Ford and Qualcomm jettison telematics venture

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Ford and Qualcomm jettison telematics venture

Ford and wireless technology company Qualcomm have folded Wingcast, their joint venture launched in 2000 to develop wireless data services for vehicles.

Wingcast was developing "telematics" technology and services - a combination of GPS tracking and wireless communication for automatic roadside assistance and remote diagnostics. General Motors was the first in the telematics field with its OnStar system.

Ford said that it was still committed to bringing telematics to its vehicles. However, it said it does "not believe it is necessary to have equity interest in a telematics service provider in order to meet that goal".

Ford owned roughly 85% of the Wingcast venture, while Qualcomm held the remaining 15%.

Ford has provided the sole source of funding for Wingcast since May 2001. Before that, Qualcomm invested $25m (£17.4m) in the venture in exchange for its minority stake.

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