Published in Mobiles

Smartphones killing standalone navigation devices

Sales plummeting

First they killed MP3 players, then they came after the point-and-shoot camera market and now it seems smartphones are poised to destroy the market for dedicated navigation devices.

Berg Insights now estimates that shipments of navigation devices dipped from 33 million units in 2011 to 28 million last year. The negative trend is set to continue and by 2017 only 17 million standalone navigation devices will be shipped.

Shipments of navigation devices are still growing in some markets, such as Eastern Europe, South America and India. However, as smartphone penetration increases in emerging markets, the positive trend will probably come to an end.

So what’s next for makers of navigation systems? The future is clearly app-centric, but they will have to come up with new features and new monetization schemes to compete with mapping apps from Google, Nokia and Apple.

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