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June 28, 2012

TomTom Expands Social Mapmaking with Map Share


Roads, according to TomTom (News - Alert), change at least 15 percent each year. With Map Share, TomTom’s social mapmaking tool, users can instantly upload changes and share them with the Map Share community.

TomTom used to make Map Share available to a limited number of devices. Now, the company has opened up its Map Share community so that as many as 60 million units can download daily map changes at no cost.

Map Share users can decide which changes they want to incorporate into their maps. For example, maps can include any and all updates from the community or only updates that have been independently verified by TomTom.

TomTom maps include three layers of navigation technology. The foundation is the TomTom map itself, which is updated and verified every three months. IQ Routes help calculate routes based on the most recent traffic updates and routing changes. Users also receive reliable arrival times at any time of day through IQ Routes.

Map Share allows users to change the maps on their devices and to share the changes with the Map Share community.

According to TomTom, the Map Share community consists of over 21 million drivers. Drivers can upload changes such as new street names, blocked roads, new speed limits, new traffic directions and changed turn restrictions. To get free daily map changes, TomTom users simply sync their TomTom units or mobile devices with the TomTom app to their desktop computers.

TomTom’s app delivers turn-by-turn guidance even while iPhone (News - Alert) users, for instance, are carrying on a phone conversation. Rather than having to watch your map and drive at the same time, the TomTom app functions much like a real GPS device, calling out street names and providing background navigation instructions.

The TomTom app for iOS currently retails for $49.99 in the iTunes store. The app is not yet available for Android. Analysts argue that with the power of Google (News - Alert) Navigation available for no cost, TomTom might not find demand for its costly app in the Android Market.

TomTom is based in the Netherlands and supplies both location and navigation products and services.

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Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli
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