Sony’s new quartet of personal navigation devices

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Who’d know that Sony would actually delve into the world of GPS navigation as well? I thought that the consumer electronics giant were pretty happy with their line up of flat TVs, high definition gaming consoles, Blu-ray players, but a Personal Navigation Device (PND)? Word has it that Sony recently announced four new PNDs under the model numbers NV-U94T, NV-U84, NV-U74T and NV-U44. In addition to helping you get around, these PNDs will include more brand icons, search functionality as well as photo viewing features so that you won’t get too bored while locating where’s the next rest room while you’re on the freeway.

What do you expect from these? I suppose you can always purchase a GPS add-on if you already own a PSP, but if you don’t find gaming to be your primary pursuit, then any of these four PNDs sound like pretty solid purchases. First of all we have the flagship NV-U94T that comes with new features such as a photo viewer, audio and video playback, and stereo Bluetooth technology that makes it a snap to stream audio wirelessly while carrying out hands-free conversations with a compatible cell phone. The Memory Stick slot is there, ready to receive photos always.

The GPS satellites broadcast signals can easily be distorted by tall buildings, very dense foliage, or blocked altogether when underground. When this happens, GPS devices can easily give a false location. Sony developed POSITION plus to address the issue. POSITION plus is a unique, hardware-based solution that consists of an acceleration sensor, a pressure sensor and a gyro sensor that together can calculate the vehicle’s current position based on the last known GPS location. The result is a more consistent and accurate position that helps provide interruption-free guidance under the most difficult of GPS reception conditions. Gesture command comes with all new nav-u devices and lets users jump to commands with one touch on the display. The new gesture command feature for forwarding photos lets users advance to the next picture, music track or video clip with a swipe of the finger from left to right across the screen. Other gesture commands include take me home, zoom in or out and call home.

You will be able to bring home the NV-U94T, NV-U84, NV-U74T and NV-U44 nav-u personal navigation devices from next month onwards for approximately $400, $350, $300 and $250 respectively.

Press Release

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