updated 01:00 pm EST, Wed December 14, 2011
TeleNav goes to web and free model
TeleNav on Wednesday gave a preview of a major rethink of its GPS business. The company has developed an HTML5-based web app that provides turn-by-turn GPS on iPhones, Windows Phone, or any device that supports the modern web standard. Many of the features of native apps will remain, including voice guidance, fully animated maps, points of interest, and automatic redirection.
Almost as important is the business model, TeleNav said. In spite of building its foundation on subscription services through carriers, TeleNav will make the service free to use, both as a driver and as a developer. Using the new service will only need a single line of code.
A proper launch is expected sometime in early 2012.
The app won't be as full-featured as something like Google Maps Navigation but could up-end the GPS app market. A few free native GPS apps exist on some other platforms, but these are usually either crowd-sourced or device-specific, such as the Nokia Drive app on Lumia phones. iPhone owners would have their own free app for basic guidance.