I have tested a couple of Personal Navigation Devices (PNDs) like the TeleNav Shotgun and Dash units, but I went back to using my mobile phones for GPS navigation. A report from iSuppli Corp. was released today that reports PNDs will continue to lead the navigation market in 2009, but by 2014 usage of GPS-enabled smartphones will exceed PNDs.
I always have my mobile phone with me and it is quite convenient to use the phone as a GPS device. The rise of outstanding mobile software has helped considerably as we see apps like TomTom, Navigon, and TeleNav for the Apple iPhone, CoPilot and TeleNav for Android devices, and more clients for Windows Mobile, WebOS, Symbian, and BlackBerry devices. These apps are full featured with some requiring full data connectivity, some being completely offline solutions, and some having a hybrid where you get the best of both worlds. I have been using navigation on my smartphones for a few years and the applications today are much improved over what we saw in the early days and are very usable for navigation. Google Maps and Bing provide good mapping solutions for free too so just about any phone is able to help owners figure out where they are or where they want to go.
iSuppli believes that in 2011, nearly 100 percent of all smart phones shipped will integrate GPS functionality. They also agree that the applications available on mobile platforms are what is driving this adoption by the end user. In addition to the availability, the price of these applications is much less (for the most part) than even a low cost PND.
What is your favorite GPS navigation program on your phone?