Android-based Garminfone Headed for T-Mobile

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T-Mobile USA has just announced that it will be the exclusive provider for the Garminfone, a navigation-oriented smartphone that is going to be Garmin’s first with Google’s Android OS.

It will give users driving, walking and public transportation navigation with voice and onscreen directions and automatic re-routing. Users will be able to locate an address by clicking on it from a text message, email, contact, calendar appointment or web page.

Garminfone with Android OS from T-Mobile USAThe Garmin Experience
The Garminfone aims to go beyond just mapping and navigation. Applications for real-time traffic, weather local events, movie listings and gas prices will be pre-installed, and the device will even remember where the user’s car is parked.

It’s going to be the first to feature Garmin Voice Studio, an Android application that allows customers to record and share custom voice directions from family and friends.

Its 3-megapixel camera with auto-focus is going to automatically geotag images, and the smartphone will offer overlapping positioning technologies: GPS and cell tower location.

The phone will also come with a window and dashboard mount (shown here), allowing users navigate and charge the phone’s battery simultaneously.

But Wait, There’s More
As the Garminfone will run the Android OS, it will come with a suite of communication, entertainment and productivity software. It is going to include Google Search by voice, a YouTube player, support for Microsoft Exchange email, contacts and calendar, software for social networking and instant messaging, and an advanced music player.

Garminfone from T-Mobile USAThe smartphone’s advanced web browser and other Internet-related software will take advantage of T-Mobile’s 3G network as well as Wi-Fi hotspots.

In addition, it will give users access to the Android Market, which has nearly 40,000 apps and ringtones, among other items.

The Garminfone is expected to be available in the U.S. for T-Mobile customers later this spring.

The carrier has not yet announced what it will cost.

A New Direction
Garmin’s original name for the smartphone was the nuvifone A50. It’s the second in the nuvifone line; the first was released by AT&T last year.

That model, the G60, runs a mobile version of Linux developed by Garmin, and will be the only model to use this OS. Going forward, the company will use the Android OS.

Source: T-Mobile USA

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