Telit’s Acquisitions to Reshape Global IoT Module Market

In recent times, Telit has acquired cellular IoT businesses from Thales and Mobilogix. The IoT module market has started consolidating and we expect to see a few more deals in the coming months. In August, we also saw Semtech acquiring Sierra Wireless to offer complete chip-to-cloud solutions to cover the entire IoT value chain. The back-to-back acquisitions by Telit show how it is trying to become an integrated player. With the Mobilogix acquisition, Telit can offer modules, connectivity, security and management platform to design and manufacturing services. It means Telit will act as a one-stop solution provider for its customers. Here, we will try to analyze what these acquisitions mean to Telit and how they will impact the IoT industry.

Telit-Thales deal

Thales is merging its cellular IoT module business into Telit to form a new entity called Telit Cinterion. Thales will own a 25% stake in the newly formed entity and offer SIM technology and security services for IoT modules.

China dominates the global cellular IoT module market by taking more than 55% share. International players are struggling to compete in the operator- and government-driven China IoT module market.

After its deal with Telit, Thales will enjoy less distraction from its module business and will be able to focus on its core business which includes software, security and services. Thales will still continue to provide eSIM services where it is a market leader.

Global Cellular IoT Module Shipments Share by Vendor, Q1 2022

Telit and Thales Acquisition Opportunity

The newly formed company will have a common R&D platform which will help save resources. In the coming times, we may see Telit Cinterion focusing on the IoT platform business to earn revenue on a recurring basis.

Thales has a strong position in Europe and Japan, whereas Telit has a good presence in North America and Latin America. This complementary relationship supports their dream of becoming the #1 cellular IoT player in the international market. Telit-Thales is already leading in the international IoT module market in terms of revenue. With this merger, Telit Cinterion may overtake Quectel in the international market in terms of shipments in the coming years.

Telit has already divested its automotive business in 2018, but Thales has a good customer base for some European automakers. How the joint venture treats this automotive business will be keenly watched. There is ample opportunity in the automotive business with growing connected and autonomous mobility. With the introduction of 5G, Telit may focus on the automotive segment as the automotive module business contributes higher revenue due to a higher average selling price (ASP).

IoT Module Launch

In recent times, Telit has done a great job launching many new modules. This helps Telit to target new regions depending on available technologies and provides an option for customers to select a product as per their requirements.

Telit-Mobilogix deal

Telit moved to acquire Mobilogix, a decade-old end-to-end IoT hardware, software and cloud solution provider to fulfill its ambition of becoming a more integrated player and one of the largest end-to-end white-label solution providers outside China.

Mobilogix’s comprehensive device engineering expertise and resources, which focus on optimizing the specifications for EMS and ODMs, and attainment of regulatory approvals and carrier certification, will help Telit provide solutions to customers with reduced cost and complexity, and faster time to market.

Furthermore, Mobilogix is known for its expertise in customized IoT projects, which provide businesses with solutions in various application verticals that are ready to certify and mass produce. This will help Telit expand its focus in growing segments such as telematics, micro-mobility, healthcare, construction and agriculture.

Chinese module vendors are trying to become integrated players to capture maximum share across the IoT value chain. Telit is also trying to adopt such a model with these recent acquisitions. For example, Quectel is trying to increase its footprint in the North American market with the establishment of a new ODM company, named Ikotek. Similarly, Fibocom established a new ODM company in 2019 for global customers through applications such as gateway, payment terminal, telematics and industrial applications. Telit is slowly becoming vertically integrated and trying to revive back its glory days in the IoT module market.

Solutions from the combined entity will provide a great choice for customers who want to diversify and do not want to depend on the Chinese ecosystem, and need tightly integrated solution expertise from one provider.

If Telit wants to compete head-to-head with Chinese module giants like Quectel and Fibocom, it has to develop an effective business strategy for each international market.

Mobilogix has a wide range of portfolios comprising custom IoT projects and solution design services based on three basic architectures, namely beacon, power and battery-operated architecture. Apart from this, it also offers cloud platform integration and custom firmware, which will add value to Telit’s portfolio not only from cellular but also from BLE beacon hardware designs.

Mobilogix has a global presence across key regions such as the US, China, India and Latin America. Its presence in China and emerging markets like India will help Telit grow its presence in these key regions.

