Skip to Content
Uncategorized

Getting Directions from Your Phone

June 1, 2004

Forget about asking for help at gas stations. Your cell phone is rapidly becoming a one-stop source of directions. Over the past year, several startups have launched services that send directions to your phone’s screen and provide a speech interface that reads them as you drive.

In most cases, these services require location information from a separate Global Positioning System receiver plugged into the phone. A lost driver dials up the service, which interprets a spoken description of his or her destination, calculates a route based on the GPS coordinates, and transmits directions back to the phone. New versions eliminate the external GPS receiver: gpware of Menlo Park, CA, plans to introduce a device this summer that includes a GPS receiver and cell-phone technology in a personal-digital-assistant-sized case that can be mounted on a car’s dashboard.

These direction finders are a big step up from the navigation hardware sold with some cars, which uses maps stored on CDs or DVDs that typically need to be changed when a driver visits a new area. And only about 10 percent of new vehicles sold in 2003 had such “onboard navigation” built in, says Phil Magney, principal analyst with the Telematics Research Group in Minnetonka, MN. That leaves plenty of room for “offboard navigation”-cell-phone systems.

The newer technology has advantages, says Magney. “It translates into lower cost compared to what you might buy in a car. It’s go-anywhere, meaning you can take it from your car to a rental car,” and you’re likely getting the most current data, he says. He predicts offboard navigation services will help boost the North American market for wireless in-car systems from $4.9 billion to $18 billion by 2010.

Deep Dive

Uncategorized

Investing in people is key to successful transformation

People-related factors like talent attraction and retention and clear top-down communication will determine whether your transformation progresses or stalls.

The way forward: Merging IT and operations

Digital transformation in any industry begins with bridging the gap between two traditionally separate teams.

Work reinvented: Tech will drive the office evolution

As organizations navigate a new world of hybrid work, tech innovation will be crucial for employee connection and collaboration.

be a good example concept
be a good example concept

Be a good example

"It was in the newspaper, but the towers fell the next day, and what I’d done was quickly lost."

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose WongIllustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.