China News, 12/21/07
The Chinese Academy of Sciences' Institute of Microelectronics and Hangzhou Zhongke Microelectronics have successfully developed a proprietary low-cost satellite navigation chipset for mobile phones. Head of the Institute and chairman of CASIC Ye Tianchun explained that each chipset will cost only USD 2, in comparison with USD 12 for an imported version.
CASIC GM Yin Ming revealed that mobile phones featuring the chipset are expected to be on the market in the first six months of 2008, with talks currently underway with five domestic manufacturers.
According to a report from market research firm ABI, global production of satellite-navigation enabled mobile phones is set to increase from 240 million units in 2008 to 550 million units - worth USD 100 bln - in 2012. With the advent of 3G, at least 50% of handsets will include satellite navigation features.