Sunday, March 18, 2012

TomTom Debuts new GO and VIA Devices


TomTom, a Dutch company that has become known more for its mapping and navigational solutions recently, has announced that it will be adding new devices to its popular VIA and GO lines. At last week’s Consumer Electronics Show, the GPS pioneer debuted the GO 520, GO 620, VIA 1425, VIA 1525, and VIA 1625 to consumers. All devices are expected to be available in March 2017.

As  continuation of two of TomTom’s most popular dedicated GPS device lines, all five new products are expected to ship with the latest TomTom maps, and both feature lifetime map updates so that users never have to worry about losing their way with an outdated map. The GO line is designed more for the connected consumer with a lineup of features aimed towards convenience, while the more advanced VIA devices have dedicated searching and navigational functions for the easiest and best routing.

Both the new GO devices and the VIA devices feature intelligent technology which, over time, learns the driver’s habits and can predict destinations. The devices also will become familiar with regularly driven commutes and can provide up-to-date traffic information and alternate routes if there is any trouble on the road.

TomTom GO 520 and 620

The two TomTom GO products, the GO 520 and GO 620, are 5 inches and 6 inches, respectively. Much like the device released in September, the new GO devices feature a new WiFi capability which allows the device to update maps and other data seamlessly. Additionally, these devices can connect with a smartphone in order to use the smartphone personal assistants like Google Now or Siri, allow hands-free calling, and even read text messages aloud. All these features allow drivers to remain connected with loved ones without sacrificing safety or taking their eyes off the road.

TomTom Traffic should be included with these devices, as mentioned above, but the press release doesn’t state anything about features like 3D landmarks or Advanced Lane Guidance, so I assume these features, which are common on other devices in the GO line, will not be available.

Although there are no prices listed for the new GO devices, previous GO devices ranged from $140 – $250 with similar features so it’s probably safe to assume that these devices are in a similar realm.

TomTom VIA 1425, 1525, and 1625

The three VIA devices (the VIA 1425, 1525, and 1625) range from 4 inches to six inches based on the second digit of the device number. Unlike the TomTom GO devices, the VIA seem to be more designed for more serious users looking to get the most out of their drive. There is no information about connectivity, but the devices do offer an enhanced search address bar that helps drivers define destinations from the search menu or by touching the map. The devices also feature Advanced Lane Guidance to help drivers stay in the correct lane during complicated lane interchanges.

Much like the GO devices, the VIA line come with TomTom Traffic and free lifetime maps. Updates must be done the old-fashioned way as these devices do not include Wifi.

There is no information about pricing on these devices, but others in the VIA line debuted at around $200 so it’s probably safe to assume a similar price point for these devices. As mentioned above, both the VIA and GO devices will be available to consumers in March 2017.

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