Telit’s Acquisitions to Reshape Global IoT Module Market


  • Telit is becoming a more integrated player with these acquisitions and moving up the stack to become an end-to-end solution provider. The convenient and comprehensive solutions will add more value to its customers’ IoT project deployments and will be concurrent with its long-term vision of becoming the #1 international module player in terms of both shipments and revenue.
  • The acquisitions will help Telit provide solutions to customers from the design/manufacturing of hardware to cloud and security with regional diversification. This will help Telit cater to more application segments, thus improving both revenue and profitability.
  • However, industry experts will be keenly watching the entire positioning, offering, strategy and business model, which are changing in the IoT space as you need to be a large-scale and end-to-end player to succeed even though it is a blue ocean out there.

Related post

HERE Directions 2020: Accelerating Digital & Business Transformation with Power of Location

HERE, the world’s leading location platform, concluded its annual summit – HERE Directions 2020 –  recently. The two-day summit, attended by the platform’s ecosystem of developers, partners and customers, gave a deep dive into how mapping and location data are driving innovations, newer experiences, and efficiencies for different applications across verticals.

Growing Traction as Monetization Kicks In

We have followed HERE’s journey from a mapping provider under Nokia to being a spinoff from Nokia to an acquirer of companies (including Medio and Desti) over the years to launching several offerings for building the HERE platform. We highlighted in our CORE (COmpetitive Ranking and Evaluation) framework for the world’s top 25 Location Platforms published earlier this year that HERE excelled in 40+ criteria out of the total 60 for Maps Data, Location Intelligence, Location services, Developer, Partner and Customer ecosystem. This was mainly due to its expanded offering, platform capabilities, ecosystem growth, and performance over the last 18 months.

During the summit, HERE CEO Edzard Overbeek elaborated on the expanded partnerships (like Ford, Inrix, Verizon and Zenrin), customer wins, developer traction (356,000 direct and 3 million+ indirect developers, 80 billion API calls), and the new investors (NTT and Mitsubishi) bringing shareholder diversification and showcasing HERE’s growing scale and mindshare in the industry. To add, HERE is ingesting and processing over 7 billion probe data points daily. Furthermore, HERE has already clocked more than Euro 1 billion of “new business” this year as the monetization has finally kicked in, with the last few years being spent in laying the building blocks for the now powerful HERE Platform.

HERE’s Offerings Go Broad & Deep:

At the summit, HERE showcased its three main offerings for the location ecosystem. The first one provides highly detailed, fresh, and a wider and deeper coverage of HERE mapping content for automakers, enterprises and consumers. The second offering showcased HERE’s growing bouquet of dynamic location content, intelligence and services, like for real-time traffic, HD Live Maps, HERE Hazard Warnings and road signs.

For example:

  • How USPS uses HERE’s real-time traffic solutions to optimize its routes to deliver mail across the US.
  • Fourkites enables global supply chain optimization by using HERE route algorithms for accurate ETAs for truckload shipments and enhanced visibility for its shippers.
  • Tie-up with Verizon to co-create a safety and navigation system, and power future location-centric 5G related applications for both consumers and enterprise.
  • Alam Flora in Malaysia using HERE APIs for geocoding to improve efficiencies in fleet management and redefine waste management.

The third offering showcases HERE’s multi-sided open location data platform, the HERE Platform, where developers can use sophisticated tools – “HERE Studio” in the “HERE Workspace” – to integrate the location data (HERE or a third party) into their apps, build unique location-centric algorithms, visualizations, analytics and solutions, and then exchange, buy or sell the location-based data, solutions or services using the “HERE Marketplace”, all on just one platform. So, the end-to-end platform allows developer to build location-centric applications or services with own, partners’ or HERE’s location data, and then put the application or service into production via the platform itself for internal use or even sell via HERE Marketplace to multiple other potential companies at scale, securely, and with accelerated time-to-market.

For example:

  • Ford uses the HERE Workspace to create, develop and scale location datasets and services for its driving assistance feature.
  • Mastercard data is now available on HERE Marketplace which can be used by retailers to combine it with other data, like on weather (AccuWeather), vehicle traffic volume and parking (INRIX), to plan future store locations.

The business model spans from licensing content and tools to an all-round neutral platform to create, collaborate, exchange and transact location centric-data, solutions or services.

