garmin

Back in July, the popular navigation service provider Garmin released their Head-Up Display (HUD) Dashboard Mounted Windshield Projector. The extra hardware costs around $120, which can add a serious dent to your navigation budget. On the other hand, you can relive ‘Top Gun’ memories by pretending your sedan is really a Grumman F-14 Tomcat. At least that’s my hope.

HUD technology is often found in luxury cars these days, so if you drive a Mercedes this is probably redundant. If not, the device works by projecting navigation information right onto your windshield (you stick a little translucent sticker to your window for higher visibility). Information displayed includes speed, traffic and safety camera alerts, current and max speed limits, ETA to destination, Lane Assist and distance to next turn. The idea is simple: keep your eyes in front of you, on the road, at all times.

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Garmin has announced the release of heads-up display (HUD) that connects to your Windows Phone via Bluetooth. The HUD unit will project navigation information on to your windshield.  This will help increase safety and reduce driver distraction when using your Windows Phone as a navigational tool.  By projecting the navigational information in the driver's line of sight, it keeps their eyes more on the road.

The Garmin HUD is compatible with any Bluetooth enabled smartphone running Garmin Streetpilot or NAVIGON apps. HUD displays turn arrows, distance to the next turn, current speed, and the estimated time of arrival. Additional display options include alerts for when drivers exceed the speed limit, traffic delays and safety camera locations.

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Garmin Streetpilot, the popular Windows Phone navigation app, has been updated to add a few new features to the mix. Most notably Foursquare, Facebook and Wikipedia integration.

While there isn't an official change log, here are some features we've noticed.

  • Create and save routes with multiple stops with Trip Planner
  • 3D building map layer
  • Public transportation is now displayed on the map as a layer
  • Wikipedia links map layer
  • Facebook and 4Square integration allowing you to check in/out of locations
  • Use of the compass (device dependent) 

We've also noticed the start-up time and overall speed of Garmin Streetpilot has improved as well.  Throw in a few cosmetic changes to the map view and the update covers a lot of territory.

Oh, speaking of cosmetic changes you have downloadable voices that includes a Yeti, Elfred the Elf and Dr. Nightmare voice.  You also have a healthy choice of automobile icons to download ranging from Star Wars to Sponge Bob icons.  While the update adds a lot to Garmin Streetpilot, I still wouldn't mind seeing downloadable apps come into play at some point.

There is a free trial version available for Garmin Streetpilot and the full version will run you $29.99. You can find Streetpilot here at the Windows Phone marketplace.  If you find something we've missed with this update, feel free to share in the comments.

Thanks goes out to everyone who tipped us on this!

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Garmin StreetPilot on sale? Say it ain't so

Looking for a good navigation app for your Windows Phone? Do you want to save a few bucks? Take a look at the Garmin StreetPilot navigation app for your Windows Phone. We were just tipped that the price fell ten bucks from $39.99 to $29.99.

You may not have on-board maps as you do with Navigon but StreetPilot is an excellent navigation app within its own right (here's our review). There is a trial version available to let you try it before investing in the full version.

StreetPilot was recently updated to mango so you'll need to be running Windows Phone 7.5. You can find Garmin StreetPilot here at the Windows Phone Marketplace.

Thanks goes out to Dan for the tip!

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Garmin Streetpilot goes Mango

Garmin Streetpilot (here's our review) was updated today and now is Mango-ized. While some of the changes are obvious, others are not.

The pre-Mango version is version 7.2 with the Mango version being 7.3. There is a decent amount of design changes put into place but the only noticeable feature change is the addition of a Contacts Tile on the "Where to?" page that opens up your Windows Phone contact list.

Streetpilot does have a little more zip to it and the fast-resume feature of Mango. The settings are identical but also experienced a slight make-over. Should we discover more changes, we'll update the post. And should you run across any, feel free to share in the comments section.

There is a free trial version of Streetpilot available with the full version running $34.99. You can find Garmin's Streetpilot here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

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Garmin adds trial version to StreetPilot

The Garmin StreetPilot is a very good navigation app for your Windows Phone. But at $39.99 some may not be prepared to take a leap of faith. When first released (here's our review) StreetPilot did not have a trial version which made several hesitant to make such a leap.

Fortunately, Garmin has added a trial version to StreetPilot to allow everyone to try before they spend the $40. There's no details on how the trial version is limited.  If Garmin follows suit with the other navigation apps, the trial will be fully functional but limited to how far you can route trips (10-15 mile range).

You can download your free trail of Garmin StreetPilot here (opens Zune) over at the Marketplace.

Thanks goes out to Vanessa for the tip!

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Garmin StreetPilot - Review

Garmin recently released StreetPilot over at the Windows Phone Marketplace. StreetPilot looks really good, is feature rich but carries a healthy price tag ($39.99). While the high price might be justified, Garmin doesn't provide a trial version to StreetPilot to allow Windows Phone users a chance to try it out first before investing the non-refundable $40.

