The demise of paid mobile mapping applications has begun. Just last year, European wireless carrier Vodafone shelled out $30 million to purchase Swedish startup Wayfinder, a turn-by-turn navigation platform. Of course, at the time Vodafone has every intention of charging for the application to make that $30 million back.
With the release of free Google Maps Navigation and free Nokia Ovi Maps navigation, both fully featured turn-by-turn navigation apps, Vodafone’s Wayfinder vision was cooked and the service has been officially shut down.
Vodafone’s Anna Cloke spoke to Engadget and put things into perspective:
“We could not charge for something that other gave away for free.”
And the deathwatch begins…