Navman intros 'navigation-by-pictures' GPS kit
Hardware gets 'serious' styling
Navman today revamped its dedicated GPS navigation kit, launching three new low-end, mid-range and top-of-the-line models - the latter with a 4in widescreen display, the first in a device of its class, the company claimed - along with an RDS traffic data system and a new look that places some clear blue water between Navman's products and their more gizmo-like rivals.
The new black-clad navigators are the iCN330, iCN530, iCN720 and iCN750. The 700 series models sport the 4in, 480 x 272 display; the latest, second generation SiRFStar III GPS chipset connected to a fold-out antenna; up-to-date Western Europe-wide maps and a hard drive to store them all on on the 750, though the 720 is UK and Ireland only and HDD-less. The two units sport dedicated gas station and car park search buttons, and can sniff out addresses using an eight-digit postcode search.
The 750 also sports a 1.3 megapixel camera ready to take location pictures to feed Navman's NavPix feature - essentially photo icons for favourite locations and POIs. Want to visit the Houses of Parliament but don't know its address? Then select its NavPix image, and the iCN uses the photo's embedded location data to plot a course. Some sample NavPix images are included on the machine, but Navman wants you to visit its website to download more and share your own shots with other users.
The 530 offers the same features as the 720, but with a 3.5in, 320 x 240 display and lacking the fold-out GPS antenna - the receiver is fully internal. Like the 720, it uses a SD/MMC slot for storage. The 330, meanwhile, uses an older generation SiRF XTrac chipset and sports an even smaller display.
Navman also introduced today the Traffic Pack, a bolt on RDS traffic data receiver for the 720, 750 and 530 that bundles a lifetime subscription to Ictis' service, picked up from FM radio transmissions, and fed straight into the route-planner to redirect you automatically.
The iCN750 and iCN 720 go on sale in May for £540 and £399, respectively. The iCN530 will ship next month for £299. The Traffic Pack costs £100. Navman did not provide a price for the iCN330. ®
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