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SERVICE: German ADAC launches GPS-based Traffic Jam reporting for Windows Mobile Smartphones
Posted by Arne Hess - on Thursday, 31.07.08 - 12:21:44 CET under 01 - General News - Viewed 21102x
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Also a kind of user generated content: The ADAC (Germanys biggest Automobile Association, similar to the AA in the U.K. or AAA in the USA) has a program where members can report traffic jams to the ADAC. So far, participating members had to report traffic jams via phone but now, the ADAC offers a Windows Mobile client where participating traffic jam reporters can press a button as soon as they reached a traffic jam and pressing the button again as soon as they left them. The ADAC will calculate the length and expected delay afterwards. This application works with all GPS-equipped Windows Mobile smartphones and data are transmitted via GPRS/UMTS.

The ADAC will afterwards match the received information with information from the Police and self-collected information and the traffic jam list can be accessed afterwards via phone, web or WAP.

While this is a great idea to enhance ADAC's "Staumelder" system, there is a real problem the ADAC should be aware of as nobody else: In Germany it's strictly forbidden to touch a mobile phone while operating a car, doesn't matter if you drive or standing still. In a recent judgment, a German court even banned the use of navigation software on mobile phones (while you are still allowed to use PMN's like TomTom because these devices are not mobile phones but PMNs (makes sense, no?)) as long as you are operating the car.
So if I touch my smartphone during my drive, even if I'm stuck in a traffic jam, I incur a penalty!

Nevertheless, I definitely like the idea to combine mobile data and GPS in such a smart way to make available services better. Unfortunately the law isn't that hip.

Cheers ~ Arne

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