October 31, 2007

TeleNav Mobile Phone Navigation grows 16,666%

Just in case you weren't sure if navigation on mobile phones wasn't growing at a fast pace, check this out; TeleNav has grown 16,666% in teh last 4 years. TeleNav has been named the first place winner in the Technology Fast 50 Program for Silicon Valley, a ranking of the fastest growing technology, media, telecommunications and life sciences companies in the region by Deloitte & Touche USA LLP, one of the nation's leading professional services organizations. Rankings are based on percentage revenue growth over five years from 2002-2006.

TeleNav's President, CEO and Co-Founder HP Jin credits the company's dedication and determination for its 16,666 percent revenue growth from 2002-2006. "Throughout our company's history we continually encountered challenges, both economically and technologically. Despite these obstacles, we always believed in the potential GPS services presented to the wireless industry and continued to push forward. We wouldn't be where we are today without our uncompromising customer focus and positive approach. We are extremely proud of our growth and current position as a market leader."

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 23, 2007

Consumers want Mobile Phone GPS

TeleAtlas announced results of a consumer study that further backs what you may already suspect, Mobile Phone navigation is going to be in high demand. The question though is if people want to pay for it. If you are here at GPSLodge.com, then you are interested in navigation and you probably “get” the benefits of using a navigation system. The study finds that a whole lot of other people do, as 84% of those surveyed thought that a GPS navigation on the phone thought that it was a good idea. Interestingly though among those respondents who already have a navigation system, a majority would not want to use the phone to replace the standalone device.

There appears to be some interest in a fee based model, but also there are indications that an ad supported model would be better for many. So, when Nokia goes and buys a mobile phone ad service, I think they might just be doing the right thing.

More information after the jump…

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 18, 2007

Nokia Business Plan Explained

There’s a topical article in the Boston Globe this morning about Nokia that stitches together a lot of their recent actions into a strategy that is emerging for the mobile handset giant that has them taking a big picture point of view to turn handset insight into a broad-based ad driven media company. The article keys in on a recent acquisition by Nokia of Enpocket, a Boston based firm specializing in mobile phone advertising.

The article quotes Rodger Entner of IAG Research who says, “They want to be more than just a phone purveyor, or an infrastructure purveyor. They want to be involved in the whole value chain. That’s why they bought Enpocket. They want to make this a substantial part of their business, ideally worth billions of dollars.”

This gives insight into why they are seeking to buy NAVTEQ too; with maps and navigation come more dependence on your mobile device, which facilitates Location Based Services (LBS). With the knowledge of who you are, and where you are, and maybe what you are looking for, comes ad opportunity, and that’s where the revenue is.

Detailed in the article are several more acquisitions that Nokia made which when listed together starts to form a solid picture of the broad offering to sell services. There are issues in the US market model that the article goes on to point out. Worth the quick read if you like this stuff.

ReadMore at Boston Globe.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 13, 2007

Garmin Mobile Phone News

More non-news and speculation on the Garmin Mobile Phone coming out yesterday as Investor’s Business Daily mentioned the possibility of Garmin coming out with a Mobile Phone GPS navigator combo unit. The backstory of course is that Noika is making the move into GPS navigation in a bigger way by pulling in NAVTEQ, while Garmin is moving the other way with a mobile phone launch. My hunch is that neither market would be easy to get into in a quality and solid entry.

Garmin Spokeswoman Jessica Myers said, “We announce 70 products a year so there are a lot of concepts and ideas that we look at, however that's not in the immediate plans. I can't say we're never ever going to do it. I mean, we've already done it." And they have – it was called the Garmin NavTalk.

Garmin already got into the mobile handset market in 1999 with their Garmin NavTalk model, and were clearly ahead of their time with a navigator and mobile phone in one. Navigation and Location Based Services have taken huge leaps since then, and I would imagine that the offerings these days would be a lot more marketable.

As an aside, a lot of people were really critical of the Nokia NAVTEQ deal and its effect on Garmin when the news was announced; driving the stock down below $95 from its perch at or around $119. Uncertainty must have worked their way through the system, as Garmin stock closed yesterday at a more solid $113.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 3, 2007

Garmin Mobile XT

Garmin introduced Garmin Mobile XT, an all-in-one software solution that turns select smartphones with internal GPS into high-end Garmin navigators. Garmin has certainly recognized the coming wave of mobile smartphones and plans a place in their future. (I find it interesting to see Nokia coming the other way from phones to stand alone GPS.)

Garmin Mobile XT mobile phone software application seamlessly pairs the phone's built-in GPS with Garmin's software so that customers have the benefits of navigation anywhere in North America or Europe. Garmin Mobile XT offers convenient preloaded maps and includes access to dynamic content like premium real-time traffic alerts and fuel prices, but does not require any monthly fees or subscriptions of any kind. The cost is $99, which compares well to the $10/mo the wireless companies want you to pay.

