NAVIGON to ship PND with photo realistic cities and optional TV

Real City3D
Real City3D
Real City3D
Real City3D
German Personal Navigation device (PND) manufacturer NAVIGON announced yesterday a €449 premium device called NAVIGON 8410 Navigator. A 5-inch display, realistic 3D urban views (called Real City3D) and an optional module for mobile TV are among the top new hardware and software features.

The new display is said to be particularly reactive under the finger: “[it] is extremely touch-sensitive, and reacts far more sensitively to touch than other displays,” explained Jörn Watzke, Vice-President, Product Line Management. NAVIGON has also further improved its voice command system, allowing to call up names from saved contacts or name special destinations.

Real City3D (see picture) will be available for 16 cities in Europe. Further cities are planned for the future said a NAVIGON spokesperson. The provider is Zenrin Data, a well known Japanese map data company.

For an additional €59.95, the NAVIGON 8410 can be equipped with a digital TV module for DVB-T reception, converting the device into a mobile television. In addition, NAVIGON integrated a media player for viewing films and images and listening to music.

This device also includes all the bells and whistles found in the previous premium products such as TMC, Bluetooth, lane assistant, junction views, advanced parking search, etc.

High-end PND market
With this new product NAVIGON is further pushing the boundaries in terms of high-end PND. It further underlines the marketing strategy which tends to position the company as a high end PND brand. As a matter of fact, after recently stopping to sell its PNDs in the United States, the German company is now more than ever lacking the scale to effectively compete in the lower end of the market against TomTom and Garmin.

As European consumers are getting more mature and a second time buyer segment starts to emerge, the product mix getting a bit more balanced towards more advanced functionalities. However, in the short term the current economic situation in Europe is not favorable to that trend and many retailers are therefore limiting the display of high end products on their shelves. This short term situation might reveal dangerous for NAVIGON.

Wednesday, July 15th 2009

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