Garmin to pull out of smartphone business?

Garmin-ASUS nuvifone A50

Garmin could pull out of the smartphone business as early as six months from now if it cannot improve its fortunes by then. In an interview with Reuters, Chief Financial Officer Kevin Rauckman confirmed what had long been thought: Nuvifone sales have yet to meet company expectations. For example, in Q2, Garmin smartphones only totaled US$27 million. Rauckman said:

“We’re pragmatic. If we end up ultimately not successful with units … we’ll have to sit back and evaluate that and consider making the best decision for our business. We’ll have to make decisions within the next couple of quarters — whether we continue to invest or whether we pull back.”

Garmin’s overall business has struggled of late. Personal navigation device (PND) sales are down as well as smartphones offer similar services and Google and Nokia began to offer their own free turn-by-turn navigation services.

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