Satellite Navigation Systems - UK - October 2009
This report looks at the aftermarket for personal navigational devices, otherwise known as sat-navs.
The sector has been one of the prodigious performers of the in-car technology market over the past five years, with rising volume sales and increasing penetration. However, in recent times, manufacturers have faced increased challenges as a result of more intense competition, forcing prices down and making it harder to generate sales value growth, despite rising volumes.
In response to an increasing focus on price, manufacturers have looked to added functionality as a way of encouraging existing users to trade up (such as widescreen, 3D displays) and bringing new users into the fold – for example, moves to integrate voice controls are seen as a way of making the technology more accessible.
Perhaps the greatest challenge manufacturers now face is the GPS-enabled smart phone. Handsets like the iPhone already have convergence down pat, whilst offering many of the leading sat-nav brands’ software (available as a downloadable application). Given that smartphone penetration is expected to increase rapidly, what should the likes of TomTom and Garmin now do?
What impact has the recession had on the market and is there anything manufacturers can do to limit its negative effects?
What are the key distribution channels for sat-navs and how are these changing?
Can the duopoly of TomTom and Garmin be broken by the smaller manufacturers?
What potential does the market have for growth in the short term and longer term?
What factors drive consumer choice and how will these impact on first-time buyers?
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