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Sanyo car sat-nav first with full-fledged digital TV tuner

It would be easy to think that we get off on teasing our readers in the West by featuring Japanese products you’ll never get your hands on, but that would be a mistake – we just get a kick out of sharing the latest cutting-edge gadgetry, whatever its provenance.

The latest such object of desire is Sanyo’s newest car GPS unit, the Gorilla NV-HD880FT, which features the world’s first full-range digital terrestrial TV tuner. Like all recent sat-nav installs, the Gorilla comes with a large screen (8 inches) and the ability to play back a range of media, but the TV breakthrough is what really counts.

Drivers handing over the hefty sum of ¥225,750 ($1,900) will benefit from the world’s smallest digi TV decoder to handle both the mobile 1-seg broadcasts popular in Japan and the 12-seg broadcasts designed for domestic televisions there. The new circuit board measures just 5 x 5 cm, whereas the previous generation was a chunky 11 x 12 cm.

While 1-seg is fine, it does offer a lower resolution than the full-fat digital broadcasts, making the Gorilla’s ability to switch automatically between the different versions its strongest selling point. That aside, just remember to keep your eyes on the road.

09:32 AM JMLH • Permalink
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