12/10/2008 11:24:00 AM
Vodafone set to buy navigation firm Wayfinder
Vodafone is closing in on a deal to buy the GPS technology company, Wayfinder.
The operator has made a cash offer to Wayfinder’s shareholders, after being strongly advised to do so by Vodafone’s board members.
It signals a decision by the Swedish operator to move into mapping and location-based services.
Wayfinder is used to search for and navigate to specific locations, such as restaurants, petrol stations and
Vodafone is increasingly looking to shift its focus to include such services under the stewardship of internet services director Pieter Knook, who was lured from Microsoft to Vodafone in February this year.
Wayfinder is presently offering a free three-month trial to customers who own the Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 (pictured, right), G705, C905, C702 and W760 handsets.
Knook said: ‘The Wayfinder software enables mobile phones to display user-friendly maps as well as deliver voice directions to drivers in the same way as dedicated navigation devices. We believe our customers will greatly value being able to get accurate voice directions from their mobiles.’