When we are in a traffic jam we often open Google Maps or Sygic or Waze to see the traffic in real time and save a few minutes by taking a new, clearer path. When we travel to a new city we no longer go to the tourist office for a map but open our favorite GPS navigator app and find the ‘duomo’ at first sight. We are expert users. That’s why navigation apps no longer seduce us with words like real time or precision. The future should offer us more. Therefore we have shortlisted what news we can find now in the world of mapping to find friends, avoid traffic and locate anything we want for you.

1. ORDER AHEAD WHILE DRIVING

Some navigation apps strive not only to optimize the routes but to offer a complete experience for the users while they travel or commute such as having the possibility to see and compare petrol prices in the nearest gas stations, to find free parking spaces, to avoid accidents or to see the state of traffic.

All this useful information makes our daily travel more bearable, but if we could also use that time for personal benefits such as ordering food, that would be great. That is what somebody thought at Waze app, which has recently made an agreement with Dunkin Donuts to allow us purchasing coffee and doughnuts directly from Waze while we use it to drive to work. That means when we arrive to the store our order is ready to pick up.

This integration may be a faster way than simply using the breakfast brand’s own app. Presumably, we believe that it will use the ETA (estimated time of arrival) of the route we have chosen and notify the nearest store when we will arrive. Or so they should.

“It could be almost anything that a driver could order ahead and have ready for pick up,” said to Associated Press Jordan Grossman, head of Waze’s partnerships in North America. According to a Dunkin Donuts representative, the agreement made sense because both services are related to the time of the commuting, people drive to work and pick up a coffee and a doughnut on the way to the office.

2)  VR TO NAVIGATE IN A CITY

Walking in the city with a navigation app to meet friends, to find the new sports centre, to go to a grocery shop or just to walk around without getting lost are some of our daily activities. What could be more interesting than adding to them a bit of virtual reality? We are not suggesting anybody to go hunting Pokemons like crazy in the streets, again, but to find useful information on the way.

By viewing the city through the camera of the smartphone, the app Blippar draws lines on the ground with arrows that tell us which street to take to arrive to our destiny. It also shows floating titles over the monuments and shops and places useful information of the city around marked spots. It is a completely new way of exploring a city and having interesting information beautifully placed around. The possibilities are as novel as the technology Blippar uses, which replaces the GPS with a system of Urban Visual Positioning System.

“The accuracy of Urban Visual Positioning can take location-based AR to new levels of engagement, for example virtual departure boards in front of train stations, interactive guides in front of famous landmarks, or even a virtual menu hanging on the wall of a restaurant”, said the company in its website. The apps is still a beta version but it will be released soon

3) MORE WAYS OF TRANSPORT

Here is one of the most used navigation apps that was created by Nokia years ago and now has millions of users around the world. Its new alliance with Hyperloop will place its technology to their native app Virgin Hyperloop One. This app will soon include Hyperloop routes in its repertoire of transport options. As we know, Hyperloop is still a transportation prototype that is expected to reach 1200 kilometers or 700 mph per hour, but there is still no train built and running. So, why then is there an app that includes it?

According to the company, Hyperloop wants to start showing to the world what the trip will be like and prepare the navigation technology for it. It will not only be a navigation app but will also serve other services such as booking a trip or even booking a car with the integration of the Lyft transport app.

“Hyperloop is not just about A to B, it’s an end-to-end passenger experience,  that means no waiting at any point along the journey,” said in a statements Matt Jones, Virgin Hyperloop One’s SVP of Software Engineering. He also added: “Here shares our vision for optimizing travel. We will redefine the passenger experience by offering real time, on demand travel connecting hyperloop, other modes, and even indoor walking directions.”

We might wonder if Here will also integrate this experience in their app in the future. Stay tuned for it!

4) FIND YOUR FRIENDS AND THE PLACE TO GO AT THE SAME TIME

One of the most basic needs we have is to find people. When we try to find a physical store, it does not present so much challenges because it does not change its emplacement. However, people are in constant movement and it is difficult to find them in crowded places such as in city centers, bars, shopping areas or parks. That’s why the Wave Application app it is a great tool to find friends by sharing live locations on a private map in real time.

In Wave, group maps represent a new level of interaction between friends or relatives, because of the possibility of placing a meeting point on the map visible for all group members. In this way, when we are meeting our friends at a restaurant on Fridays we can see who is there if we are late, how long it takes us to arrive there using ETA, who is still at work and whether our friends have decided to go to other place. Wave also has a complete chat and millions of users worldwide.  

“There are no barriers for real time location services anymore, so our biggest challenge is to become an indispensable tool in all the smartphones users. That is why we are continuously developing new features to complete the user experience and applying H2H marketing approaches to better understand what our users need and do our best to give them those solutions” said Manuel de la Esperanza, CEO of Wave Application, in a statement.

What do you think of these options? For more information, stay tuned and discover the new features in the navigation and geolocation systems.

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