More cars built with in-dash navigation units

More vehicles are rolling off the factory floor with in-dash navigation units built in as standard, according to ABI Research.

Once considered a luxury optional addition to fleet and personal vehicles, navigation units have become an integral part of standard car technologies. Adding a navigation system to your fleet software solution can be a simple way to improve travel times and efficiency while out on unfamiliar roads.

A March 17 report from ABI Research predicts the proportion of cars built with embedded in-dash factory installed navigation units will increase from 22 per cent in December 2013 to 38 per cent by 2019. This represents a compound annual growth rate of 13.6 per cent.

However, ABI Research Principal Analyst Gareth Owen believes the growth of in-built navigation units will be "eclipsed" by the number of drivers using smartphone-based navigation technology - particularly those devices using cloud computing systems to determine locations.

Drivers have long embraced the trend of using mobile phone-based navigation, rather than built-in devices. This is attributed in part to the free or low-cost accessibility to smartphone apps, such as Google Maps, Navfree and MapFactor.

However, the use of mobile phones while driving is a hotly debated topic. While many argue that inputting addresses into a smartphone navigation system is not accounted for under the mobile phone restrictive laws, others will know that operating these devices while driving is a risky task.

Built-in navigation units are typically easier to use and more commonly hands-free than a mobile phone-based navigation app. Additionally, relying on a smartphone to be switched on while driving can lead to a driver becoming distracted when a message or phone call alert goes off.

With the increasingly rate of vehicles being built with in-dash navigation devices, a fleet manager willing to invest in these new cars can benefit from the peace of mind their drivers are not compelled to use their mobiles while behind the wheel.