Realtime Traffic Info: Coming to a GPS near you

It’s been a long time coming, but Geosmart and the AA will start transmitting traffic data via coded FM radio messages from next week. NBR has some details, but basically any device capable of receiving the signals (and licensed to do so) can tell you what the traffic is like nearby.

The first device out of the block will be from Navman. I’ve had, just politely, mixed experience with Navman, but have been told that the new batch is greatly improved.

I’m really interested to know if the system will use the NZTA‘s new occupancy sensors. If you’re observant (like me), you’ll have noticed inductance loops buried every km or so all over Auckland’s motorways. Look carefully next time: they look like a grid of cuts in the road, and are often connected to a little junction box sitting on top of the median barrier. These sensors will give awesome, granular info on every part of the motorway system. Unfortunately I’m guessing they’re not ready to go yet.

If you’re a codemonkey, you might be interested to know that NZTA plans to create an open API for the sensor information once it is up and running. Data mashups ahoy!

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  1. @Anonymous: I can't see why not. Geosmart requires a license to use, but I'd hope Google will reach an agreement. In any case, they should at least be able to use NZTA's feeds for Motorway data.

  2. Hi folks
    GeoSmart will will be phasing in a number of services and data inputs over the coming months. The first service is the AA Roadwatch site where you can view all incidents, incidents by region and also future events as opposed to current events, which is a great opportunity for some forward planning before a trip.

    All of the current traffic data is also available on AA Maps where it can be used in conjunction with generating turn by turn driving directions.

    GeoSmart is working with a wide range of inputs including feeds from NZ Police, NZTA, many councils throughout New Zealand and several additional sources which will be enabled shortly.

    Navman is first off the block with RDS-TMC which allows you to be alerted to incidents on your route, near your route, or all incidents in your area. This data is currently being transmitted in Auckland, with Wellington and Christchurch due to go live within a few days. Other areas will be following soon.

  3. I'm exhibiting and showing off AA Traffic at the Small Business Expo in Christchurch starting tomorrow and going through till Friday afternoon at the Convention Centre.

    If you are in the area and would like to know more come and see me on the stand.

  4. The new Navman devices are starting to appear in shops. I haven't looked around for the cheapest prices but here's an idea:
    Navman MY55 $538 – Comes with traffic turned on.
    Navman MY50 $447 – Comes with traffic hardware but you need to buy an unlock key.
    Navman MY30 $346 – You can buy an external traffic module (can't see this on the website)

  5. Found the external traffic module in Australia:
    Navman TMC Traffic Kit AU $142
    This is the same hardware, but you'll need a key for the NZ traffic data so best to wait for the NZ version to appear.

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