Google Enters Navigation Market

Thursday 29th October 2009 - 13:26

It is now official and will completely change the mobile and PND navigation market. Google announced Google Maps Navigation for Android 2.0 devices.

It comes with 3D views, turn-by-turn voice guidance and automatic rerouting, but unlike most navigation systems, the Navigation was built from the ground up to take advantage of the phone's internet connection, as Google claims.

The features possible because Google Navigation is connected to the internet are:
recent map and business data: phone automatically gets the most up-to-date maps and business listings from Google Maps — there is no need to buy map upgrades or update the device;
search by voice: searching destinations using google voice search (speak your destination instead of typing);
traffic view: live traffic data over the internet (a traffic indicator light in the corner of the screen glows green, yellow or red, depending on the current traffic conditions along the route);
search along route: searching for a specific business along the route (you can also turn on popular layers, such as gas stations, restaurants or parking);
satellite view: the same satellite imagery as Google Maps on the desktop;
Street View: shows the turn as you'll see it, with the route overlaid (Navigation automatically switches to Street View as you approach your destination).

There is also car dock mode available for certain devices - placing a phone in a car dock activates a special mode (new user interface with, e.g. much larger iconography) that makes it easy to use the device at arm's length.

The first phone to have Google Maps Navigation is Motorola’s Droid. It hits the U.S. market next week (Nov. 6th) for $199 on contract (after a $100 mail-in rebate) and will be available from Verizon with voice plan starting at $39 and a web and email plan for $29 per month.

Like other Google Maps features, Navigation is free.

Here is the official Google video

More about: Google , maps , navigation , PND , GPS , android , Motorola , Droid , Verizon
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