When Panasonic introduced its Strada in-dash GPS system, I was like, "Where's the portable, dudes?" Well, it's here. The $500 Strada CN-GP50U will have the usual premium features such as Navteq maps of US, Canada, PR and Mexico, an SD slot and Bluetooth for hands-free calling, but it will also have Voice Command for setting destinations without touching the screen. TomTom and Magellan have both promoted this feature, but we have yet to see it really take off. We'll be sure to play around with one when the arrive in December, and let you know how it goes. (Jump only if you want the press release.)
PANASONIC LAUNCHES STRADA PORTABLE NAVIGATION DEVICE First Portable GPS Follows Successful Launch of In-Dash System Earlier This Year
SECAUCUS, NJ (October 30, 2007) - Panasonic today announced the launch of its first portable navigation device (PND) for the U.S. market. The Panasonic Strada CN-GP50U sports a sleek, slim design and boasts a 5-inch touch panel display for vivid viewing and optimum ease of use.
"On the heels of a successful debut of our in-dash navigation system in Spring 2007, we are proud to bring to market our first portable device," said Rob Lopez, national marketing manager for Panasonic's Mobile Electronics Division. "The Strada CN-GP50U PND delivers everything consumers are looking for in a cutting-edge portable device - one of the widest screens on the market, sleek styling for added portability, an SD Memory Card port for swift downloading and a highly friendly user interface. "
"Strada is already a best-seller in Japan," added Lopez. "Based upon its overseas success, we are looking to the U.S. debut of our portable device to further solidify Panasonic's place as a major force in the mobile navigation industry."
The power of Panasonic's technological expertise in the automotive and display categories has brought a wealth of benefits to the Strada PND, including ease of use, high performance, digital networking, voice command and GPS Assist - an electronic compass to compensate when GPS reception is interrupted, as in a tunnel.
The Strada CN-GP50U is the ultimate travel companion, providing quick and easy access to maps and 1.8 million searchable Points of Interest in 51 categories, such as gas stations, airports, hotels, restaurants, hospitals, ATMs and historic landmarks. Its generously large 5-inch (diagonal) touch panel LCD screen is easy to read but compact, slim and easy to carry. It features an easy-to-use Graphic User Interface (GUI) with contrasting icon colors and textures for extra clarity. The pre-loaded NAVTEQ® mapping software provides map data for the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and Mexico, plus detailed maps of 86 U.S. cities. Users can easily upgrade their software using an SD Memory Card or USB port. There's even a voice guidance feature, which can be activated in several languages.
The state-of-the-art display also serves as a handy digital camera photo viewer or slide show viewer. The Picture Viewer function can also be used to customize the opening screen image to a favorite snapshot (jpg or bmp) stored on an SD Memory Card. The display automatically adjusts for day or night viewing.
The Strada CN-GP50U also offers important safety and convenience features, such as Bluetooth* capability for hands-free cell phone conversation. The Voice Command function allows drivers to set a destination verbally while keeping both hands on the wheel. Automatic dialing can be easily achieved by simply downloading one's cell phone address book. When driving a route for the first time, Lane Assist helps avoid last-minute lane changes using voice guidance and by highlighting the correct lane in orange. There's even an icon and warning tone to alert the driver when the speed limit is exceeded. The solid mounting bracket features a sturdy ratchet to assure a secure hold on dashboard or windshield.
The Panasonic Strada CN-GP50U Portable Navigation Device will be available in December 2007 with an SRP of $499.95. For more information on Strada go to: