Powering this mapping portal is a vector map streaming technology called MapTP which has been available for some months to NAVTEQ developers but so far went pretty much under the radar to the rest of the LBS community.
MapTP is based on the technology initially developed by Mapsolute, a German GIS company acquired by NAVTEQ for $40 million in November 2007. This technology, instead of downloading map tiles (images) downloads vectors which allow a much faster and smoother interaction with the map.
On the top of the map display NAVTEQ provides the additional services usual to a geospatial platform such as geocoding, reverse geocoding, routing and proximity search.
Changing value chain?
This geospatial platform is competing with the business solutions from Microsoft Virtual Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps and other specialists such as deCarta, Telogis, Webraska or LocationLogic (formerly AutoDesk).
Interestingly, NAVTEQ is not the only map data provider willing to extend its footprint in the LBS value chain through a home-made geospatial platform. TomTom/Tele Atlas have also made public their willingness to offer a turnkey LBS portal –TomTom Route planner being its public showcase.