The companies have been working together since 2012, when Apple released iOS 6 with Apple Maps to replace the former map and navigation provider — Google Maps. TomTom provides a good deal of the street-level mapping data for Europe and North America, which are two of Apple’s largest markets. The terms of the agreement between TomTom and Apple are unknown, nor is it clear if Apple will continue to use TomTom’s information in the future.
Apple has been operating a fleet of minivans in the United States that are equipped with ultra-precise GPS equipment and high-resolution laser scanners, ostensibly for creating its own street-level mapping database. It could very well be that the Apple information will be used to add to the data provided by TomTom and the OpenStreetMap project, or perhaps add Google Street View-like imagery.