*Justin* schreef op 30 december 2015 15:47:
Battle for HD maps heats up but TT is far ahead
In the last 2 weeks we have seen several interesting developments with regards to HD maps. First there was a presentation by Elektrobit (owned by Continental) about HD maps and car sensors. In this presentation, Elektrobit outlined its plans for Autodrive, a new solution that would use car sensor data to obtain data from cars about slope, road signs, barriers, curves and temperature. This data would then be analysed and compiled and added to a conventional road map after which NDS would allow Elektrobit to provide 2 weekly map updates with higher frequencies for certain attributes. Elektrobit did not state when the service would be available or what partners is has signed up but it does have a JV with Audi (e.solutions) that focuses on ADAS and automated driving. Most likely, more details will be revealed at the upcoming CES in Las Vegas.
This news was followed by news from Toyota that announced the presentation of a high precision map generation system using on board cameras and GPS in standard production vehicles. According to Toyota, these cars would capture road images and vehicle positional information after which they would be sent to datacenters. Combined with image matching technology and trajectory estimation technology, Toyota would then be able to produce high precision road maps that cover a wide area. The systems will be available in cars as of 2020.
The Elektrobit and Toyota news shows that the industry has certainly woken up to the fact that the current methodology of compiling and updating maps is not going to work in an ADAS, semi-automated and automated driving world. Elektrobit's solution is interesting but there is no new technology and it is not clear when this solution will be available and moreover, even if it works it still requires a base map (from TT or Here) and can only deliver map updates every two weeks. TomTom is already able to update maps today at the a higher frequency (also using NDS) while it has the ability to incorporate traffic info, which Elektrobit still has to source from a 3rd party. The Toyota news is also very interesting as it appears to be saying that it will also build maps from scratch. But the systems required to start building those maps will only be available as of 2020 meaning that TomTom still has a huge head start. Especially if LIDAR becomes more available due to lower cost prices, which then means TomTom can use RoadDNA to offer OEMs not only HD maps but also traffic and incredibly accurate location technology. At the moment, Toyota is only using TomTom for traffic services in Europe.
Although Tier 1s (like Eletrobit) and OEMs (like Toyota) have started looking at ways to improve HD map making using sensor data and other technology, we continue to believe that TomTom has a firm lead in this space because of its new content production platform (see latest press release) that will allow automated and continuous map updates using a cloud based backbone and NDS. With the development of high precision location technology RoadDNA (although it requires LIDAR) also shows that TomTom is well ahead of the competition based on the news flow from Elektrobit and Toyota. But competition is heating up, which could have an impact on pricing. We continue to rate the shares Buy (although 4Q15 and at least 1Q16 will be difficult quarters for TT) because of the potential of TomTom in the Automotive and Telematics segments of the market.