January 23, 2009 HTC has announced an updated version of its HTC Touch Cruise smartphone that was released in January 2008. The new model Touch Cruise features a new look and expands on the GPS capabilities of its predecessor with the inclusion of HTC Footprints – geotagging software that not only allows users to geotag photos taken on the unit’s 3.2 MP fixed focus camera, but also lets them take notes and an audio clip related to that image to form a “digital postcard”. In addition to identifying each postcard with its specific GPS co-ordinates, Footprints also auto-names each postcard with its general location or area.

The HTC Touch Cruise also doubles as an in-car navigation system with the user interface transforming into a one-touch interface providing turn-by-turn directions when the device is placed into its accompanying car cradle. The Touch Cruise boasts a 2.8-inch QVGA touch display designed to take advantage of HTC’s TouchFLO interface, which provides fingertip access to phone, contacts, email, messaging, calendar and GPS applications. The unit runs on Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional, includes Bluetooth 2.0 with EDR, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g compatibility and comes with a microSD expansion slot.

The updated HTC Touch Cruise will be available globally in spring 2009 for an unlocked price of USD$500 - $600.

Darren Quick