Although manufacturers of dedicated car navigation systems have been hit hard by the surge in popularity of apps that give a smartphone all the navigational bells and whistles like turn-by-turn directions and voice guidance, dedicated systems still have their advantages – most obviously a larger screen size. But even that advantage could now be under fire from tablet computers that boast equal or larger screen sizes, along with wider functionality such as multimedia and Internet browsing capabilities. Recognizing this, car navigation systems company, Rydeen Mobile Electronics has teamed up with Marvell to produce the Rydeen GCOM701 – an Android powered 7-inch tablet that is being marketed as a tablet/GPS navigation device hybrid.

The GCOM701 features built-in Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth, a front-facing camera and an internal microphone and speaker, enabling the use of Internet-based communications services such as Skype. Users can surf the web, read e-books and view photos or videos on the device’s 7-inch, 800 x 480 resolution TFT touch panel then, for navigation duties on the road the unit is preloaded with four million points of interest courtesy of Navteq.

"Consumers today expect their personal mobile connected devices to combine seamless connectivity, broad business functionality, a diverse communications suite and an enthralling multimedia experience in a convenient and elegant form factor," said Weili Dai, Marvell's Co-founder and Vice President and General Manager of the Consumer and Computing Business Unit of Marvell Semiconductor, Inc. "By integrating Marvell's ARMADA application processor technology into Rydeen's new portable navigation device, we are now able to create a compelling navigational experience unmatched in the industry" said Phil Maeda, President of Rydeen.

The GCOM701 will be available from November and will feature two color options, black or white. The price is yet to be announced.

Technical Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 205.04 x 110.92 x13mm
  • CPU/Operating System: Marvell ARMADA 166- 800MHz; Android OS
  • Screen: 7-inch TFT resistive-type touch panel; 800x480 pixel resolution
  • Memory: Internal: 2Gbit DDR2 SDRAM, External: MicroSD (removable) up to 32GB
  • Connectivity: GPS: High-Sensitivity GPS Receiver (NXP GNS7560) Bluetooth: Marvell 8688
  • WiFi: 802.11 b/g (Marvell 8688)
  • Playback Sources: Audio: MIDI, MP3, WMA, AAC, WAV, PCM
  • Video: H.264, H.263, MPEG-4, RM, RMVB, AVI, FIV
  • Photo: JPG, TIFF, PNG Flash: Adobe Flash Lite 4
  • Power: 7.4V 2400mAh Li battery (internal) providing up to six hours of operation at full power mode and up to eight hours under normal usage conditions
  • Ports: Audio: 3.5mm Stereo Headphone Jack
  • Data: USB and Mini USB (2.0)