TomTom, which posted a second-quarter loss last week, said it will provide historical traffic data to the government of Flanders as the northern Belgian region tries to improve congestion on its roads.
The Dutch personal navigation specialist said it would provide information to the government about traffic speeds on the roads. These will be used to validate the government's strategic traffic model with measurements from actual driven trips.
Each TomTom device can transmit travel information to a data center, provided the owner approves. The data can be used to provide traffic information to authorities, traffic services providers and others.
"We are pleased to be able to assist the Flemish Government to help them improve the flow of the traffic on their roads," said Maarten van Gool, managing director of TomTom Licensing. He added in a press release that the data will help the Flemish government to "significantly better analyse road conditions and traffic performance."
TomTom is looking for new ways to grow revenue, which declined 13 pc to 314 million euros in the second quarter of 2010. Net earnings swung to a loss of 489 million euros from a profit of Â 34 million euros a year earlier.
Harold Goddijn, TomTom CEO, said in the company's earnings press release that the loss reflected a decline in the market for personal navigation devices (PNDs). He attributed this to a weak consumer electronics market.
Goddijn added, however, that the company's automotive business posted higher revenue. TomTom expects its automotive business to post continued increases in its systems and licensing business.
The PND markets are expected to decline this year "at the high end ofÂ the previously communicated range of between 15 and 20 pc, particularly as aÂ result of a steep decline in the North American market."