gadget / travel / 29/04/2015

TomTom enters action cam market

Earlier today in Amsterdam at the TomTom head office, the company unveiled a new product in the action camera segment – the TomTom Bandit.

TomTom is doing what other tech and mobile manufacturers are doing – capitalising on a generation who love sharing content instantly online. The TomTom Bandit allows users to shoot, edit and share videos almost immediately.

This means you don’t even need to know how to edit to be able to use the action camera. It has a very nifty feature where you ‘shake to edit’. Picture yourself in this scenario – you are going on your first skiing trip and you have a Bandit attached to your helmet. It records video (4K capability) along with a host of features like GPS, accelerometer, gyroscope, motion sensors, Bluetooth (if you want to link a heart rate monitor for your activities) and automatically selects highlights from the video (using the above mentioned data) to create a video for you.

tomtom-bandit

Of course, if you don’t like anything automated and want manual controls, you have that too. The video is transferred to the companion app which then allows you to share it with friends.

The Bandit is meant to cut down hours it takes to edit a video, or weeks that you would sometimes take to get around to doing it. Corrine Vigreux, co-founder of TomTom says the biggest frustration people have with action cameras today is the time and effort that goes into editing. “With the TomTom Bandit, we’ve cut the editing time down from hours to minutes – all it takes is a shake!”

bandit

The Bandit is equipped with a wide angle 16MP camera, 4K video support, waterproof up to 50m deep, built-in media server, has a long lasting battery (3 hours of shooting), USB 3.0 and microSD card slot.

TomTom’s Alain De Taeye tells Wired to the Web that the key feature on the Bandit that will set it apart from other action cameras is the media server on it. “It’s the only action camera with a media server on it which allows users to live stream videos, there’s a whole PC on the camera.”

bandit-demo

The Bandit will cost 429 Euros for the basic version, while the extended one will cost 499 Euros and comes with a remote, additional mounting gear, and even an adaptor for a GoPro! Europe is currently taking pre-orders on the Bandit and more information on South African availability at a later stage.

TomTom also announced its own cloud based serviced called MyDrive, which aims to make navigation seamless across all devices (web, mobile, tablet, PND). The idea is that when you are signed in, you find your destination from your web browser before heading out and when you get to your car, your GPS system knows exactly where you’re headed. I saw a live demo of this and it was instantaneous across web, PND and tablet – favourites added where displayed on all devices linked. It wants to give you the fastest route, taking traffic into consideration. MyDrive will be open to car manufacturers, app developers and service providers.

MyDrive is available immediate on mydrive.tomtom.com through a web browser, and will come soon to iOS and eventually Android. No plans for Windows Phone.

On PNDs it’s coming out on the new TomTom GO 510, 610, 5100 and 6100. Existing PNDs will can get MyDrive via a software update for the GO 40, 50, 60, 500, 600, 5000 and 6000 devices.



Nafisa Akabor
Always online... except when I'm offline.




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