Philips Australia not concerned about losing navigation

By James Wells

SYDNEY: Philips Australia has admitted that a decision not to manufacture mobile personal navigation devices is not a concern because the products were not expected to be introduced into the local market.

According to a report from Reuters, Philips Consumer Electronics chief executive officer, Rudy Provoost told market analysts yesterday that the largest manufacturer of consumer electronics in Europe would not be entering the mobile personal navigation market even though it had announced it will enter the category in June with a product two centimeters thick and weighing 160 grams.

According to the report, Provoost said the reasons why the company will not enter the market include existing competition from brands including TomTom, Garmin and Navman and the low profitability which is expected from a new product in a saturated market.

A spokesperson for Philips Australia told Current.com.au that the decision not to enter the portable navigation device market should not be a concern to local retailers.

“While it’s a global decision, it will not impact on Philips locally as it was not a product category we were looking to introduce into Australia.”

Last week, Choice Magazine criticised the performance of several portable navigation devices in the Australian marketplace.

The Choice report cited a number of problems associated with the devices including a poor performance in an underground car park or tunnel as well as in built-up areas where buildings can block a view of the sky. The report also found that the performance of the product was limited to the mapping data supplied with the unit which was often weak outside major metropolitan areas.

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