Further, HERE’s location platform and offerings span across multiple verticals and use-cases. However,  key themes at this year’s Directions 2020 were – Supply Chain Optimization, Fleet Management, Urban Mobility, Public Safety and Connected Driving.

New SDKs Built Ground Up for iOS, Android and Flutter

Over the last couple of years, HERE has stepped up its developer evangelism efforts to promote its latest set of tools, big data modeling capabilities, self-serve capable developer portal, marketplace, and very attractive pricing plans via the HERE platform. During the summit, HERE introduced a new family of SDKs for iOS, Android and Flutter (build Android or iOS apps on a single code base) for developers, built ground up to ease the development, and accelerate and scale the deployment of their location-aware apps and services. These SDKs are available in three different editions – Lite, Explore and Navigation – to help build apps targeting basic to the most advanced use-cases integrating multiple HERE maps, navigation,  location intelligence content, services and a variety of developer features. This is a key launch to court more developers for a more comprehensive and open HERE platform away from the likes of Google, Mapbox and TomTom.

Key Takeaways from HERE Directions 2020:

  • HERE leaps ahead of the competition with its newest capabilities unveiled at HERE Directions 2020 across its open, secure HERE Platform to empower developers to “co-create” and “transact” anything which is location-aware.
  • HERE is seeing a good flow of partnerships and monetization kick in for its highly capable HERE Platform which it has been building for the last few years.
  • The monetization on the marketplace will be interesting to watch out.
  • HERE’s Developer strategy will be central to scaling the HERE platform, building further on the ongoing successful efforts.
  • HERE’s key focus verticals this year will be Auto, Transport & Logistics (T&L); Tech, Media and Telco (TMT); and Public Sector & Infrastructure (PSI).
  • In terms of regional focus, HERE is rapidly expanding into Asia Pacific with markets such as Japan, Korea and India as key to its strategy. The new investors – NTT and Mitsubishi along with other partnerships in these regions — should help HERE expand quickly geographically as well across key focus verticals such as TMT and PSI.
  • HERE has already great traction in automotive and enterprise (B2B and B2B2C) segments, and would love to see more offerings in the B2C world, directly touching consumers in the coming months and challenging Google, Apple and TomTom.
  • Great initiatives to build location-centric tools and offerings (like HERE WeGo Deliver) with partners quickly will help companies to adapt and optimize their processes amid the COVID-19 situation.

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Podcast: Leveraging Location Intelligence To Shape IoT and Smart Mobility Experiences

The mapping services have always played a crucial role in delivering area wise geographic information. Over the past two decades, we’ve moved from physical paper maps to digital maps. They are easily accessible at our fingertips. And as we go through this digital transformation, location data is important as a capability that enables different vertical applications. There are several location platforms service providers that offer advanced tools such as offline maps coverage, real-time traffic data, in-app travel planning, POIs, and more.

Counterpoint Research CORE Analysis - Location Platforms Customers & Partners Relationships - Mar 2020

Counterpoint Research recently completed the latest in-depth analysis using its proprietary CORE (COmpetitive Rankings & Evaluation) framework to evaluate the leading 25 maps and location platform players with over 60 capabilities and ecosystem success parameters. The analysis reveals Here as the top global location platform player followed by Google and TomTom.

Counterpoint Research CORE Analysis - Location Platforms Evaluation 2019

In the latest episode of “The Counterpoint Podcast”, host Peter Richardson and VP of Research Neil Shah discuss how location platform players are helping shape the digital transformation. The discussion covers how the companies are moving from being a mapping solution provider to a location intelligence platform provider. We have also touched upon how location intelligence can be helpful in contact tracing in our current battle against COVID-19.

Hit the play button to listen to the podcast

Also available for listening/download on:


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HERE, Google & TomTom Continue to Lead Location Platform Landscape

HERE led the Counterpoint’s CORE evaluation of the location platform capabilities and effectiveness index widening the lead with Google and TomTom. Players such as Mapbox, ESRI, Telenav, Apple, NavInfo & Sygic are rapidly challenging the established platform players with unique and targeted capabilities.

San Diego, Buenos Aires, London, New Delhi, Hong Kong, Beijing, Taipei, Seoul – April 02, 2020

Counterpoint Research has completed its latest in-depth analysis using its proprietary CORE (COmpetitive Rankings & Evaluation) framework evaluating the leading 25 maps and location platform players on more than 60 capabilities and ecosystem success parameters over the last twelve to eighteen months.

As we have highlighted before, the tech industry is undergoing a huge transformation as map & location intelligence providers are moving to a platform-centric approach beyond just selling maps content and navigation solutions for use by automakers and device makers. New experiences are being enabled by combining location-centric intelligence and enterprise/consumer data. The platform approach helps these players to share/license their location data, services along with advanced  development tools and open partnership models with a wide spectrum of developers to help build powerful location-centric applications, services, and solutions. These platforms are becoming highly modular including rich maps data, location intelligence, analytics, development tools, and services leveraging cloud infrastructure licensed together or individually according to the developer’s needs.

Exhibit 1: Open Location Platform Approach A Winning Strategy

Counterpoint Open Location Platform Approach A Winning Strategy

This platform approach is being adopted by some of the key players, allowing them to not only offer advanced location services efficiently in a scalable way, but also to cater to different vertical applications and expand their total addressable market. The following are the rankings and scores for the top 25 location platform players in this study:

Exhibit 2: CORE Scorecard: Global Location Platform Rankings

Counterpoint Research CORE Analysis - Location Platforms Evaluation 2019

Commenting on the findings, Vice President of Research, Neil Shah highlights, “HERE continues to emerge as the world’s leading and most comprehensive location platform in our evaluation. Over the last eighteen months HERE has widened its lead compared to the competition, developing end-to-end capabilities, a broader and deeper portfolio of offerings, a string of partnerships and a large number of customer wins. The open and industry-neutral platform approach, along with advanced tools and effective developer evangelism has helped HERE catalyze the platform adoption as all-round monetization kicks in.

Mr. Shah, further adds, “Google has been more focused on consumer-centric location experiences directly (B2C) or indirectly (B2B2C) which directly aligns with its ad-driven business model. This is where Google, despite having a richer map data and location intelligence thanks to its billions of active Android users, is behind the competition such as HERE, TomTom, ESRI or Telenav when it comes to attracting enterprise (B2B) and automotive customers.

Counterpoint’s Senior Analyst, Prachir Singh, highlighting TomTom’s competitiveness, adds, “After selling its telematics business a year ago, TomTom has been more focused on acquiring marquee customers and attracting developers such as Huawei, Microsoft, and Verizon. TomTom has been focusing on developing extensive capabilities from HD Maps to services for Electric Vehicles to 3D Landmarks and so forth to compete with Google and HERE. TomTom’s partner and customer development has been robust and scores well in our evaluation.”

Mr. Singh, further adds, “Mapbox has done well over the years to climb to the fourth spot in our rankings with attractive offerings and pioneered visualization toolkits to help developers build beautiful maps. Mapbox has done a great job of evangelizing app developers to embrace its location platform to build unique location-centric experiences. It nicely addressed the developer’s pain points and built a platform around its visualization tools. We are seeing other players also beginning to offer similar tools for 2D/3D visualization to build attractive layered maps and digital twins, but with richer map data, thus competing for this segment head-on with Mapbox.”

The need for high levels of capital investment has shaped the competitive landscape, we see very few global-scale leaders as they have to keep their maps and location data fresh which is a herculean task. There is a long tail of regional champions such as Zenrin in Japan, NAVER & Kakao in S.Korea, MapMyIndia in India, Yandex in Russia, NAVINFO, Autonavi (AMaps) and Baidu in China and Navitel in Eastern Europe. Then, we have emerging leaders that are looking to offer maps and location platforms at global-scale but licensing maps from the leaders such as HERE, TomTom or using OpenStreetMaps (OSM), these include Apple, Microsoft (Bing & Azure Maps), Sygic, TELENAV and ESRI.

Commenting on the key regional location platform providers, Senior Analyst Ethan Qi adds, “Chinese mapping giants such as NAVINFO, Autonavi (AMaps owned by Alibaba) and Baidu have been dominating in the China market. These players also have a significant breadth of customers and partners, from automotive, to enterprises, to consumer-facing devices and applications, helping them build robust location intelligence platforms. They have also struck important partnerships with global location platform players such as HERE, TomTom, Telenav, Zenrin, Mapbox, and others to help their customers scale globally.

Mr. Qi, further adds, Apple Maps has hundreds of millions of users and we look forward to Apple further improving its maps to the level of its competition. Apple Maps has been working hard to become self-reliant and build maps in-house rather than just depend on sources such as TomTom or OSM. It has done well starting with its North America maps, though keeping it fresh and dynamic requires more of a horizontal partnership approach than vertical. Emerging leaders such as Telenav have strengthened their position in mobility space with a healthy roster of customers in automotive and shared mobility space especially in North America for their platform offerings from OpenTerra tech, connected car and in-vehicle commerce.”

Some key findings from the research:

  • HERE leads in more than 40 capabilities out of the total 60+ criteria, including Indoor Maps, HD Maps, Geo-Coding, Traffic, Tracking & Positioning, Openness, Marketplace, etc
  • Google leads in data geographic depth, reach, POIs, 3D content and so forth.
  • TomTom leads in offline maps coverage, EV service, while Mapbox leads in Visualization tools, Telenav in connected car infotainment experiences, Sygic leads in-app travel planning, driver safety Augmented Reality experiences integration, etc.
  • ESRI is the third-ranked player when it comes to overall parameters through building a robust developer ecosystem in the location platform space.

Many more insights, evaluation, and analysis on the key platform players’ product offerings, business model, key focus areas, capabilities, major development partnerships, customer wins, and other parameters are captured in this report and available for download here.

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HERE "Mobility Marketplace" Platform – Unique, Disruptive & Will Help Build the "Mobility Graph"

CES 2018 has transformed from a show focusing on “consumer electronics products” to “intelligent consumer mobility” solutions powering next generation connected experiences for personal communication to home to transportation. (see here, here here and here).

The “mobility” piece of the all new connected world has been developing into a very interesting, lucrative segment for the entire tech industry. This segment is already a trillions of dollars in opportunity to power end-to-end personal or shared mobility experiences via different modes of transportation, software, connectivity, advertising or services. The location is the glue which drives these experiences and whcih we have been analyzing via our in-depth “location ecosystems” research (see here, here and here).

Players such as HERE, Google, TomTom, Mapbox and others are driving these ecosystems from location perspective. However, as we have highlighted before, a horizontal open platform model like HERE’s OLP initiative is key to drive the “mobility ecosystem” forward powering newer end-to-end friction-less connected experiences. In light of this, HERE at CES 2018 announced its latest horizontal platform play “HERE Mobility Marketplace” and related services on top of this to enable a global-scale open and neutral platform play to connect the demand and supply-side players and offer a seamless end-to-end mobility planning and realization experiences for both sides. This comes from an entirely new business unit at HERE – “HERE Mobility” alongside HERE IoT and HERE Automotive.

Below are a few thoughts on how disruptive this announcement is and how it can potentially end the siloed, closed mobility experiences and monopoly practices for demand-side & supply-side.

Source: Counterpoint

Potential for Ecosystem

  • HERE Mobility Marketplace from the newest HERE’s Mobility division is a natural extension to HERE’s Location Platform-as-a-Service cloud offering.
  • Majority of the “mobility” experiences today are quite siloed, fragmented and thus broken in this very app-centric world.
  • HERE Mobility Marketplace in our view is a very powerful and unique open platform mobility approach to connect the supply and demand with mobility services which enable seamless end-to-end customer experience
  • This is a huge gap that had been not filled in the ever growing ‘mobility ecosystem’ thanks to urbanization, technological developments and connected everything
  • This Marketplace model has significant potential to encourage involvement of different players to offer their services which can be woven together into a unified experience for end customer to traverse from point A to B
  • The Marketplace thus creates multitude of opportunities and options for all the stakeholders in generating as well as spreading the value.
  • The marketplace model services which could be directly integrated across websites or apps via cloud driven APIs eliminates the barriers to cater to new untapped demand thus unlocking newer opportunities which were earlier not accessible in the traditional fragmented ecosystem
  • The upside is more players can participate in the demand-supply game with their offerings, services making the ecosystem more competitive and healthy, a great win for both sides

Potential for HERE

  • HERE Mobility Marketplace was one of the missing pieces in HERE’s offerings to help it scale into powering end-to-end mobility experiences
  • HERE WeGo app was the first step towards this but by all means was a siloed experience trying to fit in traditional ecosystem not completely capable to offer seamless mobility experience
  • With marketplace model and attached services offering, HERE can extend its reach further and weave the different end customer or consumer mobility experiences together allowing to capture maximum value
  • Above all, more the HERE Mobility services can help plan and power the end-to-end customer “mobility journey”, it will help HERE form its “Mobility Graph” similar to Google’s Knowledge Graph or Facebook’s Social Graph or Amazon’s Commerce Graph.
  • This “Mobility Graph” could be one of the most valuable asset for HERE to drive its OLP (see here) to next level unlocking new services, experiences and consistently attracting new partners
  • If executed well and successful, Marketplace APIs can transform Web 2.0 into “Mobility Web 2.0” as location is that glue which can drive unique contextual value for all the stakeholders in the mobility space
  • The Marketplace can finally drive monetization opportunities for HERE via different monetization models from # of API calls, revenue share, premium predictive analytics service which can optimize mobility itinerary to save $$ in costs and more.

Source: HERE

Becoming a Friction-less, Neutral Platform which can also Monetize

Heavy Investments vs Frictionless Integration Model:

Ideally significant investments would normally require for outreach mostly demand side to cut through the noise and build “Uber” like mindshare as the super mobility platform . HERE’s strategy for this is to leverage the “mobility marketplace connection” via a easy to plug-inself-service” model removing friction and time/cost to integration into the platform with quick visibility on the value shared and generated

  • For the suppliers – HERE has designed the platform to make a very easy on-board process to set the configuration.
  • For the demanders – HERE is looking to provide generic demand kits to connect – Like our Self-service Kiosk (Touch screens in outlets, hospitals, smart cities etc.)

Industry Neutral Platform Play

Attracting both demand and supply side while is challenging and a double-sided platform will have an onus to maintain a “neutral” stand with no preferential or political bias keeping the marketplace fairly open. Considering HERE has uniquely positioned itself as a neutral open and horizontal platform player with OLP initiative as an example, so it should be natural and beneficial for HERE to maintain that positioning and drive the platform forward

Sponsored Suppliers, Regulation & Art of Monetization

Becoming a marketplace, there will be opportunities for HERE to monetize with “Sponsored Suppliers” like on Amazon Marketplace though transparency with suppliers and fair algorithmic rankings will be important to maintain the neutral, open and transparent stand by HERE and possibly use subtly and not be the only major monetization model. However, this could be a great opportunity for smaller suppliers for example competing with likes of uber or lyft to gain visibility within the marketplace. Further, while platform is open and HERE sees itself actually as a competition enabler forming this marketplace platform connecting the unconnected, HERE will have to have tighter policies to ensure the platform is free from any unfair pricing or monopolistic practices or meeting the QoS (Quality of Service) via Supplier as well as Demand side Ratings model.


In summary, this marketplace model which have been tried by many in different industries but only few succeed, however, in location or mobility ecosystem, HERE has unique advantages to lead and drive this initiative due to its neutral positioning of its solutions, leadership position in this space, early market lead or first mover’s advantage, expanding customer rolodex, growing investor base and above all the breadth and depth content and technology to power this platform.

At this point, it looks difficult any of its competitors are taking a similar disruptive approach from Google (heavy inertia in Android and advertising – seen as a less neutral partner), Apple (very vertical not interested in horizontal play), TomTom (a bit struggling with heavy dependence on legacy business and hardware) and then a longer tail of smaller players difficult to reach the position of scale and capabilities where HERE is at. This is one of the opportunities for HERE to build the “Mobility Graph” of the world while monetizing with an open partnership model connecting demand and supply.

Location Platform Effectiveness Index: HERE Leads Ahead of Google & TomTom

With proliferation of internet, growth in mobile devices, applications, increasing urbanization, rise of e-commerce and on-demand services, the power of location has been the key driver underneath. Location-centric solutions such as maps have been the enabling force not only for getting from point A to B but also for search, discovery and adding context to so many other aspects from content to communication. Considering this, the location maps providers have been transforming into a more of a platform play to add intelligence on top of the maps to capture the context and analytics to analyze different intelligent data points and transform into information for actionable services. These actionable services will power advanced connected autonomous transportation systems as well as plethora of connected things ensuring better productivity, safety and experiences.

