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GPS Maker Adds Familiar Voice To Boost Sales

This article is more than 10 years old.

Manufacturer TomTom, whose U.S. headquarters is in Concord, is bringing the voice of Homer Simpson to its gadgets.

GPS devices give drivers turn-by-turn directions. But growing competition and the recession have been making it harder for manufacturers to turn a profit. The average sales price of a GPS device is now under $200. It was almost $300 less than two years ago. Enter customization.

"At the end of the road, turn left. Then, take the highway," the burly cartoon figure, Homer Simpson, says with his characteristic laugh and "Woo hoo."

TomTom customers can now download the voice of Homer Simpson to tell how to get where they want to go — and not just to the Kwik-E Mart in Springfield. The voice costs $13, which is a growing source of revenue for TomTom as sales are leveling off for the entire industry.

This program aired on June 17, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.

Curt Nickisch Twitter Business & Technology Reporter
Curt Nickisch was formerly WBUR's business and technology reporter.

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