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Apr 18, 2007

China to Drive Growth in PNDs

Makers of Portable Navigation Devices (PNDs) are increasingly looking to the Chinese market to continue the growth they've enjoyed in Europe and the United States, a recent report stated.

Research and Markets says that European sales of PNDs hit approximately 8 million units in 2006, an increase 0f over 110% over 2005. The Dublin-based, international market research firm placed North American sales for the past year at about 2 million units, an increase of 125%.

However, growth rates like those won't last forever. Since the majority of these units (80%) are used for driving, news that China has now become the world’s second largest automobile market has not gone unnoticed. All of the big electronic navigation map suppliers have operations in the country, lured by the huge potential market.

Currently, there are about 8 or 9 enterprises producing some type of navigation map for the Chinese market. Research and Markets expects that the market will eventually be monopolized by 3-4 enterprises. Smaller firms will obtain the basic data from one of those big companies, reselling more specialized applications for niche markets.

The battle has begun. While the risks are big, the reward could be even bigger.

See also: Fake Maps Leave Chinese On Wrong Road