You know your proprietary mobile OS isn’t all that great when we go ahead and say: thank heavens for Windows Mobile. Garmin/ASUS have announced that their M20 “GPS that can make phone calls” will now ship with Windows Mobile 6.5, and “all” current M20 owners are eligible for the free upgrade. Sweet. The two companies claim 6.5 will be available in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, India, Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Czech, Turkey and elsewhere on the M20 by the close of 2009. No love for Western Europe and the US? Oh well. WinMo 6.5 for the M20 is nice and all, but what about all those fellas who purchased a G60? More →
Well boys and girls, it looks like the G60 might not be vaporware here in the US after all. An official announcement finally puts the G60 on AT&T store shelves this coming Sunday for $299.99 on a 2-year contract after a $100 mail-in rebate. That might seem a bit high at first, but considering there’s no subscription fee required for navigation it’s really not a bad deal. After all, it’ll cost you the same amount or more to score an iPhone 3GS with a solid non-subscription nav app. Regardless — the question of the hour is… After all this time, is anyone still interested in this puppy or has that ship already sailed?
While many of you spent last night watching grown men pummel one another into submission, we here at BGR put in some over time so we could get to the bottom of the pricing of some upcoming AT&T smartphones. And just as you would expect, we’ve come through. First off we have two HTC offerings, the Tilt2 (Touch Pro2) and Pure (Touch Diamond2). On contract and after applying $50 MIRs, we’ve heard the Tilt2 will be $299.99 while the Pure will go for $199.99. Off contract, you’re looking at $499.99 and $349.99 respectively. Second, we have the Garmin-ASUS nüvifone G60 which will finally ditch its North American vaporware status when it hits retail shelves with the 2-year price of $299.99 after a $100 MIR. Off contract, the G60 will command $549.99, a princely sum, indeed. Unfortunately we’ve not been able to confirm the AT&T Pure or nüvifone G60 release dates, but we do have a pretty accurate idea on the Tilt 2. Still, we’d expect to see all three of these devices before the end of October based upon the fact that this is when these prices are effective until.
UPDATE: We’ve just been sent a photo of the pricing for the AT&T Pure which shows it actually going for $149.99 with a two-year agreement.
One of our oh so trusty ninjas just hit us up with a fantastic-looking pre-launch list for AT&T. These phones listed are not launched yet but are reportedly coming soon. Just remember that coming soon could mean anywhere from two weeks to three months but they’re in the pipeline and now officially confirmed to hit AT&T. These include:
- BlackBerry 9700 in charcoal
- Garmin Nuvifone G60
- HTC Tilt 2, HTC Tilt 2 without camera
- HTC Pure (believe it’s the HTC Snap)
If we’re missing a couple on the list that you guys notice are unreleased handsets on AT&T, let us know in the comments and we’ll add it in!
It was a simpler time. The economy was the last thing on most people’s minds, Dane Cook was just a weird annoying guy from Waiting, Galvatron ruled over our comments section with an iron fist… And Garmin announced that it would enter the wireless arena with the soon-to-be released nuvifone. A lot has changed since then but one thing has remained constant over this historic 18-month period — no nuvifone. Believe it or not however, that might actually change in the near future. Despite having a bit of trouble spelling nuvifone, TWICE reports that Garmin is “getting very close” to a carrier launch here in the US. Why the massive delays? Garmin president and COO Cliff Pemble:
Originally we thought we’d launch the phone into the open market, but because of the strong interest we had from carriers, we chose to focus on a carrier-centric launch and meeting carrier requirements is a lot of work.
Yeah if Garmin thought working with carriers was easy, the company was definitely in for a rude awakening. The June/July time frame does jibe with what Reuters reported back in April so it’s looking like this little guy may actually see the light of day. We shall see.
[Via GPS Tracklog]
So much for June. During a conference call with analysts last week, Garmin President and COO Cliff Pemble confessed that the nuvifone G60 will be delayed due to technical issues. Stating that creating a smartphone such as the nuvifone G60 is “complicated” and that “bringing one to market that’s built totally from the ground up on a custom Linux platform is not an easy task,” is somewhat of a valid excuse, but we mean c’mon — this handset was announced over 15 months ago and still hasn’t seen the light of day. And you know what that led to? Garmin-ASUS pimping the G60 like it was brand new because of their “strategic alliance”, which so far has amounted to nothing more than vaporware and lots of it. The nuvifone G60 is now slated for a release sometime in 2H09 meaning that Absolutely. No. One. Will. Care.
[Via PMP Today]
It may have taken a year and a half and a second official announcement but it looks like we may finally have word on when the Garmin-ASUS nuvifone is set to hit the streets. Of course we still don’t have any official pricing info or an exact launch date, but a Reuters article from this morning places the nuvifone G60 on store shelves in June. As for which store shelves the G60 will land on, it’s still looking like AT&T is where the smart money is though nothing has been confirmed. The article cites “a source with direct knowledge of the project” in stating that ASUS will issue its first LiMo-powered handset in June. As the M20 runs Windows Mobile it’s a safe bet to presume we’re talking about the G60 here. An AT&T-subsidized, LiMo-fueled, 3G-rocking navigation beast… We want it.
[Via GPS Tracklog]
Garmin and Asus took advantage of Mobile World Congress back in February to announce the second nuvifone-branded handset that will reach market — the nuvifone M20. Despite the fact that the G60 has yet to hit store shelves, Garmin and Asus are seemingly anxious to display the fruits of their joint handset efforts and hey, were not going to complain. The M20 is tiiiiiiiny. Not so tiny that the duo couldn’t stuff a nice bright 2.8-inch VGA (640×480) touchscreen in there, but definitely small compared to other similarly-styled phones. As you would imagine, it’s all about navigation. Garmin uses an exclusive customized version of its GPS navigation software on its handsets — think of it as Garmin Mobile XT but tweaked and fully integrated into the OS. The OS on this little guy by the way, is Windows Mobile 6.1. We found that a bit odd considering Garmin whipped up its own Linux-based OS for the G60 but such is life. Garmin and Asus are actually planning to use a variety of different OSes for their devices, including Android. But we digress.
