Satnav main-stay TomTom is set to cut 10 per cent of its employees, as part of an overhaul of its research and development (R&D) department, hoping to reduce the time it takes to make products ready for sale.
"We will reduce the number of full time jobs by 457, which accounts for approximately 10 per cent of the total workforce. 255 roles will be made redundant, half of which are in The Netherlands," said a TomTom spokesperson in a statement.
As well as shortening the time span between a product's conception and its placement in the market, TomTom plans to cut costs by around 50 million euros. The cut costs is no doubt in relation to the near 25 per cent drop in sales over the last quarter.
R&D will now be spread over a wider variety of departments, each one specifically focusing on a certain aspect of TomTom development. These are: maps traffic, navigation, automotive systems, portable navigation devices, fleet services, fitness, mobile, points of interest and speedcams.
The Register reports that some of these areas will have increased funding depending on their growth. The ones expected to get the most are maps, traffic intelligence and navigation.
Analysts expect the fall in sales is largely due to the increased uptake of smartphones, most of which have the ability to use applications to perform all the functions of a traditional sat-nav. Even those without advanced capabilities can make use of Google maps to find out where they are.