TomTom coming to the iPhone

Today at the Apple worldwide developer conference in San Francisco TomTom’s CTO and co-founder, Peter-Frans Pauwels, performed a demonstration of a TomTom turn by turn application for the iPhone 3.0 operating system. This application is expected to be for sale this summer as well as a customized car kit for the iPhone. The car kit integrates a microphone and a speaker for hands-free calls and an improved sound quality. Obviously no price was mentioned at this stage.

With a dedicated car kit the Dutch company will be hitting pure mobile software companies (such as TeleNav, Telmap and Networks In Motion) on the punch line. This accessory will both differentiate its solution - from the forthcoming long tail of navigation software on the App store - and provides additional revenue through its traditional retail partners.

Benoit Simeray
Benoit Simeray
New “TomTom on-board Mobile” team?
This announcement follows last week availability of TomTom Navigator 7 on Windows Mobile (read more here). Both news items indicate that TomTom executives seem to get moving on the mobile front after many hesitations on their strategy in the past.

The Dutch PND manufacturer created last year a Mobile division called TomTom Mobile which was soon dismantled and its managing director, Kurt Lyall (read more here), left the company in April 2009 after only eight months in that position. Despite that, it appears that Benoit Simeray, who was previously in charge of sales in Southern Europe - and briefly of global expansion (our interview here) - is now “Senior Vice President On-Board Mobile at TomTom” clearly indicating that the Dutch company is willing to dedicate at least a senior executive to its Smartphone sales.

Watch the TomTOm advertising video below:

Monday, June 8th 2009

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