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Portable Navigation Still Amont Hottest Gifts

Techstination feature for Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Among the hottest tech gifts again this holiday season….portable navigation systems. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. You see them on the windshields of more and more cars….and those numbers will be rising before the holiday season is over. Portable car navigation systems have become even more affordable….and are adding new features. At Mio Technology, marketing director Eric Larsen says…

"We're seeing growth in the GPS market that far exceeds our expectations. We knew last year that we were expecting this to double in size. Now we're looking at tripling in size, maybe even more. It's unbelievable in the GPS market."

There are some low end navigation systems selling for under a hundred fifty dollars this season. Among Mio's new models are the compact C230…

"This is a very simple U.S. only device. It's got a 3.5 inch screen. And this one at a retail price of 249 will have text to speech. So we think that the feature for price value is very, very high on this product."

The C320 adds a widescreen display and MP3 music playing capability…and costs 50 dollars more. It is being sold exclusively through Radio Shack stores. At the top of the line is the C720t….that incorporates a 2 megapixel digital camera…

"With this camera, you can go outside, get a satellite lock and take photos. It will embed all of the coordinate data into the JPEG. You can actually go through and then navigate back to where the photos were taken."

The device is real time traffic capable as well….through a subscription service….which some competitors are now building into their pricing. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin