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TomTom to drop SiRF on ONE?


There are rumors floating around that TomTom might be near a deal with Global Locate to use their GPS chipsets in upcoming versions of their GPS devices. Specifically it is rumored that they will use the Global Locate chips in a newer version of the TomTom ONE which could be released as soon as a couple of weeks from now. What do we think of this?

We see it as a good decision if it is true. (I can hear now the arguments from GPS enthusiasts who think any GPS without a SiRFstarIII chipset isn’t worth using.) While the SiRF chipsets are fantastic, fantastic comes at a price. By using Global Locate chips in some of their devices they could very well be able to slightly lower the price of some of their devices.

It also helps TomTom put more eggs in more baskets so to speak. TomTom has already shown us they strive to be as flexible as possible in their choice of vendors. Some of their products use Tele Atlas maps while others use NAVTEQ maps which puts them in a better position to make important decisions since they already have a working relationship with both vendors.

By adding Global Locate chipsets to some of the devices they would then achieve the same flexibility in picking the best chipset for each product regardless of vendor.

Don’t get me wrong… SiRF will likely remain the popular GPS chipset maker in consumer GPS devices for many months to come, but we still believe this is a good decision for TomTom… if it is in fact true. I have one GPS device that is not a 20 channel SiRF receiver that I’ve logged nearly 5,000 miles with that has never once lost its signal.

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