Looks like Garmin aren't going to take the rise in PND apps for smartphones lying down: an anonymous source has just officially outed specifications for the Garmin nuvi 1690 we've been seeing recently, together with its bigger siblings the nuvi 1820 and 1860. The 1820 and 1860 are the first two models from Garmin's new nuvi 1800-series, with 4.8-inch WVGA touchscreens, WiFi and Bluetooth, and - in the case of the 1860 at least - a 3-megapixel camera with geotagging.
Details of the upcoming Garmin nuvi 1690 connected PND are quietly being outed, courtesy of both the FCC and the Bluetooth SIG (Special Interest Group). The latter have confirmed that the touchscreen satnav will not only have Bluetooth but go on sale in both Europe and North America, while the former have released the 1690's quick-start manual [pdf link].
A new Garmin PND , the nuvi 1690, has passed through the FCC [pdf link], and it seems to have learned some connectivity tricks from its nuvifone cousins. The nuvi 1690 includes not only Bluetooth but GSM/GPRS/EDGE connectivity, presumably offering real-time traffic downloads among other things.
Garmin's successor the cellular-enabled nuvi 1690 PND, the unimaginatively named Garmin nuvi 1695, has been spotted clearing the FCC. Official specifications are unknown, but the nuvi 1695 is expected to have a touchscreen UI, Bluetooth and GSM connectivity; the latter will likely be used for mobile access to Google Local search information.
The arrival of Google Maps Navigation was enough justification for many to declare that standalone PNDs were dead and buried, but according to Berg Insight there's still some way to go before the devices peak. The research firm estimate that dedicated PNDs will peak in 2012, with sales around the 50m units per year mark, after which they'll decline. They also suggest that connected PNDs will have a slightly longer grasp on the market.