Garmin announced today that the company's highly anticipated iQue 3600 -- the first personal digital assistant (PDA) with integrated Global Positioning System (GPS) technology -- began shipping this week to leading electronics retailers and traditional Garmin dealers within the United States at a suggested retail price of $589.
"We are thrilled with the early response to our iQue 3600 and we're excited to deliver this full-featured, GPS-enabled organizer," said Gary Kelley, Garmin's director of marketing. "This handheld creates a new utility in the PDA market by integrating organization and navigation into a single device and bringing the benefits of GPS location technology to new and existing PDA users."
"Garmin's iQue 3600 is a great addition to the growing and diverse family of Palm Powered mobile devices," said Charlie Tritschler, vice president of product marketing, PalmSource, Inc. "Its world-class GPS technology combined with handheld functionality demonstrates the flexibility and innovation achieved through the Palm OS platform."
The iQue 3600 is the first PDA to feature a built-in GPS antenna and integrated turn-by-turn navigation software. Using an ARM processor powered by Palm OS 5, the iQue 3600 combines Garmin's proprietary Que technology with the unit's Address Book and Date Book. The integrated result is that users can look up an address or appointment on their iQue 3600 and navigate to it using the mapping function, following turn-by-turn, voice- guided directions to their destination. Their progress is presented digitally on the device's 320x480-pixel, transflective TFT color display.
The iQue 3600 marks the first in a series of planned future products that will combine Garmin's expertise in location technologies with open mobile computing platforms, such as the Palm OS. Early enthusiasm for the iQue 3600 provides an indication of additional opportunity in the PDA market that the company wishes to capture. Based on this market potential, Garmin is shifting its R&D focus from CDMA and follow-on GSM handsets to devote more engineering resources to the development of products based on open mobile computing platforms, including those enabled with Bluetooth technology and other wireless capabilities. Garmin will monitor long-term opportunities in the wireless market and will continue product enhancements in support international consumer sales of the NavTalk GSM as well as opportunities in vertical applications as they arise.
The iQue 3600 earned the prestigious "Best of Innovations" Award in the Mobile Office category of the Innovations 2003 Design & Engineering Showcase competition at this year's International Consumer Electronics Show. The iQue 3600 won acclaim for its form, function, value and marketability.
Garmin International Inc. is a member of the Garmin Ltd. group of companies, which designs and manufactures navigation, communication and information devices - most of which are enabled by GPS technology. Garmin is a leader in the general aviation and consumer GPS markets and its products serve aviation, marine, outdoor recreation, automotive, wireless and OEM applications. Garmin Ltd. is incorporated in the Cayman Islands, and its principal subsidiaries are located in the United States, Taiwan and the United Kingdom.