ABI maps out prosperous future for sat-nav

Users' appetite for personal navigation devices (PNDs) is set to increase in the coming years, helping the market to top shipments of 100 million units by 2011, according to ABI Research.

Against the backdrop of the current tug of love between Garmin and TomTom to acquire Tele Atlas, the analyst says that Europe is currently the star of the navigation market.

As the consumer navigation market has seen bumper levels of activity this year, ABI is anticipating that the spotlight will shine on the market for some years to come.

It's also expecting strong growth in developing countries like China and India and is predicting that come 2012, more navigation systems will ship in the Asia-Pacific region than any other.

Under the umbrella of this strong market growth, dedicated PNDs will remain the dominant form factor, according to ABI, who believes these devices will be complemented by systems aimed at pedestrian navigation and new usage cases, in addition to new form factors including portable media players, ultra mobile PCs, internet tablets and mobile web devices.

"Handset-based navigation will be stimulated by convergence trends and technological advances in low-cost GPS-receiver integration, and improved indoor coverage," said ABI Research's principal analyst Dominique Bonte. "Driven by the involvement of cellular carriers, off-board handset-based navigation will grow strongly in North America, reaching a sales volume of 21 million units by 2012. It will be a catalyst for the uptake of location-based services such as search, friend finder and tracking features."

Maggie Holland

Maggie has been a journalist since 1999, starting her career as an editorial assistant on then-weekly magazine Computing, before working her way up to senior reporter level. In 2006, just weeks before ITPro was launched, Maggie joined Dennis Publishing as a reporter. Having worked her way up to editor of ITPro, she was appointed group editor of CloudPro and ITPro in April 2012. She became the editorial director and took responsibility for ChannelPro, in 2016.

Her areas of particular interest, aside from cloud, include management and C-level issues, the business value of technology, green and environmental issues and careers to name but a few.