One interesting feature is the PeerPoints feature that allows you to find friends who also run the Garmin Mobile XT software. This sounds similar to the capabilities of the RINO 530 HCx, (see my review of the RINO 530 HCx) that uses the FRS GMRS radio system to find friends (on a very local basis). I thought it was a great feature, and as long as you trust your friends (of family), it's cool to be hooked together.

More from the Press Release below…

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Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 20, 2007

Need a Zipcar? Get a GPS Phone.

In an nice use of GPS enabled phones, you will be able to arrange your Zipcar through a new mobile phone application that is also GPS aware. You will be able to see what the inventory is at the locations closest to you. The Zipcar mobile application works on the back of a mobile GPS widget developed in partnership with uLocate.

By their own accounting, those Zipcar members are pretty connected. Zipcar cites that 90% of their members use a mobile application on a weekly basis and 5% already have the coolest phone on the planet…. The iPhone.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 18, 2007

iPhone with GPS - Next Gen - Q1 2008

iphonesm.bmpYou may have wanted a GPS in your current iPhone, but couldn't get one, well starting in Q1 2008 a new faster 3G iPhone complete with GPS will be hitting the market, according to TheStreet.com. As Apple continues to sell iPhones at a breakneck pace, they are planning the next generation of phones as we speak. Today in London, Apple is calling a press conference to talk about what most people believe will be the rollout of the current iPhone model there. The absence of a European launch has been a big miss for Apple if the demand develops like it did in the US. The only difference might be that Europe has better and faster coverage so the current EDGE technology might seem like a huge step backwards.

The new iPhone with GPS is reportedly going to include A-GPS, or assisted GPS which uses a combination of signals from the cellular network and satellite signals to help it determine locations. The chip is said to be supplied by Global Locate.

More at TheStreet

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

August 29, 2007

GPhone, the Google Phone - With GPS


If you have been reading the gadget blogs, you've probably heard about the Google Phone, which on the heels of the iPhone is going to change how we look at mobile phones. The new phone apparently is set to appear with GPS capability, and will be targeting ads on the device to help pay for the unit. Ad revenue is everything to Google, and getting more eyeball time is the way it goes. The phone is also about making sure that cheap, pervasive computing is accessible to Google, so that the future of always on mobile computing includes their ads. Anyway, it would no doubt have Google Maps and navigation built in if it had GPS capability.

ReadMore at Engadget

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

August 15, 2007

"AAA" Gets Into Mobile Phone Navigation - AAA Mobile


American Automobile Association, otherwise known as “AAA” is getting into the navigation business in a major way, lending its name to a mobile phone based navigation system that will allow them to continue to leverage their travel content, including their lodging and restaurant ratings as well as Points of Interest information. Earlier this year, they teamed up with Magellan to put AAA content on the Magellan Maestro line of navigators.

With a service backed by AAA, they of course stuck in their own content to help members in ways that other generic content can’t, like the ability to search by merchants who offer discounts for showing your AAA card, AAA approved repair services, and AAA branch offices.

Like most other mobile phone navigation services, it costs $9.95 per month and is available on phones that are GPS enabled.

More at AAA Mobile

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

June 15, 2007

iPhone & Innovation Wars over new Features incl. GPS


So it’s pretty well known that the iPhone will not include a GPS in its first incarnation, the simple unveiling has created a whirlwind of activity in the mobile phone space. Phone makers are working hard to keep up with the new design reality created by the iPhone from the iPhone look alike types to the ones that are pushing the envelope with features that include GPS functionality like the Samsung Upstage or the Nokia N95.

Yesterday the Wall Street Journal had an interesting front page article with insight into the mobile phone market and how the handset makers in the US square off against the wireless providers in a battle for control. This battle appears to be slowing the speed of innovation to consumers as wireless carriers tie innovation to new, higher revenue streams. So, while handset makers want to offer free mapping features, wireless carriers want you to subscribe to monthly navigation subscription packages. The fear is that the wireless carriers become “Dumb Pipes” that are nothing but commoditized bandwidth instead of carriers offering innovation (for a fee). The one wildcard at the party right now is the iPhone. As you might recall, Apple had Cingular/AT&T change how they had their systems configured to offer more and distinctive features.

Today the WSJ (p.B4) reported that over half of mobile phone subscribers in the US are aware of the iPhone (hard to imagine why it's not higher), and 12% have postponed buying their next mobile phone to wait for the iPhone release. Sounds like some pent up demand for innovative features. Let’s hope Steve Jobs is able to leverage the much hyped iPhone into a market boom and further drive innovation in the market.

Scott Martin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

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