Garmin has officially confirmed its divorce from ASUS, with the company confirming last week's rumors regarding the ill-fated Garmin-Asus partnership. Describing the move as "new mobile handset strategies," the non-press-speak version is that while existing Garmin-Asus devices will remain on sale, the two companies won't be working together on new models.
Instead, ASUS will be free to "design and manufacture new models of ASUS-branded mobile phones, some of which will include preloaded Garmin navigation and Location Based Service (LBS) applications" while Garmin will look to pushing its software navigation systems. Tellingly, it's aiming for distribution " through certain consumer application stores," and if that isn't an iOS App Store hint then we don't know what is.
Garmin and ASUS Announce New Mobile Handset Strategies
Schaffhausen, Switzerland and Taipei, Taiwan/October 26, 2010/Business Wire — Garmin Ltd. (NASDAQ: GRMN) and ASUSTeK Computer Inc. (TAIEX: 2357) today announced a strategic decision to alter their current co-branded business model for location-centric mobile handsets. The two companies will not introduce any new co-branded handset models going forward, but will continue to sell and support models that have already been introduced to the market. ASUS will design and manufacture new models of ASUS-branded mobile phones, some of which will include preloaded Garmin navigation and Location Based Service (LBS) applications. Garmin will expand its mobile handset application development and plans to offer navigation and other applications through certain consumer application stores.
Since the announcement of the Garmin-Asus strategic alliance in February 2009, the companies have developed and marketed six devices. These products are available through carrier and retail channels in a large number of countries. Customer support continues to be of utmost importance to Garmin and ASUS, and Garmin-Asus smartphone customers will continue to receive product support, software updates and/or downloads from either Garmin or Asus, depending upon the region.
Additional details about ASUS and Garmin’s future product roadmaps will be discussed during their independent third quarter earnings calls on October 28, 2010, and November 3, 2010, respectively.
Garmin-Asus is a co-branded strategic alliance that enables Garmin Ltd. and ASUSTeK Computer Inc. to combine their complementary resources to develop world class LBS-centric mobile phones.