The Atlantic, globally ranked 1639 on Alexa Worldwide, 542 for Alexa US ran a story that clearly gives some recognition for Nokia’s maps.
It’s a very interesting read and even shows some of Nokia NAVTEQ’s world crawlers in their NAVTEQ cars, and what life is like living in a hotel whilst you map out a particular city.
There’s about 200,000 USD worth of NAVTEQ stuff on the car. Panoramas are captured for the ‘Bing’ street view, two GPS antennae, three laptops and a “LIDAR system that shoots 64 lasers 360 degrees around the car to create 3D images”. The atlantic goes on to explain how this is used at Nokia, such as automatic extraction of street names, working out height/length of bridges etc.
The difficulty is apparently not the process itself, but that once you start one end, by the time you get to the other, you’ll need to go back to the beginning because the world changes with time. Unlike Apple’s prehistoric maps, Nokia wants to give you as up to date maps as possible. When I moved to Preston, my accommodation this year was on a new estate. But Nokia Drive was able to find it. I had things delivered to the property but the drivers using TOMTOM could not find it at all (it was also TomTom that got the uni driver lost last term which ended up having to get Nokia Drive out to save the day)
We learn that Nokia has something called a ‘living map’ that kinda knows what you’re looking for. if you search for ‘Blue Bottle Coffee’ in San Fran, you’ll also get suggestions of other venues that sell Blue Bottle. If only the POI was as innovative and comprehensive.
In response to a passerby who said “We’re so close to the day when you can put on VR goggles and literally just walk through the world, anywhere in the world.” Nokia and NAVTEQ are apparently close to making a map of the world that is a copy of the world.
Someone who used to work at NAVTEQ left in the comments their disappointment of having to work with Apple Map data, as well as saying “ I can truly say that this article just touches the tip of the iceberg.”.
Cheers M for the tip!