Photos via Jaymi Heimbuch
Navteq, a digital mapping firm owned by Nokia, has some handy applications. One of them provides drivers with real-time traffic information, which helps them to avoid congestion and so have a more efficient trip. Another provides pedestrians with ways to discover the city around them, getting more people to get out of cars and into greener methods of transportation, without the headache.
Ever been walking from point A to point B, tried to take a short cut that you thought would work out, only to have the sidewalk dead end, or find out that while the directions you have work great for cars, there's actually no place at all for pedestrians? Frustrating, isn't it. In an effort to help those of us who like to get from place to place sans car, Navteq's Discover Cities app puts information about sidewals - and public transit systems - on your mobile phone.
"NAVTEQ Discover Cities combines pedestrian thoroughfares like sidewalks, walkways, tunnels and bridges with time-sensitive public transit system information to enable multi-modal routing. For the first time, urban travelers with enabled devices will be able to take full advantage of their surroundings by being able to get from place to place using the most time efficient and closest transit option."
Since 2004, Navteq has provided real-time traffic reporting on their navigation systems. In April, they put out a study showing that drivers using navigation devices not only drive shorter distances and spend less time driving, but also that those two improvements lead to a 12% increase in fuel efficiency. When you add in the ability to avoid traffic jams, that level can go up even further.
"In North America, we have assembled a unique and comprehensive combination of high-quality data sources, advanced technology and quality processes necessary to support and deliver robust, nationwide real-time traffic coverage."
The traffic analysis screen looks very easy to read at a glance - obviously important if you're busy driving.
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