5 July 12 20:07–Successful Israeli navigation app developer Waze Ltd. has reached an important milestone: it has 20 million registered users worldwide, including 1.1 million active customers in Israel. The number of Israelis who have downloaded its app is even higher at 1.8 million – most of the country’s smartphone owners.
For the past three years, Waze CEO Noam Bardin has been marketing the app around the world. He spends most of his time travelling between Israel and the US, where he spends five weeks at a time, at the company’s office in San Francisco.
The decision to open a US office turns out to have been an important milestone. The physical proximity to Apple Inc’s (Nasdaq: AAPL) offices gave rise to collaboration, in which Waze and navigation software and devices developer TomTom NV (Euronext: TOM2) will provide traffic updates, and apparently maps as well, for Apple’s navigation software, which is due out in the autumn. Bardin declines to disclose details about this fascinating collaboration.
Waze is not seeking to go head to head against Apple or Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG). It continues to differentiate its product, which, in addition to navigation, includes a social network of drivers who report congestion, police patrols, and accidents. The company has just launched its gas stations feature in Israel, following the US launch, which tells drivers about prices at fuel stations nearby, and offers coupons at participating stations…Read More>>