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Navigation now comes for free on all GPS-enabled Nokia smartphones

Nokia held a press conference this morning and announced a new version of Ovi Maps (available for download at www.nokia.com/maps) and more importantly for us Canadians they said that turn-by-turn navigation will now come for free on all Nokia smartphones:

“Starting this spring, all compatible GPS-enabled Nokia smartphones supporting new Ovi Maps will include global maps, voice-guided car and pedestrian navigation and premium content for free, ready out-of-the-box for the lifetime of the device and the content – meaning consumers no longer need a navigation license because it’s all included in the smartphone.”

So this Spring, possibly in time for the sweet N900 to arrive! Anssi Vanjoki, Executive Vice President, Nokia said “We want to make using your mobile for navigation as familiar as using it to send a text or take a picture. We believe that making the best maps with voice guided navigation available for free will be the catalyst to do this. Why have a mobile phone and a separate car navigation system that works in only one country or region? Put the two together, make it free, make it global and you have something that is truly useful and can help you get around almost any city in the world whether you’re on foot or driving.”

Sounds good to me! Here is the full Canadian press release:

“The world is now free. Today Nokia is making an announcement that will change the future of navigation – from now on navigation will come for free on all Nokia smartphones.

Starting this spring, all compatible GPS-enabled Nokia smartphones supporting new Ovi Maps will include global maps, voice-guided car and pedestrian navigation and premium content for free, ready out-of-the-box for the lifetime of the device and the content – meaning consumers no longer need a navigation license because it’s all included in the smartphone.

Anyone, anywhere can enjoy the best navigation on their Nokia smartphone as it uses unique technology and covers 75 countries in 46 languages. So what makes Ovi Maps better than Google Maps — the advantages are endless!

Navigate from your pocket not just in your car – Ovi Maps includes both car and pedestrian navigation with short-cuts via pedestrian zones to navigate through a park or path. Google Maps currently only offers drive navigation.

Jet setting around the world? No problem – Ovi Maps is available for 180+ countries, navigation in 70+ countries and in 40+ languages. Google Maps is currently only available for the US.

Reduce large phone bills – Ovi Maps comes preloaded in the device meaning an online connection is not needed for routing and navigation. Ovi Maps works even without network connection. With Google Maps users can navigate offline but need a connection when recalculating routes. Ovi Maps uses 55% less data than Google Maps and is 10 times more efficient. For example: a 20 km trip with A-GPS and traffic updates uses 2 Megabytes of data with Google, but only 200 Kilobytes with Ovi Maps

Enjoy premium content – Global 5-day weather forecasts, event information by Wcities, editorial travel content by Lonely Planet and Michelin are all included with Ovi Maps. Google does not offer premium content.

Avoid traffic jams – Ovi Maps includes traffic & safety services in 10+ countries, including Canada. Google does not offer safety service and traffic service is only available for the US.

Parlez-vous français? – Ovi Maps offers voice guidance directions in 38 languages, with text-to-speech functionality in nine languages. Google Maps voice guidance is only available in English.

Share with your Facebook friends – Publishing location and status updates to Facebook and sharing with your friends is easy with Ovi Maps.

With today’s announcement navigating with your Nokia will be as natural for Canadians as sending a text or taking a picture and it’s all free!”

Anyone, anywhere can enjoy the best navigation on their Nokia smartphone as it uses unique technology and covers 75 countries in 46 languages. So what makes Ovi Maps better than Google Maps — the advantages are endless!

Navigate from your pocket not just in your car – Ovi Maps includes both car and pedestrian navigation with short-cuts via pedestrian zones to navigate through a park or path. Google Maps currently only offers drive navigation.

Jet setting around the world? No problem – Ovi Maps is available for 180+ countries, navigation in 70+ countries and in 40+ languages. Google Maps is currently only available for the US.

Reduce large phone bills – Ovi Maps comes preloaded in the device meaning an online connection is not needed for routing and navigation. Ovi Maps works even without network connection. With Google Maps users can navigate offline but need a connection when recalculating routes. Ovi Maps uses 55% less data than Google Maps and is 10 times more efficient. For example: a 20 km trip with A-GPS and traffic updates uses 2 Megabytes of data with Google, but only 200 Kilobytes with Ovi Maps

Enjoy premium content – Global 5-day weather forecasts, event information by Wcities, editorial travel content by Lonely Planet and Michelin are all included with Ovi Maps. Google does not offer premium content.

Avoid traffic jams – Ovi Maps includes traffic & safety services in 10+ countries, including Canada. Google does not offer safety service and traffic service is only available for the US.

Parlez-vous français? – Ovi Maps offers voice guidance directions in 38 languages, with text-to-speech functionality in nine languages. Google Maps voice guidance is only available in English.

Share with your Facebook friends – Publishing location and status updates to Facebook and sharing with your friends is easy with Ovi Maps.

  • Pederson

    Bravo! Excellent response to upcoming (semi-released) Google Navigation. Only a matter of time before Turn by Turn navigation – at least on smartphones – is a common included, free service/feature.

  • Steve

    So if I don’t have a data plan…Can I still use this?

    And if it comes ready right out of the box, does my phone even need to be activated?

  • Joseph Morin

    I wonder how the big 3 are going to block the app on their phones.

  • jordan

    I think when they say it comes ready right out of the box they are talking about new phones purchased in the future will have ovi maps preloaded. If you already have a gps enabled nokia smart phone you have to go to the website and download it. If you don;t have a data plan or access to a wifi connection i wouldn’t recommend downloading anything though, it will cost you quite a bit.

  • Jim R

    Take note Google – not everyone forgets about us folks north of the 49th.

  • Dano

    According to Engadget, the N900 isn’t scheduled to get it anytime soon.

  • Koolaid drinker

    To Steve…. Did you read this at all, did the data comparisons strike you as odd if you don’t need a data plan.
    Does your current phone do anything without a data plan?sometimes I just can’t believe people would ask these questions.

  • Financial Advisor

    Nokia comes through again. Is it supported on the E71?

  • J.Soul

    Ovi Maps comes equipped on the E71 – only the FREE turn-by-turn doesn’t seem to be available! E72…yes, but older E71? Not looking like it.

    I’m finding that Nokia’s lack of a North American presence is VERY apparent, especially when it comes to apps.

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