GDT’s In-Vehicle Navigation System

By Joe Francica

GDT in-vehicle systems During the Location Technology & Business Intelligence Conference last week, Geographic Data Technology, which recently announced that it was being acquired by Tele Atlas, was demonstrating the digital street content it prepared for Denso for the in-vehicle navigation systems that the company manufactures for the Lexus LS sedans.The display featured a touch screen command interface with large buttons for ease of use.Programming the system was fairly straightforward as the GPS sensed the nearest point of origin for the vehicle allowing the driver to merely input the destination.

The best feature of the system was the large, well-lit display that was easily visible to the driver, a feature that can help to avoid excessive neck and eye strain while navigating the vehicle.The street maps were clearly displayed with cartographic quality annotation.Voice commands facilitate navigation and the screen will refresh automatically as the location of the vehicle moves beyond the bounding rectangle of the area on the screen.The Lexus website even touts the fact that this model is Bluetooth enabled so that an alternative way to input a destination is by typing the phone number on your Bluetooth enabled phone and the system will do a lookup on the address.

Editor's Analysis: GDT was most interested in noting that the contract with Denso was a major move into the in-vehicle navigation market, sending notice to NAVTEQ that its dominant market share position had a suitable competitor.Indeed, GDT's entry into this market was a necessary investment given NAVTEQ's years of near total dominance for in-vehicle systems.As in-vehicle systems become more ubiquitous on other makes and models of cars, NAVTEQ and Tele Atlas will need to enhance their product offerings with different content besides simply streets and points of interest.Each company is already making alliances with other content providers for real-time gasoline prices and weather information as well as wireless companies who can deliver these data.

Published Wednesday, May 19th, 2004

Written by Joe Francica

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