Chicago - Navigon plans to upgrade its iPhone navigation app in the spring with 3D terrain views, automatic uploading of location and destination updates to Facebook and Twitter, and automatic route customization based in part on past driving habits.
The $89.99 MobileNavigator North America app already features such key portable navigation device (PND) features as spoken street names, lane assist, reality view, and Navigon's Traffic Live feature, which is available as an in-app purchase to receive real-time traffic information gathered from current Navigon iPhone users, commercial fleets, other GPS systems, and ClearChannel's Total Traffic Network service.
The latest upgrades include Panorama View 3-D, which features 3D maps that depict the surrounding landscape with elevations, shadows and geographic images, the company said. The 3D maps, which use height and terrain data from NASA, will reside on the iPhone along with Navigon's map database and routing software.
The 3D feature will be available as an in-app purchase for $9.99. The other two updates will be available at no charge.
One of those two, social-network integration, gives users the option of broadcasting their current location, destination and estimated time of arrival to Twitter and Facebook without interrupting navigation. The feature automatically limits input to 140 characters.
The new customized routing feature, called MyRoutes, displays three routes to a destination, each with distance and estimated time of arrival displayed. One route is based on past driving habits, day of week, and time of travel. The other two recommended routes provide other options.
Unlike cellular carrier-provided navigation services, Navigon's nav app incorporates onboard maps and routing algorithm that reside on the iPhone. That avoids service charges for carrier-provided navigation service, and it enables drivers to continue navigating even if they lose a cellular signal.
PND maker TomTom also offers a navigation app for the iPhone with onboard maps and routing algorithm, and PND maker Garmin offers a PND phone with onboard maps and algorithm through AT&T.