NAVTEQ vs. Tele Atlas

If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you’ll recall that the mapping data for most of the online mapping services, and for the driving directions on GPS navigation systems, invariably comes from one of two map database suppliers: NAVTEQ and Tele Atlas. With that kind of duopoly, we might expect a kind of holy war of the likes of Mac vs. PC or Canon vs. Nikon, were it not for the fact that businesses, not consumers, are these companies’ customers.

Still, comparisons are inevitable, and Tim at GPS Review has just done a doozy of a comparison, looking at how two GPS receivers, one using NAVTEQ data, the other using Tele Atlas data, resolve 500 addresses — half business, half residential. There was a six-point spread, in Tele Atlas’s favour, in both residential and business address accuracy, but in no case was accuracy less than 83 per cent — and Tim deliberately picked new addresses as a check against old data. His take: that the map data supplier shouldn’t be a deciding factor when picking out a GPS receiver — other factors are more important.