Speaking Engagements & Private Workshops - Get Dean Bubley to present or chair your event

Need an experienced, provocative & influential telecoms keynote speaker, moderator/chair or workshop facilitator?
To discuss Dean Bubley's appearance at a specific event, contact information AT disruptive-analysis DOT com

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Nokia & Navteq... location services, or location products?

Let me try and join the dots.

.....Nokia N95 with GPS and 8GB of memory and a memory card slot..... Navteq's giant mapping databases.... Nokia developing its non-carrier channels to market.....

Look at TomTom or Garmin or maybe even Tracker: mobile location is mostly about standalone products. Services are mostly limited to incremental add-ons: updates, or critical realtime traffic info, plus a tiny and sexy but mostly non-revenue slice of geolocation-meets-social-networking mashups. Not only is downloading maps or directions OTA to a handset slow and expensive, it also consumes valuable power.

Bottom line: mapping on mobile doesn't need an operator or very much over-the-air location services. Maybe in the future as upsell, but not as a starting point. The pricing/performance curve on flash memory is much steeper than that for wireless broadband.

Interesting, this is totally different from things like Google Earth. For that, a Web 2.0-type model works fine. Mobility is less important, bandwidth is abundant always-on and essentially free, more granular data is becoming available continually and there are no power constraints.


Ben said...

Yeah, but Dean - have you *tried* an N95 for GPS? It takes forever to get any sort of location: often I've had no success even after ten minutes of waiting. The antenna is in the keypad (!) so you have to hold the thing in your hand... won't work in your pocket.

Frankly, there's no better device for disappointing the average user and setting their expectations of mobile location applications to be VERY low!

Kedar said...

Key thing to remember is the size of installed base.

There is a huge installed base with non-GPS handsets vs tiny base with GPS handsets.

So one does need operators to locate mobile subs with various methods.

One VAS can be location based promotion that advertisers can provide users, provided they have opted-in.