According to the J D Power and Associates 2012 US Navigation Usage and Satisfaction study, the increasing complexity of navigation systems is beginning to impact how happy consumers are with their cars.
The study suggests that owners are becoming frustrated by the complicated nature of modern menu systems, voice control commands and the ways you input your destination. Researchers identified six factors that contribute to overall satisfaction levels: ease of use; routing; navigation display screen; speed of system; voice directions and voice activation. On average, consumers reported a satisfaction level of 681 based on a 1,000-point scale, which the firm says is a 13-point decrease from 2011.
Most notably, the ease of use category fell, which declined 25 points year-onyear. http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/
Dubbed HD Traffic version 6.0, this latest upgrade combines information from over 76 million live sources, including connected navigation devices, mobile phones, and real-time incident data. From this, TomTom dashtop navigators and smart-phone apps are able to provide route guidance informed by local road conditions and react to changing congestion patterns. TomTom has also announced a partnership with Telenav to offer traffic information to its mobile users through the free Scout nav app, available on Android, iOS, and Windows devices. http://news.consumerreports.org/
INRIX® has launched the industry’s first parking navigation service. It goes beyond static parking Points of Interest (POIs) to provide the current cost to park, real-time information on the number of available spaces and detailed location information for a continuously expanding and updated database of off street parking locations in North America and 36 countries throughout Europe. Kenwood will be the first consumer electronics manufacturer to implement INRIX Parking in its new in-dash DVD entertainment receivers. www.inrix.com
Students and lecturers from Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Singapore have developed the smartphone application that uses GPS technology to map out the shortest path that is safe for them. The app, which guides the user via audio instructions and alarm beeps, also factors in the weather, taking a sheltered route to the destination, if it is raining. The project aims to help the blind get around more independently as they often have to rely on passers-by or guide dogs to find their way around. Some visually-handicapped individuals also have a muted social life because of their inability to navigate new and unfamiliar paths. http://www.straitstimes.com/
More than 18 months after the Government made it mandatory for mobile companies to set up location-based services, the operators are yet to implement it. The Cellular Operators Association of India has told the Department of Telecom (DoT) that telecom companies will not be able to set up the system unless the Government bears the cost.
In May 2011, the DoT had amended the mobile licences making it mandatory for setting up location-based services (LBS). This was done at the behest of security agencies because this technology, when implemented, will allow law enforcement agencies to pin point the location of a mobile user. According to the order issued by the DoT, operators were supposed to build capability that would show the location of a subscriber with an accuracy of 50 metres. According to mobile companies, it would cost over a billion dollars to implement this technology. In addition, they say the technology does not allow achieving the accuracy levels required by DoT.
“The service providers have diligently worked and explored various options to meet DoT requirements. The available solutions have many aspects that do not meet the technical requirements and have many flaws, which would result in non-compliance of the requirement when implemented on ground leading to the potential imposition of onerous penalties,” the COAI said in a letter to DoT. However, technology vendors claim that the accuracy levels suggested by the DoT are achievable. For example, Polaris Wireless, one of the vendors of LBS technology, has written to the DoT that it has conducted trials with two operators.
However, COAI said the technical solutions available are not cost efficient. “Since this is purely a security requirement, we believe that the project should be funded by Government,” COAI said. www.thehindubusinessline.com/
Movea has demonstrated accurate indoor navigation through its new mobile app. Movea’s indoor navigation system takes signals from a handset’s accelerometer, magnetometer, gyroscope, pressure sensor, GPS, and Wi-Fi, and matches them against known maps. To begin with, Movea’s mobile app asks for the user’s height in order to estimate one’s step length. With every move the user makes, the phone’s accelerometer registers the step and the app detects the movement. The app further uses the phone’s magnetometer as a compass to determine which way the user is facing. www.mobilenapps.com/
Apple has shown continued interest in offering easy access to local emergency services when traveling through the iPhone. The concept is detailed in a patent continuation published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Of