Navteq Debuts New Real-Time Traffic; Magellan Is First To Offer Service
By Amy Gilroy On Apr 24 2006 - 6:00am
Navteq, a leading GPS map provider, has joined with CBS Radio to launch a real-time traffic service for certain GPS devices and PDAs in 42 markets.
The new service, called Navteq Traffic, sends traffic information to GPS products using Radio Data System (RDS) service. The service will use CBS Radio's transmission facilities in major metropolitan markets across the country, covering a population of more than 120 million people.
One of the first suppliers to use the new Navteq Traffic service is Magellan, which just introduced three compatible portable GPS.
Navteq Traffic information will be the third arm of Navteq Real Time Traffic services. It currently provides traffic for both XM NavTraffic and Sirius Traffic.
Updates under the service are offered about every five minutes. Navteq said it plans to expand to 50 markets by the end of 2006, according to Howard Hayes, dynamic content product management VP.
Navteq runs a 24/7 operations center that monitors and corroborates traffic information pooled from commercial traffic data from Westwood One's Metro/Shadow, government departments of transportation, police and emergency services, road sensors, cameras and airborne reports.
Although real-time traffic is estimated to enjoy only a small user base of less than 100,000 subscribers, it could grow to a user base of 6-8 million by 2010, according to The Telematics Research Group, Minnetonka, Minn.
Navteq's Hayes expects that almost every newly designed after-market in-car and portable GPS device will offer real-time traffic in the next year or two.
Magellan's new GPS devices with Navteq Traffic include the top-line RoadMate 6000T which has an integrated traffic receiver. The unit is also the first from Magellan to offer hands-free calling with Bluetooth-enabled phones. It can simultaneously provide turn-by-turn directions while playing MP3 and WMA music files from an SD or MMC card. The unit also has text-to-speech verbal announcements of the road names for upcoming turns.
It is joined by the RoadMate 3000T, which operates with an optional Navteq Traffic receiver, and the 3050T, which comes with an outboard traffic receiver.
All have 3.5-inch color touch screens and preloaded maps, a photo viewer, integrated battery and a music player, as well a new user interface for easier navigating, said Thales Navigation, which markets the Magellan brand.
The 6000T will ship in July with three months of service at a price to be announced. The RoadMate 3000T will be available in April at $599, with a traffic service accessory to follow in June at $149 (including 15 months of service), joined by the 3050T in June at $649 with three months of service.
Navteq said it is examining offering a fourth real-time traffic service for cellular phones in the future.