhone App platform, and the market share leader for on-board persistent navigation Apss, has announced that they are going to be launching a Navigation App for the Android and Windows Mobile platform. The very full featured program will include a lot of the key attributes to make up a serious offering in the product including: Pre-loaded on, board maps, text to speech (says road names), Reality View and Lane Assist to help in navigating complex intersections, 2D and 3D views, automatic Day to Night brightness settings, auto Portrait/Landscape switch, and more.
I have to say that just as Navigon exited the US market for stand alone GPS devices, their interface was starting to roll, eliminating some of the real rough spots. While they still maintain an overseas business for standalone navigation devices, their approach to the iPhone App market has been ferocious with upgrade after upgrade, and strong price moves to keep them well positioned in the market. Should be interesting to see how they move in the up and coming Android market. The Android product will be available this Spring, while the Windows product is available now at a special $69 price at PocketGear.
Dual has announced a new cradle that enables GPS navigation on the iPod touch through their own navigation application. The cradle offers an amplified speaker, and a battery for extended use - a plus since the iPhone battery only offers a few hours of dedicated GPS use which totally kills the battery with no hope of phone use when you get to your destination. The featureset must be pretty good because the device received the CES 2010 Innovation Award also.
The navigation app features a fair number of capabilities that make it sounds pretty reasonable. Text to speech, 3D views of buildings, play music while navigating, and a few others that make the app seem like a reasonable entrant. The app is free with the cradle, so we'll see how it looks when it hits the iTunes store.
Don't plan on using your iPhone - Dual says that it will break the cradle.
TomTom has released a US only navigation App in the iTunes store that is bargain priced at $49 through 12/28. The application brings the upgrade features that were recently released, including text to speech and lane guidance in tough highway intersections. I reviewed the earlier version and liked it a lot, calling for improvements that were delivered in the recent upgrade. So far using the latest version I have been impressed.