December 23, 2006

TomTom wins Round II versus Garmin; Well Not Really

Update: It appears that we didn't have the Garmin side of thing when we wrote this.....

Originally, it appeared that TomTom won round II in the Garmin vs. TomTom patent dispute, but it appears that this may be a draw. Garmin won round I over in Europe. But, like any fight, there are three rounds to this story, as there is another patent dispute coming up in a couple of months in Texas. So if you read Garmin's press release, they indicate that the judge did not support the charges that TomTom brought alleging that Garmin infringed on 3 patents that they licensed in the US. The judgement also does not support the charges that TomTom is infringing on Garmin patents.

The most recent suit was dismissed in a summary judgement, "The decision finds that all five Garmin patents asserted against TomTom in the lawsuit are either invalid or not infringed by TomTom's popular line of navigation products," said the judgement.

In a bit of an odd statement coming on the heels of their own wasteful court battle in Europe, TomTom Chief Executive officer Harold Goddijn said in a statement, "We are hopeful that Garmin will return to competing in the marketplace instead of wasting resources on litigation."

When you are talking billions of dollars in sales, and millions of dollars in profits, that's just how the game is played Harold, you know that.

Garmin's side: "We are pleased with Judge Crabb's rejection of TomTom's infringement claims against Garmin", said Andrew Etkind, Garmin's General Counsel. "Garmin will continue to take all necessary action against those who misappropriate the innovations developed by Garmin's engineers. While Garmin would prefer not to litigate, it will not stand idly by and allow others, like TomTom, to exploit Garmin's technology." I guess no comment on whether or not their patents are actually valid.... which is apparently up in the air. again, we'll see more in Round III.

Garmin's press release

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

December 20, 2006

New North American Map Updates for TomTom - Special Prices

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TomTom let me know this morning that they released their map updates for their personal navigation devices, and they are available for a limited time at a reduced price of $49. The deal is good through February 9,2007. What's in the TomTom Map Updates? The new update features 410,000 miles of new roads in the US and Canada, six million POI, including half a million new POI and should really fill in a lot of blanks for users.

The normal cost is $149, so the limited time offer is a pretty good deal. See the FAQ at the link below for more details, and how you can back up your favorites file because if you don't the map update can wipe them out.

Go to the TomTom Website for more details

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (3) | social bookmarking

December 15, 2006

TomTom without SiRF?

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So some speculation has hit the newsroom over what may be a strategy for TomTom to trim costs and move to a more competitive situation when sourcing key components of their GPS line. Key components can drive the costs of the finished product, and lately we've seen TomTom, a long time TeleAtlas user, move to NAVTEQ maps for the TomTom RIDER. Some analysts are speculating that TomTom may be looking at Global Locate a chip provider and NOT SiRF for their next generation TomTom ONE device. TomTom essentially declined to comment about the speculation.

Aside: Hummm, next generation TomTom ONE; what could that look like? Whatever it is, price will be a driving factor on the sales prospect if the events of the last three weeks is any indicator of how high is up on the GPS market.


ReadMore at Reuters

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

December 13, 2006

TomTom Ad Out Take and Blooper Reels

So we came across this blooper reel on You Tube that has some funny out takes from the the ads supporting the TomTom GiveGive campaign. The GiveGive runs through early January, and gets you $100 off any TomTom, dropping the TomTom ONE to a very respectable $399 at Amazon, and lower at other online locations like $290 after mail in rebate at TheNerds. Definitely some prices to get excited about.


If you want to look at others go to the TomTom Out Take Channel.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

December 5, 2006

Philips Kills GPS Plans

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Philips will not enter the GPS navigation market as earlier announced. The decision was arrived at because Phillips says that the declining prices and margins make the market unattractive as many other manufacturers are rushing into the market, driving average retail prices down. Philips is the largest European electronics manufacturer, and one has to think that the folks at TomTom are breathing a sigh o relief.

Philips announced their intention to get into the market last June, then we got a glimpse of the new Philips GPS units (PNS 100, 120, 150) in July, and then finally in September they announced a delay of the GPS entries into the market, citing at the time, "We are still very motivated and committed to enter this market." I guess it just wasn't in the cards.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

November 30, 2006

The Trouble with TeleAtlas Maps and What's the Future Direction

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I wanted to get this up and posted about what my opinions are on TeleAtlas, and where I think things are going. Many people familiar with the GPS world have come across the dialog that TeleAtlas maps in the US are not as accurate, or are not as up to date as people think they should be. Me included.

From what I have seen, the GPS units that have used NAVTEQ maps are more up to date versus those that use TeleAtlas. I think that TeleAtlas is changing and is on the move to update their maps quickly, making step changes in their accomplishments, and not just small mediocre incremental changes. Why do I think this?

ArrowContinue reading: "The Trouble with TeleAtlas Maps and What's the Future Direction"

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (3) | social bookmarking

November 28, 2006

TomTom Quick Fix

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TomTom has announced the ability to give you faster satellite fix times with their program called TomTom QuickGPSFix. If you have a TomTom GO 510 or TomTom GO 910, you can take advantage of this nice little capability. These two units have the ability to predict satellite positions for the next 7 days, so when you turn the GPS on, it knows where to look for satellites instead of scanning the entire sky.

How to get TomTom Quick Fix? Simple. Connect your TomTom GO 510 or GO 910 to your computer running TomTom HOME at least once per week, and it will download these prediction tables. Can't do that? Connect through your Bluetooth phone to any TomTom PLUS service and it will download the predictions for the next week. Remember, to take advantage of this capability you'll need to connect at least once per week.


More at TomTom

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

November 19, 2006

TomTom Rebate Form - $50 off

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Thanks to reader John S who sent this in. We have the the TomTom Rebate form available here. The TomTom rebate is available for the tomTom GO 300, GO700, GO510, GO910, ONE, and Rider.

The rebate is good for purchases November 22 through December3. See our Black Friday post for deals on GPS units.

Download TomTom Rebate Form

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (2) | social bookmarking

November 10, 2006

What is TomTom Plus?

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The TomTom PLUS services are a great way for you to get more out of your TomTom. If you have a Bluetooth connected data capable phone you can download all sorts of things while on the go with your TomTom. A lot of the services cost money, but that's OK when you see what you can get. You can download additional maps, new voices, weather updates and forecasts, and live traffic feeds. While TomTom is getting into TMC traffic feeds, they are and have been primarily using the TomTom PLUS service through bluetooth phones to get you live traffic. In the US, the same traffic provider gets you the traffic data, so there is no data difference in what you are getting.

You can use TomTom PLUS services from any of the units currently on the market: The TomTom ONE, the TomTom GO 510, or the GO 910.

More at TomTom

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (3) | social bookmarking

October 26, 2006

$50 off TomTom's this Holiday Season

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TomTom said it will run a “GiveGive” promotion offering $50 off any TomTom portable GPS device in stores and online from Nov. 22 through Dec. 3, just in time for the big holiday rush. I guess they weren't happy with selling over a million units last quarter, they want to sell a lot more this quarter. This is the first time TomTom has run a promo like this. You'll find TomTom's in 16,000 outlets these days, including Target which just started selling the TomTom ONE GPS.

No word if it's going to be a straight drop in price, or a fun loving mail a bunch of paper in and get your money in 8 weeks type rebate....(I hate rebates, don't you?). Let's hope for a price drop.


Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

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