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Navigation System...in a Cell Phone

Boot Camp feature for Friday, December 17, 2004

A navigation system…in your cell phone. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. GPS technology is still an expensive option in many cars. There are less expensive ways to add portable navigation systems. Stand alone units are being sold by Garmin and others. There are add-ons for Palm and Pocket PC devices….and for laptop computers. Now ALK Technologies is out with CoPilot live, Smartphone edition. Company founder and Princeton University professor Alain Kornhauser says turning a small cell phone with Microsoft's SmartPhone operating system in it into a navigation system is a significant step forward…

"Whether the step is as large as the step that we took when we first went to PCs or when we first went to laptops… I think it's bigger than when we first went to the handhelds…especially because of the communications."

The SmartPhone uses a wireless Bluetooth GPS receiver….and the communication capability of the phone can allow the online tracking of the users position…if you enable that….and the ability to receive real time traffic data. That kind of information is online available in a few locations around the country..so far. Kornhauser says the U.S. is lagging behind Europe…

"I mean in Europe, it's getting to be that nobody goes anywhere, at least by car, without having a portable GPS system with them."

CoPilot Live Smartphone edition sells for about 350 dollars. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.