Concord, Mass. – TomTom’s long-awaited navigation
app for the iPhone went on sale today in the Apple App Store for $99 – about
equal to the sale price of an entry-level personal navigation device (PND).
The app quickly shot to the No. 4 slot in paid navigation apps on
the App Store. It will provide the same interface, turn-by-turn spoken
navigation and routing technology used in TomTom’s PNDs, said the company,
which claims that 30 million of its devices are in use.
The app works with the iPhone 3G and 3G S models and includes
maps of the United States and Canada. It also includes IQ Routes that uses
driving data collected from millions of TomTom users to calculate typical
traffic at any time and day of the week, so it “knows” a certain highway is
more crowded at 5 p.m. on Monday than at 6 a.m. on Sunday. This contrasts with
many PNDs that simply calculate routes and arrival times by the posted speed
limit on a road.
TomTom’s app also comes with 6 million points of interest, and it
integrates with the iPhone to navigate to contacts in the address book or to
search points of interest and call them. Consumers can use the phone’s
multi-touch capability to zoom in and out of a map and tap and swipe through
TomTom said compatibility with the iPod Touch and other iPhone
models is “coming soon.”VP marketing development Tom Murray also said a TomTom car kit, already announced, will become available at some point this summer. The car kit will include its own GPS receiver to improve the quality of GPS reception in urban canyons or heavily forested areas and enable quicker re-routing, he said.
It will also charge the iPhone and provide a mounting kit for the dash or windshield that works in portrait or landscape mode. Other car kit features include a speaker and mic for louder voice directions and for Bluetooth hands free calling. The kit will have a 1/8th-inch jack to plug the PND into a car stereos’ auxiliary input so sound can play through the car speakers.