Over the past few days we've taken StreetPilot out for a test drive and after tinkering with StreetPilot, it appears the navigation app is worth the $40 based on the number of features.  But, is it worth the $40 with regards to performance? Well...that may be a different story.

Ease on past the break to read more on StreetPilot and see how it measures up to the sticker price.

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Garmin StreetPilot hits the Marketplace

Garmin StreetPilot has been released over at the Windows Phone Marketplace. The GPS/Navigation app joins a host of other voice navigation apps already in place for your Windows Phone such as Turn by Turn Navigation, GPS Voice Navigation and aSpass.

Garmin designed their Windows Phone app to share similar features found on Garmin's Nuvi stand alone personal navigators. To minimize data needs, maps are downloaded for areas relevant to your planned route. Garmin StreetPilot also includes real-time traffic updates.

Additional features includes:

  • Voice-prompted, turn-by-turn directions including street names
  • Real-time traffic updates included at no additional cost
  • Automatic map storage so you can browse maps you've recently viewed outside of data coverage areas
  • Speed limits for most major roads
  • Integrated Local Search
  • Millions of points of interest
  • Lane assist with junction view for complicated interchanges
  • Address book integration to navigate to contacts
  • Current weather conditions and forecast
  • Place calls directly from search listing
  • Navigate in both portrait and landscape mode

Garmin StreetPilot sounds and looks like a very useful navigation app for your Windows Phone. The downside to the picture is that there is no trial version available and the full version runs $39.99. It may be well worth the $40 price tag but it would be nice to have a trial version to let Windows Phone users a chance to take StreetPilot out for a test drive.

Garmin StreetPilot can be purchased here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

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It's well known now that Asus has had an odd relationship with Microsoft and Windows Phone 7. The OEM was committed early on to make a Windows Phone and to be one of the first to market, yet they seemed to have pulled out, nearly disappearing form the scene. Forbes has a recent interview Benson Lin, Asus' corporate vice president and the general manager of its mobile devices unit, where details are finally shared as to what happened with Asus, Microsoft and the E600.

In short, Asus was constrained by their Garmin partnership (which eventually soured), limited production ability, little access to the U.S. market and essentially being hesitant on whether or not WP7 would be supported by carriers and more importantly, consumers. So they did get cold feet. The reason why the Asus E600 even exists is because Asus went to production and made 5,000 of them before pulling the plug. Now those phones serve as developer devices by circumstance, but not by design.

Regarding their future, Asus is using Mobile World Congress to evaluate whether or not to jump back onto the Windows Phone bandwagon. That's actually not uncommon as we've heard in back channels that MWC is where next year's deals are all made--where people place their bets on new technology. That's why the Nokia deal is so important as we're hearing carriers are ecstatic over the partnership. That gives WP7 a lot more momentum going forward and while Asus says that match up won't have an effect on their decision, we can't but think that it will.

Source: Forbes

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Garmin-Asus has ventured into the Windows Phone market before with the M20 but it really never got off the ground. Some had hopes that chances for success would improve when Garmin was introduced as a Windows Phone 7 launch partner earlier this year by Microsoft.  It now it appears Garmin will be late to the party.

Digitimes is reporting that Garmin-Asus will not launch a Windows Phone 7 device this year but instead is targeting the first quarter of 2011 to join the Windows Phone 7 lineup. Instead, the company is focusing on a few new Android based smartphones they plan to release by the end of this year.

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The long-awaited Garmin-Asus Nuvifone M20, which we got our hands on way back at the beginning of the year, is finally getting some launch love, but don't expect to see people roaming the streets with it anytime soon in the States. The M20's been launched on Taiwan's Chunghwa network, marking the first phone to run Windows Mobile from the alliance between the GPS guru and hardware manufacturer.

Presser [via Engadget Mobile]

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Garmin Nüvifone G60 delayed

Earlier this year we reported on the Garmin Nüvifone G60, a collaboration between GPS giant Garmin and Taiwanese hardware manufacturer Asus. The G60 was first announced back in January of 2008 and slated for a third-quarter 2008 launch that would eventually be delayed until June of 2009. It now looks as if that delay wasn't the last one for the G60.

Engadget Mobile is reporting that the G60 has been delayed once again with an anticipated release sometime during the third quarter of 2009. The company is citing hardware/software complexities as the reason behind the pushed back release date.

The G60 was first thought to be a Windows Mobile phone but development has since gone the direction of Linux OS.  The Garmin M20 is a Windows Mobile based phone and is still slated for a Summer '09 release.

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Not that we were likely to see it with a widespread U.S. release, but it looks like the Asus P565 — which at one point was calling itself the world's fastest — may have been killed off by Asus' recent teaming with Garmin.

