TomTom has started 2006 with the news of a takeover: recently they announced that they have bought Applied Generics, a small Scottish company. With this takeover, TomTom intends to improved the quality of it's Traffic service, especially the real-time traffic info part. Applied Generics have developed software which can gather information through the GSM network. This information can eg. be used to provide a clearer picture of the traffic density on the roads on any given moment.
The data that is collected through the GSM network by a product called RoDIN24. Networkprovider Vodafone and IT services company LogicaCMG translate the data into clear maps. It's clear that this is very handy information for TomTom users, because this will enable the GPS units to calculate their traffic-jam-free routes more precise. Implementation of this new software is expected in all of TomTom's personal navigational devices: the GO's, the ONE and the RIDER. To make the system as efficient as possible, TomTom also wants to seal contracts with as many GPS providers in Europe and the USA as possible.
Applied Generics is a small company. It's only got 18 employees and in 2005 it had a turnover of about one million euro (685.000 UKP). So far the company has not been profitable. But the company has more sofware up it's sleeve than only traffic-density-measuring applications. It also ships NERO24 and VISTA24. NERO24 can be used to pinpoint the location of all mobile phone owners of a certain network. VISTA24 can be used by network providers to see which GPS aerials are most intensively used. In other words, it can help GSM network providers to determine the the ideal location of new aerials.
TomTom is very satisfied with the acquisition of Applied Generics. CEO Harold Goddijn states: "The unique patented technology has already proven itself. The high-quality, real-time traffic info is not only gathered from freeways, but also from local roads. With the increase of navigational systems, and the growth of the number of traffic jams, the group is people that have a use for such a product is constantly expanding. We're looking forward to partner up with providers all through Europe and the USA, in order to introduce this new technology on a large scale.