In-car navigation provider Dash and Yahoo Local announced a deal to deliver Yahoo Local content via Dash’s portable “Dash Express” device and system. Dash Express, which features Internet connectivity, will be available in California in the spring of this year and across the U.S. nationally in the fall.
The system will provide nearby business information from Yahoo Local in response to user queries. Location is determined via GPS (or can be specified). Yahoo’s User-generated content and ratings will also be delivered in addition to other information about the desired business or category.
Routing is automatically provided.
Currently local business information is available through other in-car and portable navigation systems, but this will be the richest implementation on the market. Accordingly, the Yahoo-branded content offers a boost for Dash in the emerging marketplace for personal navigation devices.
In-car mobile local search will be quite common in a year or two. Expect all vehicles above a certain price threshold to offer local content through embedded, in-car systems. Dash is an off-the-shelf product. You can also expect Dash competitors such as Tom Tom to upgrade their content in response.
Internet-connected portable devices like Dash or Tom Tom offer interesting possibilities for mobile-local search as alternatives to conventional mobile phones or even smartphones. It will be interesting to see if this deal sparks a kind of “land grab” among Google, Yahoo and Microsoft for in-car devices — as extensions of their desktop and emerging mobile search offerings.