Uber, which is widely known for its controversial service enabling average Joes to offer rides at cheaper rates than taxi drivers, is willing to spend $3 billion to purchase Nokia's HERE mapping technology, according to Business Insider.
It will face competition from a trio of automakers: Daimler, BMW, and Audi have formed a consortium and agreed to supply around $785 million each to match HERE's book value. Some investment bankers hoped private equity could partner with these automotive companies to create an alliance that would not be dominated by one particular company.
Nokia's HERE offers many premium services that Google maps can't match. For instance, their maps can be linked to a smartphone signal so that parents can see on which side of the school their children are waiting to be picked up. Using this information, the vehicle can adjust the navigation route accordingly.
Car manufacturers will need to fight to prevent Nokia from selling HERE to Uber or another tech giant, which may block their access to it. However, Uber has a greater market capitalization ($721 billion) than Daimler, Volkswagen, Renault, Peugeot, Fiat Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors combined.