German site GPSandCo (translated) reports that the P565 has been pulled from the French and German markets, likely because of the new partnership.

Sounds like Garmin-Asus is really going to be pushing its Nuvifone line. And why not? We were plenty impressed with the M20 at Mobile World Congress.

Via Unwired View

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We grabbed some hands-on time with the first Windows Mobile phone of the Garmin-Asus alliance, the nuvifone M20. We gotta say, we're darn impressed. The styling is helped out by a multitude of color options, but in essence think "small," "wee," or "cute" — but in a good way.

The little guy has GPS down in its guts in exactly the way you'd expect from Garmin — maps are included in the 4 gigs of onboard storage, GPS location is added to photos, e-mails, texts, basically anything you'd like to add it, too. There's a special Garmin Car Mount that it ships with that will pass-through charge and holds the device in landscape. Better yet: When you get a call when the device is in the mount, it will automatically turn off your GPS direction audio (visual directions say) and go into speakerphone. Park the car and grab the phone to continue the conversation and the phone switches out of speaker automatically. Garmin-Asus also threw on a custom skin, which does the job but doesn't wow.

We're looking at dual-band 3G and tri-band GSM, so we may not see this thing in the states when it comes out "first half of 2009," and that would be a shame. The stats:

  • Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional
  • Dual Band HSPA, Tri-Band GSM
  • WiFi, Bluetooth, Accelerometer
  • GPS (duh)
  • 2.8" 640x480 Touchscreen
  • 3MP camera
  • 4 or 8 GB of internal storage
  • 95.3 x 52.5 12.8 mm
  • 99g (including battery)
  • 528MHz Qualcomm 7200A
  • 920 mAh battery (yes, that is small)

More photos and some of the official press stuff after the break.

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Garmin-Asus announce nüvifone M20

For a short while we were thinking that the Garmin-Asus nüvifone G60 might be the first from the upcoming line to sport Windows Mobile. But now it's going to be the M20, which the new partnership announced today.

Here's what you're getting:

  • Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional.
  • Qualcomm 7200A 528MHz processor.
  • Dual-band 3G (900 and 1200 MHz, tri-band EDGE (900/1800/1900).
  • WiFi b/g
  • Bluetooth 2.0+EDR.
  • Dimensions: 95.3 x 52.5 12.8 mm; weighs 90 grams, including the battery.
  • 2.8-inch 640x480 touchscreen.
  • 3-megapixel camera with autofocus and geotagging.
  • Mini-USB for headphones and syncing.
  • Either 4 or 8 gigs of flash memory.
  • 920 mAh battery.
  • Accelerometer.

And, obviously, all the GPS goodness Garmin can muster. Spec-wise, this isn't bad at all, though we wonder how that battery's gonna hold up. Then there's the lack of U.S. 3G bands. There's plenty more to be had at the Garmin-Asus Web site, and we'll hopefully get a better look at the M20 next week at Mobile World Congress. For now, a few more pics after the break.

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Garmin, the GPS behemoth, and Asus, the Taiwanese hardware manufacturer that has dabbled in Windows Mobile, have teamed up to finally get nüvifones, the uber-location-based iPhone-looking phones, onto the market. And Gizmodo is speculating that Windows Mobile could well be the operating system of choice. The love child would be called the nüvifone G60.

Giz is reporting that the first nüvifone out of the block won't be Android-based (sorry, guys).

Rather, it will be a phone running another "major platform." I am guessing that means Windows Mobile, but there's no telling which version, 6.1, 6.5 or 7.

We may learn a little more this morning when Asus and Garmin address the North American markets, and they've promised that we'll get a good look at the nüvifone at Mobile World Congress in a couple of weeks in Barcelona, Spain. And if this Windows Mobile angle checks out, we'll be there on top of it.

For now, check out the full press release after the break.

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We're listening in on the Garmin Press call about the nüvifone G60 that they'll be co-releasing.  They're pretty pumped about their synergistic strategic alignments (or somesuch corporate-speak), the news is that nüvifone will soon expand into a "broad range of devices." The G60 will be shown off, but more imporantly a new model be fully unveiled at MWC09, and apparently more will come later this year.

It looks like they're trying to stay mum about just what OS they're planning on using long-term.  As we said before the G60 is some custom ROM and the next device isn't likely to be Android.  Given one of these partners is Asus, it's still a good possibility that the announced device at MWC09 will run on Windows Mobile.  Later on, though, all bets are off.  Both members are part of the Open Handset Alliance and it will "be part of the strategy moving forward," so WinMo might not be the long-term solution.

If you're interested in the business aspect, it's a straightforward "contractual alliance with profit sharing" and co-branding.  In other words, no mergers or acquisitions here, they're just working together.  Both companies are free to do whatever they'd like with other gadgets, they're just working together on smartphones.

You can try to hunt down more deets at garminasus.com, but it's  pretty slim pickings.

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