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Vodafone signs digital mapping deal with Tele Atlas

pocketgpsworld.comTele Atlas has announced a deal with Vodafone to provide digital mapping and location based content for the Vodafone userbase throughout the world. The details of the content to be provided is quite clear, but what Vodafone intends to do with it is less clear. The implementation is mentioned only in very vague terms.

This marks a pretty interesting departure for a European carrier, attempting to replicate the business models that have been very successful in the USA. Traditionally the European carriers have concentrated on providing the enabling technologies allowing 3rd parties to provide applications.

It will be interesting to see what Vodafone will be offering, and if the other carriers will follow suit. With the new business models from Apple, Nokia, Android and others the carriers are being marginalised to simply providing the infrastructure to build the overall experience, and with dwindling income and increased competition and regulation of its pricing the carriers need to break out and find new revenue streams. Maybe this is the start of a new era in mobile communications.

The full Tele Atlas press release:

Vodafone Selects Tele Atlas to Power Location-Based Applications

Agreement Makes Enriched Mobile Experience Available to Millions of Vodafone Mobile Customers Worldwide

Gent, Belgium, 20 July, 2009—Tele Atlas, a leading global provider of digital maps and dynamic content for navigation and location-based solutions, and Vodafone Group, the world's leading international mobile telecommunications company, have announced an agreement whereby Vodafone will use Tele Atlas digital maps and location-based content across its global footprint for the company’s location-based services (LBS) and navigation offerings. Through the agreement, Tele Atlas and Vodafone will collaborate to enable powerful LBS, routing and mapping applications for mobile users around the world.

The agreement gives Vodafone access to Tele Atlas’ global digital map content and products, including 24 million points of interest (POIs), 3D Landmarks, 2D City Maps and Digital Elevation Models, which give local search application users maps that more closely reflect their surroundings. Vodafone will also gain access to Tele Atlas Speed Profiles, which provides highly accurate speed data to help navigation application users find the most optimal routes and far more accurately estimate travel times.

Bobby Rao, Director, Internet Services Marketing and New Business Director at Vodafone Group said, “In an increasingly connected world, we are constantly striving to enrich our customers’ lives by enabling them to communicate wherever they are with the tools and services they need. Accurate location content is at the heart of many of these offerings, allowing Vodafone to deliver a powerful, seamless mobile experience around the world, based on up-to-date maps and content.”

“We’re very pleased to partner with Vodafone to bring their customers fresh, accurate maps and innovative location content,” said Bill Henry, CEO, Tele Atlas. “As the leading map provider we’ll focus on delivering the richest experience to Vodafone customers that advances their mobile lifestyle.”
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