Global shipments of personal navigation devices (PNDs) will peak at about 50 million units per year in 2012 and slightly decline thereafter, new research from analyst firm Berg Insight suggests.
PND shipments are projected to peak at about 50 million units per year in 2012 and then decrease thereafter.
Increasing shipments in emerging markets are unlikely to fully make up for the decline in Europe and North America, where higher adoption of handset-based navigation services will become the main navigation solution for occasional users.
Multiple navigation solutions and device types, regardless, are likely to co-exist in the future. Most PNDs and in-car navigation systems provide a better user experience than many handset-based navigation services, Berg Insight said. Moreover, handset navigation services also complement other solutions, especially for use outside the car.
More and more, PND vendors are looking at value-added services enabled by new devices with wireless connectivity to combat slower market growth, increasing competition and commoditisation of entry-level devices.
Berg Insight forecasts that 88pc of PNDs shipped worldwide in 2015 will have integrated cellular connectivity.
“The connected PND segment has had a slow start, but now seems to be on-track as business models have been refined”, said André Malm, senior analyst, Berg Insight.
Growth may follow adaptation
Although connected PNDs are unlikely to account for a significant share of total shipped units next year, rapid growth can be expected once customers adapt to new live services, such as traffic-flow information, speed-camera databases and up-to-date maps.
“In only a few years time, wireless connectivity will be taken for granted also in personal navigation devices”, said Malm.
Photo: The TomTom, a personal navigation device.