The way navigation is implemented in the M20 is awesome. Example: the M20 has a presence app that will display a list of all of your buddies. Select a buddy and his or her position will be plotted on a map. Another poke or two and you’re off, navigating to his or her location with Garmin’s great turn by turn nav app. That’s just the tip of the iceberg of course, as Garmin has really gone through and tied its navigation capabilities into the OS wherever appropriate and convenient. If you’re constantly on the go, the M20 is certainly a handset you should be on the lookout for when it drops sometime before Q2 is out. Hit the jump for more images of this little nav powerhouse all dressed up in yellow.
In a move to counteract its steadily declining subscriber base and sinking financial situation, Sprint is seemingly looking to open up its network to more non-traditional mobile devices. Sprint is already host to the Amazon Kindle Whispernet service, which provides wireless delivery of eBooks to the popular eReader and serves to distinguish the Kindle from its competition. The carrier also has an agreement with Ford that will outfit select 2009 truck models with cellular data connectivity. In an attempt to expand beyond the Whispernet and Ford offerings, Sprint is reportedly in talks with companies like Garmin, Eastman Kodak and SanDisk about adding EV-DO and presumably WiMax capability to what are traditionally non-wireless devices. If consumers are not interested in Sprint’s network, it only makes sense that Sprint would try to woo consumer electronics powerhouses into using its wireless network. How many people would jump all over a point and shoot camera or an HD pocket camcorder like the Zi6 that could wirelessly upload photos or videos instantaneously? In this age of instant communication and voyeurism, we would guess a lot! In any event, we like this play by Sprint a lot — big commercial contracts mean big revenue that won’t be jumping ship in droves every time an admin fee changes and the ETF is waived…
This report slides into the rare and never sought after ‘uber-rumor’ category as a result of offering nothing in the way of an explanation or even the slightest bit of logic, but if it turns out to be true we’d be pretty bummed. The Asus P565 was one of the few upcoming Windows Mobile 6.1 smartphones we were actually looking forward to playing with. No it wasn’t the overused form factor, generally humdrum specs or the substandard display that drew us in, it was the Marvell TavorP 800 MHz processor. A processing beast like that would have definitely brought some sexy responsiveness to an otherwise often-boggy OS. Alas, Asus’ deal with Garmin announced earlier this month has reportedly rendered the P565 as collateral damage. What the initial reports don’t mention that actually brings this rumor into the realm of possibility is the fact that this handset was to tout some above-average GPS features. Needless to say, such functionality would tread on the Garmin deal and could certainly have lead to the P565′s demise. Either way, we won’t morn the loss too much if this rumor does pan out — there are plenty of other handsets working their way to market over the coming months to get excited about.
Garmin and ASUS have just announced that they’ve entered into a strategic alliance and have subsequently re-branded the Garmin nuvifone as the nuvifone G60. What’s more is that both companies have promised to deliver several devices in 2009 with another device slated to make a charming pirouette entrance at Mobile World Congress. With the entire nuvifone lineup obviously very navigation oriented, the million dollar question is what OS will the lineup will be running. Apparently a ASUS chairman said at today’s press conference that it has yet to decide which OS to use with the G60 and that “[ASUS has] expertise in WinMo, Linux and Android, but we believe the software is more important than the OS.” While the aforementioned statement seems on the surface to be an example of extravagant exaggeration, we suppose that there is some truth to it as the people who are going to be picking up a G60 aren’t going to be doing so because of whatever OS it ships with. Now if you have a good memory for these kind of things you’ll recall that it wasn’t too long ago that we though the G60 would for sure be shipping with Android based upon statements from Garmin’s Asian Pacific Marketing Director, but then again companies obviously reserve the right to change their minds at any time. Expect to see the G60 out by the end of this quarter – a daunting task considering it’s still OSless…
In a presumably final sneak peek before CES, Garmin has posted a gallery of screenshots of the upcoming Nuvifone interface. Included in the gallery is a look at the home screen, web browser, navigation, email, calendar, camera, geotagging support and more. Hopefully this will whet your appetite for the Nuvifone until we can get a closer look at the handset during CES 2009. Hit the jump for more Nuvifone images than you can bear
Big news today from everyone’s favorite nav company turned mobile handset company turned “will it ever release its phone?!” company. We all know Garmin joined the Open Handset Alliance (OHA) earlier this year but word is now trickling around the web pointing to some pretty lofty aspirations in terms of the timing for the company’s virgin Android offering. From Tony An, Garmin’s Asia Pacific Marketing Director:
Garmin will launch Nuvifone, its first GPS-enabled handset, in the Taiwan market in the second quarter of 2009, An noted. Garmin also plans to launch self-developed Android handsets in the second half of 2009, with production to be outsourced
Wow. Garmin looks to be positioning itself as a potential player in the mobile market – if it can ever manage to push a handset out the door, that is. Asus will almost certainly be responsible for production of Garmin’s Android phone as it is contracted to build the Nuvifone and it joined the OHA on the very same day as Garmin. With both Mio and Garmin looking to branch out into mobiles and Dash ditching its stand-alone units, we have to wonder if dedicated navigation boxes will soon be a thing of the past. Either way, Mio and Garmin are currently in a race to release what will likely be very similar handsets and to the victor may go the spoils. Either way, we’ll be looking forward to more info on Garmin’s first Android offering regardless of when it might actually come to market. 2H 2009? We might be lucky if we see the Nuvifone by then.