Mobile’s little brother is catching up

mobiletelematicsThe Mobile World Conference (WMC) took place recently in Barcelona and proved once again that Telematics/Infotainment (T/I) is increasingly sharing its technology infrastructure with Mobile.  DOOH is also connected with Mobile and T/I.  Here are three key points marketers should keep in mind about the telematics-mobile relationship:

1) Location based services (LBS) and mobile social are driving innovation.  As phones increasingly incorporate GPS and become more location-enabled, developers will create more location aware applications.  Social Mobile is the logical offshoot of this technology and offers users, advertisers, and brands unique challenges and opportunities.  Thomas Hallauer writes in Telematics, “by combining location and social networking, the mobile industry will be able to tempt advertisers with reliable profiling from a very extensive and rich source of consumer information, as well as precise targeting at the mobile consumer market.”  There are many large players in this space looking advance this capability in a time when new revenue streams are much needed.

2) Personal Navigation Devices (PND’s) are still evolving.  The devices coming to market are better able to leverage their unique properties such as screen size, GPS, mapping, etc.  PND’s are finding ways to provide robust GPS navigation combined with LBS and a social layer to provide a rich user environment. Because you have already opted in your interests on your two-way PND, advertisers could entice you to bring your friends to a destination.  Imagine if you will, friends heading to the beach and the group using GPS/LPS/Social decide to meet up at Carl’s Jr because a group discount was offered via LBS.

3) The automotive aspect of all this should not be lost.  Fiat is partnering with Telecom Italia to provide connectivity with a company called Accenture offering a Pay As You Drive Insurance platform. Concepts like this have been covered in previous blogs and point to the potential collaborative efforts can bring to consumers.  Providing additional value to existing product sets or introducing tangible savings to consumers through such alliances is a plus for all.  Network infrastructure provider Alcatel Lucent’s statement to increase their focus on the automotive market is another sign of the potential offered by this segment despite the current turmoil.

The excitement from what was shown at MWC is that as mobility, LBS, and social continue to work together more and more providers will find tangible approaches to leveraging the above.  Content will continue to play an important role in the Mobile and Infotainment spaces.  As network capacity grows along with GPS and social, sharing content from trips or just around town POI’s will help to further engrain location aware devices into the consumers world.

The more mobile devices extend a consumer’s world and allow a mobile consumer to share their “environment” with others, the more powerful the tool.  This consumer driven mobile “environment” will be a boon for advertisers seeing the future as a needed investment.  Brands and agencies cannot ignore the value that LBS/GPS/Mobile social will continue to bring.