Sunday, March 18, 2012

TomTom Adds Services to Yet Another Fiat



TomTom is all about the in-dash navigation anymore and has announced yet another car that will feature its Live services. The Fiat 500 will come with the Uconnect 5″ Radio Nav LIVE system which will not be available in the United States. This system will feature yearly map updates and the same sorts of navigation things that you’d expect to see in a portable TomTom unit including live speed cameras, weather alerts and local POI searches. Although personally, I’m not sure why you’d want one.

According to the release, the TomTom Live services will be available to consumer for free for the first 5 years and is “the most comprehensive package to drivers ever launched in a Fiat 500…” Of course, I didn’t see any particular notice as to how much the services would cost after the five years are up, but since most people really only keep their cars for a little over five years nowadays, I suppose that might not be as relevant. The press release also said the new navigational system will also be available in the Fiat 500x and other units which will be sold in various countries across Europe.

It seems like TomTom has its hand thoroughly in the dashboard navigational business and in the last few years has greatly expanded its in-car navigational systems. Currently there are around 13 dashboard navigational systems listed on its site, and I’m certain more will come.

I admit that when I saw this press release, I thought about doing an article about In-Dash navigational systems vs. portable systems but personally I dislike dash nav systems so much I couldn’t really come up with any reasons why anyone would want one. Maybe I’m biased, but paying extra for a unit that is hard to upgrade, costs a ton and is really only good for one thing seems like a bad idea to me and a bad way to spend your money.

But perhaps that’s just me, and maybe I need to look into it a bit more. What do you think? Are in-dash systems even worth the time?? I’d love to hear your thoughts

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