Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Apple, Google Just Killed Portable GPS Devices

Apple, Google Just Killed Portable GPS Devices

Any company expects a product to have certain life cycle; usually this life cycle is determined by the past behavior of competitors and consumers on similar products. One of the major issue in the concept of life cycle, is that companies might identify the wrong competitors and therefore underestimate the pace of innovation. This is what happened with GPS devices popularized by firms such as Garmin, Magellan and TomTom, that underestimated the consequence of products such as Google Map on Androids and Apple Iphones; and this mistake might have cost them their entire business.

"While it’s true that Garmin and other PND manufacturers have years of experience in the navigation space, their marketshare is quickly eroding, with sales down 9 percent two years ago according to market research firm NPD, and figures expected to decline even further in 2012. And the latest smartphones also pose a major problem for automakers.With vehicle development cycles so far removed from the rapid pace of the consumer electronics industry, it’s getting more and more difficult for automakers to compete using their own built-in systems.BMW and Ford have taken to integrating apps like Yelp and Pandora into their factory-installed navigation systems, but there are still some question about the efficacy of such costly vehicle upgrades when a smartphone, purchased on contract at a subsidized rate, can do more than a system costing 10 times as much.

Naturally, Siri integration is a major part of Maps, with natural voice commands (“Take me to Starbucks” or “Navigate to 123 Main Street, San Francisco CA”) available along the route, aping the latest systems from General Motors, Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Ford. And with photo integration, 3-D vector-based graphics, multi-touch control and Apple’s own hyper detailed satellite imagery, it’s hard for any iOS user to justify keeping a chunky piece of perpetually outdated hardware suction-cupped to the windshield."

What are the solutions for GPS devices makers? close their business, try to compete on new features,built their own phones?


Madifing Kaba

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