Homer Simpson comes to the Tom Tom app

The voice of cartoon character Homer Simpson, as performed by actor Dan Castellaneta, is now available as an in-app purchase in Tom Tom's US-based GPS apps for the iPhone. For US$5.99, you too can have Homer say "[Annoyed Grunt]" when you make a wrong turn, or "Woo hoo!" when you reach your destination. Pricey? Maybe so, but considering the apps already cost about $50 (not to mention a subscription charge for other services), you're all-in anyway, right?

This isn't that big a deal -- celebrities (and impersonators) have been doing GPS voices for a while now. But Tom Tom says that this is the first time a celebrity's voice has been released for a GPS system via an in-app purchase. And considering that even Tom Tom admits that smartphones are a huge part of the navigation market, this could make for a big change in the way people download and use add-ons like this. Previously, you had to update the GPS unit's firmware, maybe take it out of your car and sync it up with a computer to get a voice like this working.

But now, you only have to click a button on an iPhone app, and use your Apple account to pick up the voice for a few bucks. That's much easier, and depending on how Homer does here, navigation companies may have a whole new market for these add-ons.