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CES: Garmin finds new route

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At CES this week, Garmin unveiled a range of new products, including the first nüvi with wireless backup camera, and a heads-up display smartphone app.

Garmin International, a global leader in satellite navigation, this week announced a range of new automotive devices that go beyond simple navigation.

Leading the new range unveiled at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas is the nüvi 2798LMT, the first nüvi with a wireless backup camera.

Garmin also announced the 2014 Essential Series, comprising affordable n√ºvis with 5‚” and 6‚” displays, and Head-up Display Plus (HUD+), a combination of Garmin’s popular head-up display with a new, free companion smartphone app. The new navigation devices are expected to become available in February 2014.

‚”With our new lineup of navigation products, we offer our customers more choices to upgrade their vehicle with premium Garmin navigation,‚” said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of worldwide sales.

The nüvi 2798LMT, which combines a bright 7-inch display with a wireless backup camera, allows drivers to spot vehicles, pedestrians and other obstructions as they back up their vehicles. This gives any consumer the functionality that is currently available as a built-in option only in high-end vehicles.

The wireless backup camera is rugged enough to withstand harsh weather and can be mounted on the rear of the vehicle (professional installation is recommended). If the camera is wired to the reverse lights for power, the navigator can automatically display the live camera feed every time the vehicle is shifted into reverse (and back to navigation mode when shifted into a forward gear.). A button press will toggle between camera and navigation modes if the camera is plugged into constant power.

The nüvi 2798LMT includes Garmin Real Directions, voice activated navigation, free lifetime traffic and maps, as well as Active Lane Guidance with voice prompts. The suggested retail price is $400.

2014 Essential Series: First nüvi Models with 6-Inch Displays

Featuring bright 5- and 6-inch dual-orientation displays, the 2014 Essential Series provides affordable standalone navigation with spoken turn-by-turn directions. The new navigators feature premium functionalities that were previously only available in the Advanced Series. New to the Essential Series are lifetime traffic avoidance on select models, School Zone Warnings, a quick search field, and Up Ahead, a feature that shows a continuous stream of points of interest next to the map view. All Essential devices come preloaded with detailed maps and don’t rely on cellular reception, so users can navigate without worrying about dead zones or cell tower range. The n√ºvi 2014 Essential Series has suggested retail prices ranging from $130 to $210, depending on the model.

HUD+ with New Companion Smartphone App

HUD+ combines Garmin’s portable head-up display with a new, free companion smartphone app. HUD+ projects crisp and bright directions onto a transparent film on the windshield or an attached reflector lens. It receives navigation information from a Bluetooth-connected smartphone running the free Garmin HUD navigation app, available from the App Store, Google Play, or Windows Phone Store. By providing comprehensive road guidance at a glance and right within the driver’s line of sight, HUD+ can help increase safety and reduce driver distraction. HUD+ has a suggested retail price of $180.

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