Traffic Goes Social

For a while now my Android phone has also been my GPS, Google Maps for Android does a terrific job with turn by turn navigation, as well as showing traffic which at times is ridiculously accurate.  The other day I came across Waze, a free app available for Android, iPhone and Blackberry which not only provides Turn by Turn navigation, but uses your data to build more accurate traffic maps.  It uses your GPS to determine your speed and assess traffic conditions, but it also allows you to easily send in a traffic or weather condition.

It was only a matter of time until traffic went social, there are some gaming aspects of Waze which I don’t particularly care about, but accurate to the second traffic reports, those are helpful.

Here is some more info on how Waze works

This is definitely an improvement over the old traffic reports every 10 minutes on the radio, which I always summed up in two rules.

Rule 1: They will never mention the spot you are sitting in traffic

Rule 2: In exception to rule #1 if they do mention the stop you are in boy are you in trouble.

5 Responses to Traffic Goes Social
  1. Thomas Duff
    October 19, 2011 | 1:40 pm

    I started seeing Waze come through in the twitter feeds of some local people I follow. But since I don’t commute any longer (sorry, Mitch… I know you miss the tweets), I decided I didn’t care. I’ve filtered them out for now on Tweetdeck, but I may add back in at a later date if Waze takes off.

    • Mitch Cohen
      October 19, 2011 | 1:46 pm

      I have not connected Waze to Twitter (yet) I do like the in map traffic alerts though.. And yes I do miss your commute tweets 🙂

  2. steve bradley
    October 19, 2011 | 2:00 pm

    I started using Waze a couple of months ago. It definitely needs more people to use it to be valuable (which is true of any social tool.) More users would increase the accuracy of the maps and routing…which I found to be very good in some cases, and REALLY bad in other cases. Joining Waze Groups helps too, if there are a lot of users in your area. While the app on my phone is good, I cannot for the life of me figure out the map editing stuff on their web site. Totally lost there.

  3. Gary Wood
    November 17, 2011 | 4:21 pm

    Be careful about using your phone for GPS. I got a ticket for that. Simply holding a device capable of texting while sitting at a traffic light was sufficient to get the ticket – $150.

    • Mitch Cohen
      November 17, 2011 | 4:24 pm

      I have the dashboard mount for my Droid X so hopefully it just looks like a GPS.

      Did you try to fight the ticket?