Maps are HERE Weekly Brief—11.19.2012

In this week’s Brief: Nokia, earthmine, Mozilla, Qualcomm, Google, TomTom, Toyota, Audi, NXP Semiconductors, BMW, AT&T and Tendril

Maps, from indoor navigation to 3D features to LBS services and augmented reality, topped the telematics headlines this week. Nokia re-launched its mapping and location services as HERE, a "location cloud" that delivers maps and location experiences across multiple screens and operating systems.

The rebranding includes the release of a maps application for iOS based on HTML5 that will include offline capabilities, voice-guided walk navigation, and public transport directions. To advance the 3D capabilities of HERE, Nokia announced the planned acquisition of earthmine, a reality capture and processing technology expert.

Nokia also introduced LiveSight, an augmented reality 3D mapping service and announced a new partnership with Mozilla to integrate location services into Firefox.

"Establishing a new brand is the right move for Nokia in the map and location business,” says Crawford Del Prete, head of worldwide research at IDC. “Nokia's assets in this space are world class. We believe mapping and location will be increasingly important to developing next-generation devices and services across a wide array of segments."

Qualcomm enhanced the Qualcomm IZat location platform with precise indoor positioning capabilities for mobile phones, tablets and network infrastructure.

The enhanced IZat location platform enables more precise positioning (within 3 to 5 meters) inside buildings to ensure an optimal consumer experience. The solutions provide up to 10 times greater accuracy in both open and closed environments over existing platforms.

Google added Belgium to the list of countries where Indoor Google Maps is now available. Indoor Google Maps provides indoor maps and navigation assistance for an array of public settings, from malls and museums to airports and train stations.

Android users of Google Maps will automatically receive floor plans of more than 60 locations in Belgium, a number Google plans to quickly expand. The service is already available in the UK, Switzerland, Denmark, France, and Sweden.

TomTom introduced a Location Based Services Platform and Developer Portal dubbed “TomTom LBS.” The cloud-based platform provides developers with access to TomTom’s location and navigation services—including map display, routing, traffic and geocoding—to rapidly create location-enabled applications for a variety of commercial and consumer markets.

Example apps that can be created include fleet management, route planning, traffic management and geospatial analysis.

Toyota developed a Pre-collision System that harnesses millimeter-wave radar to detect the risk of a rear-end collision with a preceding vehicle. The system warns the driver via sound and display alerts to prompt braking when such a risk is detected.

When the driver applies the brakes, PCS enables deceleration of up to 60 km/h by greatly increasing the braking force up to twice that of the average force applied by drivers. If the brakes are not applied, automatic deceleration of 15 km/h to approximately 30 km/h is possible. Toyota plans to roll the ADAS feature out starting with soon-to-be-launched models.

At the electronica 2012 conference, Audi and NXP Semiconductors announced a strategic partnership that will focus on automotive electronics innovation.

The partnership aims to speed up the innovation curve and time to market in eight selected automotive electronics segments, ranging from mainstays such as in-vehicle networking and car entertainment to emerging technologies for the connected car, like Car-to-X communications, telematics, Near Field Communications, and high-voltage controls for electrical vehicles.

BMW expanded development of innovative mobility services under the sub-brand “BMW i.” The company announced a new investment in the mobile technology company Embark, a mobile app company dedicated to helping travelers navigate mass transit cities around the world.

BMW has already partnered with MyCityWay, ParkAtMyHouse and Chargepoint to create a model for urban connectivity. BMW i aims to increase the freedom of mobility for individuals whether it be by car, train, bus or on foot.

BMW, in partnership with AT&T and Tendril, also co-sponsored a joint hackathon in New York that focused on application development around the intersection of electric vehicles, mobility services, sustainability and the connected smart home. The event was part of BMW’s i Born Electric Tour, which celebrates the unveiling of the hybrid-electric Concept BMW i8 and the fully-electric Concept BMW i3.

"By teaming with Tendril and AT&T to open our collective technologies to joint third-party development, we're ensuring that BMW i Brand vehicles and other products from BMW will seamlessly integrate to the grid and the home, while opening the doors to imaginative new mobile access and control applications,” says Dr. Dirk Rossberg, head of the BMW Group Technology Office USA.

For exclusive business analysis and insight about map apps, indoor navigation, and LBS, see Industry Insight: Telematics and Apps.

For all the latest telematics trends, visit Content and Apps for Automotive USA 2012 on December 4-5 in San Diego.

Coming up in 2013: Consumer Telematics Show 2013 on January 7 in Las Vegas, V2X for Auto Safety and Mobility Europe 2013 on February 19-20 in Frankfurt, Telematics for Fleet Management Europe 2013 on March 19-20 in Amsterdam, Insurance Telematics Europe 2013 on May 8-9 in London and Telematics India and South Asia 2013 on June 5-7 in India.


For exclusive telematics business analysis and insight, check out TU’s reports on In-Vehicle Smartphone Integration Report, Human Machine Interface Technologies and Smart Vehicle Technology: The Future of Insurance Telematics.

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