TomTom brings capacitive screen, multitouch to its GPS devices

TomTom launches new GO, Via and Start GPS units in Australia

The TomTom GO 1000 features a capacitive touch screen display with multitouch capability.

The TomTom GO 1000 features a capacitive touch screen display with multitouch capability.

TomTom has followed the lead its main rival Garmin by offering capacitive touchscreens and multitouch technology on its latest range of high-end portable sat navs.

The TomTom GO 1000 ($379), GO 1050 ($449) and GO 1050 World ($599) all feature capacitive touchscreens, dubbed "Fluid Touch" by the Dutch company. TomTom says the touchscreens require minimal force to activate, and users can pinch the screen to zoom in and out of maps, or swipe a finger across the screen to scroll through the map. The GO 1000 has a 4.3in display, while the GO 1050 a larger 5in screen. The GO 1050 World includes maps of Australia, New Zealand, Europe and North America.

The new TomTom GO GPS range also includes a brand new user interface, voice control and faster route planning and rerouting. The new GO units also include an 'Easy Click' magnetic mount, park assist, advanced lane guidance, IQ routes routing technology and Bluetooth hands-free calling.

"The TomTom GO range is the pinnacle of navigation and we are proud to bring the latest in GPS technology to Australian drivers," said TomTom's Chris Kearney. "The new GO range delivers premium navigation to experienced drivers with a new ultra-responsive Fluid Touch screen and Easy Click magnetic mount."

Garmin was the first manufacturer to market a GPS device with a capacitive touchscreen in Australia, with the launch of the nuvi 3790T in June.

TomTom has also refreshed almost its entire range of portable navigation units, beginning with the entry level Start 10 unit ($179), which now comes standard with lane guidance. It also introduced a new, mid-range brand called Via. These "mid-tier" units lack the capacitive screens of the high-end GO range, but offer TomTom's updated user interface, Bluetooth hands-free calling and voice control, and also feature a new brushed aluminium casing.

The Via 160 has a 4.3in display, while the Via 180 boasts the same feature but has a 5in screen. Pricing for both Via units is yet to be announced.

The new TomTom GPS units will be available in Australia by the end of October.

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