Waze

Derrick

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Waze is a free GPS application featuring turn-by-turn navigation, developed by the Israeli start-up Waze Mobile for mobile phones. It currently supports iOS, Android, Windows Mobile, Symbian, and BlackBerry.

Waze differs from traditional GPS navigation software as it is a community-driven application and learns from users' driving times to provide routing and real-time traffic updates. It is also free to download and use, as it gathers map data and other information from users who use the service. Additionally, people can report accidents, traffic jams, speed traps, police and can update roads, landmarks, house numbers, etc. As of January 2012, the software is in use by 12 million drivers worldwide.

Waze is available for download and use anywhere in the world, but some countries have a full basemap, whereas other countries still require users to record the roads and edit the maps. Currently Waze has a complete base map in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium, Israel (claimed to be the best map for that country), South Africa, Ecuador, (parts of) Argentina, and Panama, but the company has plans to make it available in other countries in Europe and elsewhere.

In addition to turn-by-turn voice navigation, real-time traffic, and other location-specific alerts, Waze simultaneously sends anonymous information, including your speed and location, back to its database to improve the service as a whole. This crowdsourcing allows the Waze community to report navigation and mapping errors and traffic accidents simply by running the app while driving. Waze uses cupcakes and other gaming conventions to further engage users, allowing users to drive over icons of cupcakes and other road goodies located in certain locations to earn points. The mini-games encourage more user involvement and competition, and that means more valuable road information for the users and the database where those details are otherwise slim or lacking.

In 2011, Waze Mobile updated the software to display real-time, community-curated points of interest, including local events such as as street fairs and protests.

Source: Wikipedia
 
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