Media Scares Will Not Hold Back Growth of Personal GPS - 21 December 2006
Much has been made in some quarters of the media about the dangers of “big brother” with little effort made to think about the potential benefits that much technology has to offer. Some are simply trying to drum up interest in a subject or technology whilst others are patrolling their personal security with a degree of over-zealousness. This usually stems from the combined effect of a dislike of change and a mis-trust of politicians’ motivation.
This has been seen with the debates over CCTV, RFID and other solutions. A relatively new topic is the development of GPS, particularly its introduction to mobile phones. Much is being made about the ability it provides governments to track personal movements but this ignores the fact that it has been integrated into the cdma chipset for some time now as a result of the E911 mandate was passed.
What these fears ignore is the benefits, be it lower costs, greater efficiency or increased convenience that technologies such as GPS can bring to the table. The ability for mobility and location-based services to aid users is proven in several markets and the efforts of operators to educate and promote these services, such as Verizon Wireless’ VZ Navigator, are being rewarded with a more open minded media and consumer.
Analyst Patrick Connolly explained, “during our investigation of the market we examined the different approaches to [GPS] service launches. Those that received thoughtful, planned campaigns from the operator, highlighting the benefits to customers received a greater level of take-up and seemed to encounter much less media hostility.”
IMS Research found that the benefits to consumers and operators was reflected in the projected level of growth for GPS-enabled handsets with sales of such phones set to nearly quadruple over the next four years.
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About IMS Research
IMS Research is a supplier of market research and consultancy services on a wide range of global electronics markets. The company is supported by headquarters in Wellingborough, UK and offices in Austin, Texas and Shanghai, China. IMS Research regularly publishes highly detailed research on the wireless markets, including a new dedicated report on technology/feature penetration in mobile phones and one on GPS in cellular markets, amongst others. www.imsresearch.com