December 14, 2006 Calabash’s new World Explorer, is a hand-held, digital GPS travel guide that is now available for daily rental to St. Thomas USVI visitors. The number of useful gadgets for travellers is burgeoning, and this week yet another arrived at market. The Calabash World Explorer combines the functionality of a hand-held touch screen GPS, audio tour guide, MP3 player, photo viewer, encyclopedia, and a user digital user review form.
The Calabash World Explorer offers a complete island directory of shops, restaurants, beaches, attractions, activities, and includes professional holiday photos and audio tours that enhance every aspect of a traveler’s vacation. GPS maps and directions ensure that visitors always know where they are and where to go.
Users gain unique insight into a destination through access to a comprehensive encyclopedia of cultural and historical information. Self-guided driving, walking, and cultural audio tours are available for tourists to experience while they explore. The guide is also packed with audio ranging from local music to interviews with people who live on the island.
“The Calabash World Explorer represents the fusion of technology and culture. It is a giant leap forward for travelers and it will truly redefine the world of travel,” Joseph K. Croney, founder of Calabash Technologies said. “I have heard many travel industry partners talk about how travelers to the Caribbean see each island as the same. To me, this is a tragedy, as each destination has its own unique people, history, and culture to share. One thing that is central to our vision at Calabash Technologies is to give travelers an inside look into what life is really like everywhere they explore.”
Calabash is most useful in the area of local culture and does not use advertising to compile its listings of places to visit. Instead, it offers a comprehensive directory of vendors and points of interest. The initial offering covers only the Virgin Islands but work is underway to gather comprehensive information on the rest of the Caribbean in preparation for the next phase of launching the Calabash World Explorer globally.
Calabash Technologies, a U.S. Virgin Islands tourism technology company, is based on St. Croix. Croney, who is a former program manager from the Microsoft Corporation, founded the company in 2003. While at Microsoft, he led product teams in the MSN, Mobility, and Developer divisions.