Thursday, January 14, 2010

Are you Wazing ?

I saw this extremely interesting video on youtube and then checked out some of the companies. One of them that caught my attention was Waze.

Waze is a social mobile application to provide live traffic updates, map generation/updates from driver generated reports and other information (like a hazard or a road construction etc.). It is 100% user generated content and relies on drivers who download this application to their phones and run it while driving. By tracking GPS points from multiple drivers, the basic road network can be constructed. Although most information is provided by the ‘passive’ drivers, users can also take an active role by, say, reporting map errors or recording new roads (all by simple clicks in the application) and those who want to participate even more can then go to the waze website and fix map errors as well (yup, power of user-generated content strikes again !)

What is different in Waze is that it is not a turn-by-turn navigation application (many attributes like street names, traffic lights, speed limits may be absent) but it is for those who commute everyday to work or drive the same route often and helps them get there faster since the keyword here is ‘live updates’. For now the Waze community, especially in Europe, is very small but like all user communities, this one will grow too – people will do anything to avoid traffic (except using public transport, ofcourse), won’t they ?

If you want to know more, check out the guided tour - It is less than 10 minutes and provides a good overview. Waze has been nominated for both the ‘Best GPS Navigation App’ and ‘Best Use of Location Services’, we should wait and see if they are going to win.
Hit Counter
Website Hit Counter I had decided to have a counter only after I hit a 1000 views and since it happened last week (as on 14 Dec 2009), now is the time to see some stats :)