Tokyo — TOYOTA MOTOR CORPORATION (TMC) announced today that it will begin rolling out its new G-BOOK mX telematics service and a G-Book mX-compatible HDD* navigation system with the launch of new vehicles in Japan starting in May.
G-BOOK mX builds on the proven reliability and security of G-BOOK with the addition of Map-on-Demand – the world's first technology for automatically delivering differential map data to car navigation systems – to create a more user-friendly and comprehensive telematics service. The new G-BOOK includes features such as Probe Communication Traffic Information, which uses data from other vehicles equipped with G-BOOK mX to provide drivers with highly precise information on traffic congestion.
This new service is available in two configurations: G-BOOK mX, which comes as standard with the new compatible HDD navigation system and is free, and G-BOOK mX Pro, which is a fee-based service requiring an on-board data communications module (DCM). In addition to the standard services available with G-BOOK mX, G-BOOK mX Pro features additional services, such as a security service and operator service.
Below are some of the new G-BOOK features available with G-BOOK mX.
* hard disc drive
1) Map on Demand
This service delivers updated navigation maps through a network covering expressways and toll roads throughout the country, as well as ordinary roads near the driver's home and in the vicinity of a driver's intended destination. With G-BOOK mX, drivers can download updated map data at the touch of a button by connecting their cell phones to the compatible navigation system. With G-BOOK mX Pro, the on-board DCM performs automatic, constant updates of map data. In the case of expressways and toll roads, updated data is sent out approximately seven days after a new thoroughfare is open to traffic.
In addition, a service will be available that enables users to download updated map data from the Internet onto a CD-ROM, which can then be loaded into the vehicle's navigation system to update it.
Map on Demand can be used for three years from the time a new vehicle is registered; after three years, drivers can continue the service by purchasing the latest map software from a Toyota dealer.
2) Probe Communication Traffic Information
This unique Toyota traffic information service gathers driving data – such as speed and position – from vehicles equipped with G-BOOK mX to provide drivers with alternate routes for avoiding traffic congestion. Because it makes use of the on-board DCM, the information gathering capability of this service is superior to similar systems, which rely solely on cell phones, and efficiently stores information about traffic congestion in real time at the G-BOOK Center. In this way the Probe Communication Traffic Information service supplements Vehicle Information and Communication System (VICS) information with updates on traffic congestion, providing drivers with highly accurate predictions about the current traffic situation and suggestions for the best alternate routes to take.
3) Wireless audio with Bluetooth®
The new compatible navigation systems will be equipped with a Bluetooth® AV profile that allows users to connect wirelessly to cell phones and portable audio devices in order to play music via their car's audio system. Compared to connecting via an FM transmitter, the new system delivers wireless playback with much clearer sound quality, eliminating noise interference and sound distortion.
4) G-SOUND Capsule
G-SOUND Capsule is a music package added to G-SOUND, which was part of G-BOOK ALPHA. In addition to 900 individual songs, 103 capsules of 680 songs will be preinstalled in the new compatible navigation system, and by downloading a required code key users can begin enjoying them straight away. Of the songs included, 147 classical tracks can be accessed for free.
5) New operator service
G-BOOK mX will make it possible to request an operator to provide the optimal route to a destination, using Probe Communication Traffic Information in a function known as G-Route Search. Vehicles with a which are G-BOOK mX Pro system will require no cell phone connection or voice communications contract; customers will be able to connect to the operator from their vehicle at the touch of a button, making it even easier for people to use this popular operator service.
6) HELPNET as standard
With the current G-BOOK ALPHA service, only customers who pay a service fee can use HELPNET, an emergency notification system that contacts police and fire departments in the event of a traffic accident or medical emergency and requests that emergency vehicles be dispatched. However, owners of G-BOOK mX-compatible navigation systems will have free HELPNET access for the first three years following new vehicle registration. From the fourth year on, vehicle owners will be able to continue to use HELPNET by paying a ¥1,050 registration fee once every two years.
7) Stop sign notification service
A new service will be launched (covering Nagoya, Osaka, Yokohama and the 23 wards of Tokyo, as of spring 2007) to alert drivers to the presence of an intersection marked with a stop sign, for those intersections that are considered to be particularly dangerous. Furthermore, new vehicle models launched from this summer will be fitted with a function to warn the driver of an approaching stop sign in the event that the driver seems not to be slowing down appropriately. The warning will be issued based on map information from the navigation system and a precise calculation of the distance between the vehicle's current position and the stop line, which is determined by road-markings detected by an on-board camera.
Together with its launch of the G-BOOK mX telematics service, TMC is also simplifying its five user plans for the current G-BOOK ALPHA to two: a free version of G-BOOK ALPHA and G-BOOK ALPHA Pro, which charges a service fee for DCM connection.
In addition, TMC is planning to take the on-board technology (navigation system, on-board DCM, etc.) developed in conjunction with G-BOOK mX and the reliable and secure service technology developed thus far through the G-BOOK and create a new telematics service tailored to the Chinese market, where demand is expected to be high.
* Bluetooth® is a registered trademark of Bluetooth SIG, Inc., U.S.A.
Note: Products described in this press release are for the Japanese market only.
Table 1. Service Contents and Costs for G-BOOK mX and G-BOOK mX Pro
2. Some vehicle models not compatible
3. Paid option
4. Usage of services marked with an '*' require registration through G-BOOK.com.
Table 2. Changes in G-BOOK ALPHA
*A Japanese cell phone service provider