Cars technologies

Any iPod Touch owners who want to use your devices as GPS navigators (just like iPhone 3G or 3GS owners can), your wishes have just come true.

Dual Electronics announced Friday the availabilityof the its GPS Navigation & Battery Cradle for iPod Touch (model XGPS300). The cradle, which resembles a battery case in size and weight, provides a full-featured and portable GPS navigationsolution for the iPod Touch. It includes:

* A cradle with a built-in GPS receiver, a rechargeable battery to power the GPS or recharge the iPod, an amplified speaker for voice prompts, a microphone, a3.5mm audio out and a Mini-USB port.
*NavAtlas: an navigation application designed to work exclusively with the XGPS300 cradle. NavAtlas features turn-by-turn directions and incorporates thelatest U.S. and Canadian maps from NAVTEQ. The app can be downloaded for free from the App Store.
* An adjustable windshield mount to dock and charge the iPod in a car.
* A 12V Cigarette LighterAdapter and a Mini-USB cable.

According to Dual Electronics, apart from working with the NavAtlas app, the XGPS300 cradle can also provide GPS coordinates for other apps. This means that iPod Touchowners now can enjoy location-based apps that generally require a GPS signal to be useful. Social networking apps are a good example of something that would benefit from this functionality, as are appsthat find restaurants, or geocache.

The XGPS300 cradle requires the iPhone OS version 3.0 or later to work. It’s available now at Apple Stores and online. It costs $300.

1) Active safety systemswill include radar and cameras that watch for danger. “We’ve put airbags just about every place you can.” Says Toyota Product-planning Manager, John Weiner, “Within the next five years the car will usealgorithms to anticipate hazards and intervene or warn the driver.

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