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TomTom: iPhone navigation software is real

updated 10:35 am EDT, Fri June 13, 2008

TomTom on iPhone software

TomTom has in fact produced real-time navigation software for the iPhone, according to one of the company's French representatives. Yann Lafargue denies allegations from other sources, which first said that Apple's SDK license forbids real-time navigation, and then that TomTom itself had no internal prototypes. "Since the SDK became available," Lafargue observes, "some of our engineers tried to put Navigator on the iPhone. And the first tests showed that it worked well for the most part."

Regarding the SDK, Lafargue believes that Apple does not have the intention of blocking third-party companies from competing in iPhone navigation. The company "must simply try to protect itself," he says, "in the case a client encounters a problem with his iPhone and a navigation application [and] has the intention of attacking them."

It is still said to be unknown, however, whether TomTom will actually be able to sell its software for the iPhone. "On this point, it's still too early to suggest this," Lafargue comments. "What's sure is that we have a solution for which experiments proved conclusive. Now it's a matter of seeing in which manner we can launch it. We couldn't for example finalize a product only to be blocked from the App Store because Apple decided to make its own program, or to favor one from its partners.

"In general, Apple has to date worked mostly with Americans rather than Europeans, which inspires caution," he says.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Roehlstation

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Don't care who does it

    Someone has to produce it.

  1. skemple

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Sounds Great

    I hope this gets released. I have Tom Tom on my Treo and it has been a lifesaver when I am on the road.

  1. adrianm

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I wonder what the implications of using an iPhone (or indeed any smartphone) with car satnav software running.

    In the UK, it's an offence to use a phone whilst driving.

  1. neondiet

    Joined: Dec 1969


    iPhone installation?

    But how would you get the TomTom software and maps onto the iPhone? I've a TomTom 720T with all the European maps, and that almost fills a 2GB data card. Downloading that much data is possible with a good Broadband link and a lot of time, but not very practical. It would be better to buy a box set, have that install directly into iTunes and then onto the iPhone from there. But AFAIK that isn't an installation method Apple are embracing for consumer software.

    TomTom will need a lot of co-operation from Apple to pull this one off.

  1. mdad

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I'll Buy!

    I have TomTom on my Palm Treo also and it only takes up 1GB for all of USA. Cost is now down to $99 from which includes a BT GPS and holder!

    I am ready to buy TomTom for the iPhone as soon as it would come out and this would be my main reason that I would switch phones.

  1. akulavolk

    Joined: Dec 1969



    That's a loaded comment: "Apple has to date worked mostly with Americans rather than Europeans, which inspires caution."

    In most reviews I've read, and based on playing with a few GPS units of both brands, it seems that Garmin's maps are more up to date in the US. Maybe that's why they have 47% of the market, while TomTom only has 19%.

    Conversely, since TomTom is a Dutch company, I'd expect that their European maps are more polished than Garmin's. And maybe that's why Tom Tom has 38% market share in Europe while Garmin is at 19%.

    So there does seem like there's a reason for people to want to choose their GPS content provider.

    But either way, the comment about Apple sounds like sour grapes to me. Especially when Tom Tom struggles for market share in the US overall...not because of any Apple decisions or products.

    Apple bought Emagic (they made Logic Pro), a German company.

  1. chadpengar

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I like the TomTom software (had it on my palm and on my Nokia symbian phone) but their US maps were always way out of date for the areas I'm in.

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