If it wasn’t obvious before, it’s crystal clear today. The dedicated portable GPS device is dead, with Apple and Google playing pallbearer to Garmin, Magellan and TomTom.
Between last week’s hastily organized Google Maps event, where the search giant showed off a new interface, new features and — most importantly for Android users – offline map downloading, and Apple’s new Maps app announcement at WWDC, a dedicated device for mapping and navigation comes across as superfluous. Or even worse, incredibly low-tech.
Smartphone adoption continues unabated, and with it, built-in, carrier-installed and third-party mapping apps are flourishing.
Apple’s latest move with iOS 6 is a swift blow to portable GPS devices, third-party apps available in the App Store and automaker installed navigation systems – not to mention its tenuous relationship with Google.