Exhibit 1: Open Location Platform Approach A Winning Strategy

As a result, at Counterpoint Research, we have expanded our location ecosystems research evaluating different key independent location platform providers on different metrics to measure their transition and positioning into a complete versatile “location platform”. Our latest research evaluation for the first half of 2017 is based on different parameters from richness of database, location intelligence loopback, analytics engine, different location solutions, services, business model approach as well as customer, investor and partner traction across different verticals.

Commenting on the findings, Research Director, Neil Shah, noted, “Key mapping and navigation players are transforming from mapping solution-centric to a more open and horizontal service-centric platform approach. Though very few players in this ecosystem have fully aligned to this futuristic approach to scale the platform using a truly open-partnership model. HERE has been driving this trend to be a pure conflict-free horizontal platform which has helped it to become the leading location platform player globally. HERE’s leading open mapping platform has integrated customer and partner driven location intelligence with the rich mapping database topped with big data analytics capabilities allowing it to build newer services and power unique but advanced location experiences across the spectrum. Google closely follows for now on mapping dataset and solutions front because of its strong consumer offering via Android platform. However, lesser focus on enterprise grade mapping and conflicting business model approach is driving potential customers to likes of HERE and TomTom”

Mr. Shah, further adds, “The Open Location Platform (OLP) approach adopted by HERE has put it in a unique position to expand customer base, strike key strategic partnerships and attract investments. The momentum has continued to build across IoT, automotive verticals with series of partners and customers contributing to HERE’s platform dynamically with its data and making it richer to leverage location intelligence and analytics. However, attracting consumer facing application developers to drive Google type scale, building more potential services based on the growing customer contribution to the open location intelligence platform and driving monetization from the newly driven services should be the key focus areas moving forward to widen the lead with nearest rivals.”

Exhibit 2: Global Location Platform Index & Rankings

Research Director Jeff Fieldhack, highlighted, “Google leads in terms of access to billions of active map users giving it enormous scale and making it map database richer from search, POI and basic navigation perspective. However, Google’s advertising and user data profiling driven business model is a conflict of interest for many app developers and services providers on its own platform as well as other potential customers in IoT and automotive segments, stunting its growth opportunities to grow as a location platform beyond smartphones.”

Further, Mr. Fieldhack adds, “Google is less focused on making its mapping database enterprise grade or as open as HERE and actually more focused on leveraging location context to drive advertising revenues. Google has its work cut out to drive serious traction in enterprise and automotive segments where rivals are leading not only with solutions but next generation location based intelligent services as well. The vertically integrated rival Apple is also at disadvantage trying to catch up with rivals platform quality and learning that building a mapping platform is a tough task. Apple has certainly seen decent progress over the years for its mapping solution but still far away from HERE or Google grade or becoming a true location platform”

Commenting on third ranked location platform player, Research Director Tom Kang, highlighted, “TomTom is transforming well with HD Maps and focus on autonomous vehicles to drive its licensing business though its vertically integrated consumer hardware business dilutes the focus on potential opportunity out there. Having said that, TomTom has been able to drive some momentum in telematics space in last one year or so. This momentum needs to further expand into high value enterprise and automotive sector.”

On other leading location platform providers, Mr. Kang, adds, “There are number of other mapping platforms with great mapping and navigation solutions such as SK Telecom’s T-Maps, Naver in South Korea to Zenrin in Japan to AutoNavi and NavInfo in China. But these players are grouped and ranked under regional champions leading in their respective geographies with advanced location platforms but not yet global level scale of Google or HERE missing out on huge opportunity out there. On the other hand, players such as Mapbox and Telenav have great potential are quietly chipping away share away from Google steadily building a strong mapping platform offering to the location ecosystem players.”


The comprehensive 1H 2017, Location Platform Index research – Value Chain, Evaluations, KPIs, Profiles, Traction, Focus Areas and more on key Location Platform Players is available for subscribing clients and can be downloaded from our Research Portal (

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This data may also be used in the aggregate, to identify appropriate product offerings and subscription plans.
Cookies may be set in order to identify you and determine your access privileges. Cookies are simply identifiers. You have the ability to delete cookie files from your hard disk drive.