Wow, talk about a rapid fall from grace. Of course, anyone with any understanding of the current GPS/smartphone landscape could see this coming from a mile away, but those who were duped into laying out $300 for Garmin-Asus' nüvifone G60 back on October 4th
are probably kicking themselves right about now.
Merely weeks after the hybrid GPS/phone landed at AT&T, Amazon now has the same device up for just $99 with a 2-year AT&T contract. That's $200 off a $300 phone
. Again, wow. But the story here seeps deeper than just a huge discount on a brand new phone that the world has been waiting years for. The story goes on to Garmin's own stock price, which dipped significantly during trading hours along with TomTom and a few other companies in the navigation industry.
Google Maps Navigation is bringing the turn-by-turn guidance that TomTom and Garmin have provided for so long to Android phones (and possibly others), but the kicker is that it's being made available for free. That means that pay options are now seen as old and out of touch, and more importantly, unnecessary. Granted, some folks love Garmin's interface, and at just $99, the G60 here is still a solid bargain. But considering just how little (if anything) Garmin is making off of this, we'd be shocked to see it try again with another phone that's not powered by Android.