What's the Latest Development?

Waze, Skobbler and Navfree are part of the new breed of free navigation apps with an emphasis on social features and crowdsourced data. Waze, for example, draws data on roads and traffic by analysing collective data from its users, while also enabling them to actively submit reports on accidents, police traps and other blockages.

What's the Big Idea?

The big threat for these companies is if navigation evolves into a standard feature in smartphones provided by the handset maker and/or software provider. Google Maps Navigation already offers formidable competition on Android, and few people would bet against Apple bringing navigation in-house for iOS at some point.