TomTom Launches New “Start” PNDs

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TomTom said it will simplify its portable GPS lineup and slash the number of models it carries by almost half.

CES logo“Today’s customers walk into a store and see 38 SKUs.  What we’re trying to do is simply organize products into 3 categories,” said TomTom Inc. President Tim Roper.

The three new lines will include an entry level line called “Start” for ease of use navigation and the Via mid range line with Bluetooth.  Then GO LIVE! with advanced HD traffic, fast touch screens and apps will constitute the high end.

Eventually, TomTom will offer about 20 models rather than close to 40.

The “Start” series will include 4.3 and 5 inch screens starting  at $119 SRP. It also includes spoken street names, lifetime traffic and intelligent routing based on traffic history (IQ routes).  The Start line also gives you local fuel prices.

The Via line is thinner and sleeker with handsfree calling and new natural speech voice recognition from about $169 to $249.

The two GO LIVE! Models with superior real time traffic feeds include two models that carry over from last year.

PND sales fell faster than expected in 2011, said Roper.  U.S. sales fell to about 9 to 10 million.  In 2009 PND sales were 17 million.  “It was a little bit lower than I planned,” he said, noting that TomTom continues to expand into other navigation markets including OEM.

Source: TomTom

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