TomTom Business Solutions becomes TomTom Telematics

Navigation technology player TomTom has changed the name of its Business Solutions unit to TomTom Telematics.

The name change has been made to reflect the strong position the company enjoys in the telematics market thanks to its WEBFLEET product, a software-as-a-service platform designed to help fleet businesses improve vehicle performance, save fuel, support drivers and increase efficiency.

In a statement, TomTom (Amsterdam, Netherlands) said WEBFLEET would henceforth be positioned as its leading product brand for the fleet-management market.

Apps in car dashboards aim to make vehicles smarter

Reuters

Searching for that elusive parking spot or a nearby attraction? Forget about consulting your smartphone, just look at the car dashboard.

Whether it is streaming music and listening to audio books, or even ordering a pizza, apps are being loaded into vehicle dashboards as more cars become connected to the Internet.

Only about 10 percent of vehicles have built-in connectivity today, but the number is expected to rise to more than 90 percent by 2020, according to the British consulting firm Machina Research.

TeliaSonera pilots M2M services with PostNord

Swedish telecoms incumbent TeliaSonera says it will support M2M connectivity in vans operated by mail-delivery company PostNord, with the aim of developing new fleet-management services based on the experience.

The pilot wills see TeliaSonera (Stockholm, Sweden) install its M2M technology in 20 mail-delivery vans in Stockholm, allowing PostNord (Stockholm, Sweden) to benefit from a range of fleet-management services.

Ryder offers mobile maintenance, telematics at new Texas facility

Logistics and supply-chain management player Ryder System says it has opened a new truck maintenance and rental facility in Schertz, Texas that will provide mobile maintenance and telematics services to its customers.

According to the company, the facility will offer a rental fleet equipped with GPS telematics technology, making Ryder the “only company in the market with a facility offering both vehicle rental and mobile maintenance”.

Smart-city deployments to become a key policy area: ABI Research

The deployment of smart-city technologies and intelligent transportation services (ITS) is set to become a key policy area for local governments, according to a new study from ABI Research.

Penetration of ITS technologies in smart cities will range from 20% (in the case of autonomous vehicles) to 98% (traffic management) by 2025, according to the market-research company.

CeBIT 2014: M2M Zone roundup

M2M Zone exhibitors gathered at this week’s CeBIT tradeshow in Hannover, Germany unveiled details of some exciting new products and services, while others provided updates on their strategies for addressing the ever-expanding M2M opportunity. Below we provide summaries of the main announcements.

Vodafone wins major connected-cars deal with Volkswagen

Vodafone has flagged a major new deal to provide connectivity services in European vehicles from Volkswagen and Audi as it continues to grow its presence in the burgeoning connected-cars sector.

The UK-headquartered operator says it will begin equipping Audi models with embedded SIM chips from 2015.

Those chips are to support a range of connectivity services, including in-car navigation, communications and infotainment.

Spireon forms fleet-management alliance with Sprint

Asset-tracking player Spireon has formed a strategic partnership with Sprint that will address opportunities in the fleet-management area.

The companies say they will collaborate on providing the Spireon (Irvine, CA, USA) FleetLocate-branded solution to fleet operators using the Sprint (Overland Park, KS, USA) network.

FleetLocate is designed to help fleet operators improve their productivity and operational efficiency through more effective management of assets.

Daimler CEO says software services key for growth

Reuters

Carmakers will need to ensure their vehicles can connect to mobile devices and the internet if they are to survive, Daimler chief executive Dieter Zetsche said on Monday.

His comments came after Daimler's (Stuttgart, Germany) Mercedes-Benz said it would make cars compatible with new software developed by Apple (Cupertino, CA, USA), known as CarPlay.

Daimler will also be offering compatibility to Android-based devices, the company added.

Worldline, HERE team up on connected cars, infrastructure

M2M player Worldline has joined forces with Nokia’s HERE on the development of a new range of cloud-based M2M services for the connected-vehicle and connected-infrastructure markets.

The two companies are to develop fleet-management services allowing customers to track their operations in real-time, and improve their safety measures, through the use of real-time information and business analytics.

They are also teaming up on new connected-car services, including features that will facilitate parking, ease traffic congestion and improve driver safety.

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