Garmin Confirms Android Phones Coming in Late 2009?

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Even though we've been waiting, well, just about forever for Garmin's Nuvifone, a marketing director in Asia has confirmed to DigiTimes that Garmin-labeled Android phones are in the oven. Well, maybe not: UPDATED 12:13PM/1:28PM EST


Update 12:13PM: Eric at Information Week called up Garmin US for their comment, and apparently they were just as surprised as we are at the DigiTimes's report, saying:

Garmin media relations manager, Ted Gartner, said that, "There were many inaccuracies reported by the DigiTimes." He also said that Garmin is working on a statement to debunk most of the "facts" reported by DigiTimes.

Not an outright denial, but we'll stay tuned for the aforementioned statement.

Update 1:28PM: Annnd, here it is:

Garmin Disputes DigiTimes Report

CAYMAN ISLANDS—(BUSINESS WIRE)—Garmin Ltd. (NASDAQ: GRMN), the global leader in satellite navigation, is disputing a Monday, December 22 report in the DigiTimes trade publication entitled, “Garmin expects to ship 18 million GPS PNDs in 2008.” The story contains a number of inaccuracies in both sales figures and product rollout schedules.

“Black Friday sales from our customers were what we expected and gross margins remain relatively strong,” said Kevin Rauckman, Garmin’s CFO and treasurer. “However, the December sales environment is weaker, which we attribute to our retail customers’ desire to exit the year with lower levels of inventory.”

As is customary, Garmin will update investors during its fourth quarter 2008 earnings call, scheduled for February 25, 2009.

Yep, no word at all about the Android phones specifically. The lack of a denial, plus the fact they're in the alliance means there's still a possibility.

Now, your regularly scheduled news pre-update:

You may recall that Garmin was one of the more interesting new members into the Open Handset Alliance, the fraternity of Android-friendly companies that just recently accepted a few new pledges. Whether these phones will have a worldwide release or stick to Asia only, as many of the most recent Android announcements have, remains to be seen. [DigiTimes]



Griffin Ham

Is this Open Alliance Conque-... Er, Partnership going to end up similar to the way EA is 'Partnering' with almost ever game developer ever? Soon enough, every device will have some sort of Android Compatible hardware (Interpret this as you will- Good or bad).

I'd say, though poorly implemented, this may be the foundation for a much larger step forward.