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Summary:

Location Based Services (LBS) are going to be a big next year – you can tell that from the M&A frenzy (25 deals so far in 2007). Further more, bigger chip companies are starting to take note, and gobbling up their tiny counterparts. Atheros, which is […]

lbsphoto.gifLocation Based Services (LBS) are going to be a big next year – you can tell that from the M&A frenzy (25 deals so far in 2007). Further more, bigger chip companies are starting to take note, and gobbling up their tiny counterparts.

Atheros, which is known for making WiFi chips just snapped up u-Nav Microelectronics for around $54 million. Atheros plans to integrate u-Nav GPS into their Radio-on-Chip for Mobile product line. Broadcom bought Global Locate earlier this year.

Safe to say, expect more LBS magic in your mobile phones next year. In-Stat, a market research firm forecasts that the number of GPS-enabled mobile devices to grow from 180 million units in 2007 to 720 million units in 2011.

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  1. To the list of services, have a look at GPSbuddies. A service in beta from GPS-Buddy (www.gps-buddy.com).

    http://www.gpsbuddies.com

    I think some big telco in Europe has signed up for it already.

  2. Folks – has anyone seen Google’s cell tower triangulation approach? Does this do a “good enough” job – so as to dent the business of the GPS chip manufacturers? How much of a dent?

    Nimish

  3. Nimish – Google’s approach (cell ID) really isn’t accurate past 500m. The technology will be a nice fall back in situations where you can’t get a position via GPS (indoors), but it’s practically useless for navigation:
    http://www.thegpsinsider.com/2007/11/30/google-maps-cell-id-kool-aid/

    It won’t dent profits for GPS chipset manufacturers – it’s really just a bandaid until all handsets have GPS.

  4. 2008: Year Of The Location Based Services? – GigaOM Monday, December 24, 2007

    [...] M&A activity in the sector is on an upswing, and the primary driver being location-based and mapping services on the mobile phones, the latest being NXP Semiconductors’ $85 million buyout of [...]

  5. Are You Ready for Location-Based Advertising? – GigaOM Wednesday, February 6, 2008

    [...] sophisticated, and are coming to market fitted with geopositioning systems. Every single chip maker catering to the mobile market is rushing to add location-based functionality into their chipsets; it’s something I’ve [...]

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