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Garmin nüvifone merges personal navigation and communications
Posted on 31-Jan-2008 21:56. | Tags Filed under: News.

Garmin nüvifone merges personal navigation and communications
Garmin International Inc. is entering into the mobile phone market with the nüvifone, an all-in-one, slim, touchscreen device that combines a premium phone, mobile web-browser, and personal navigator.

Th company says the nüvifone is designed to transform how individuals connect, communicate and navigate their life.

“The nüvifone is an all-in-one device offering unmatched integration of utility and function in a single mobile device,” said Cliff Pemble, Garmin’s president and COO. “This is the breakthrough product that cell phone and GPS users around the world have been longing for — a single device that does it all.”

The nüvifone has a wide range of advanced use features. The all touchscreen device integrates 3.5G mobile phone capability with an internet browser, data connectivity, personal messaging, and personal navigation functions in one device.

When powered on, the 3.5-inch touchscreen display reveals three primary icons — “Call,” “Search,” and “View Map” which allow the user to manage the nüvifone’s functions.

If the nüvifone is docked onto the vehicle mount, it automatically turns on the GPS, activates the navigation menu, and enables hands-free calling.

It includes preloaded maps of North America, Eastern and Western Europe, or both, and allows drivers to quickly find a specific street address, establishment’s name or search for a destination by category using the nüvifone’s built-in database with millions of points of interest.

Turn-by-turn, voice-prompted directions guide the user to their destination. If they miss a turn along the route, nüvifone automatically recalculates a route and gets them back on track, speaking the names of the streets along the way.

The nüvifone is Garmin’s first device to include Google local search capability. Nüvifone users can search for locations like “coffee shops” and Google will sort the results based on the user’s current location and relevance. Information provided by Google includes a web-based rating so that users can select the most appropriate destination and route directly to it. In addition, the nüvifone includes a web browser incorporating premium features and touchscreen operation for an optimum mobile browsing experience. The nüvifone also includes personal messaging functions, including email, text, and instant messaging.

The nüvifone also includes numerous mobile entertainment applications. The built-in camera allows individuals to take a picture that will automatically be tagged with the exact latitude and longitude reference of where the image was taken. The user may then save the image so they can navigate back to the location, or email the image to a recipient who can navigate directly to the location. The nüvifone also provides direct access to geo-located landmark and sightseeing photographs available through Google’s Panoramio picture sharing site.

The Panoramio photo search feature enhances the enjoyment and adventure of sightseeing in an otherwise unfamiliar location. Other multimedia functions of the nüvifone include a built-in video camera, MP3 and MPEG4/AAC.

Garmin anticipates that the nüvifone will be available in the third quarter of 2008. Specific details about pricing and sales partners will be announced in the future.

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