Verizon Wireless' VZ Navigator service is a location-based service (LBS) application that utilizes GPS technology and real-time information feeds. It is a custom application that you download onto your Blackberry.
- The new version of VZ Navigator offers customers the following features:
Traffic Integration â€“ Customers can access routes that are calculated using both historical and real-time reported traffic information. Historical information allows customers to see on average whether the traffic is impacted by traffic lights, heavy traffic or school zones.
Incident and flow information tells customers how traffic is flowing and includes details about reported accidents, disabled vehicles and congestion. VZ Navigator's historical data covers over 750,000 miles of roads in 48 states. The traffic tracking center continually monitors conditions along the customers' routes, sending proactive alerts to drivers about conditions ahead of them on their chosen routes. Detour options allow users to compare estimated times of arrival and conditions before selecting a new route.
- Gas Finder â€“ Provides customers with information on the location of gas stations close to their physical locations and even provides gas prices at many gas stations in the area. Once a customer selects a station, VZ Navigator can also provide turn-by-turn directions to the selected gas station.
- Local Movies and Events â€“ Customers can now search for show times, critics' ratings and other details for movies, concerts, plays, sporting events and other social events based on the physical location of their phones.
- 3D Perspective View - Enhances navigation by displaying maps from angles customers would see through car windshields, making it easier to visualize turn-by-turn directions.
- Weather - Provides current weather conditions and forecasts based on the physical location of the customer's phone without manually inputting an address.
I think the traffic information and gas prices is awesome. Those two things are going to be a great selling point and they nicely counter some of the features that at&t and Apple have included with the iPhone.
I'm not so sure about the movie information. I can't say I've ever been in the car, heading to a movie theatre, without first knowing what movie I intend to see.
The 3D perspective mapping is also great. It's not going to show you real life buildings but it does help you get your bearings and find out if some foolish engineer put a left-side off ramp on the highway for that exit coming up. I don't know how many times I have been screwed up by exit ramps being on the wrong side of the highway!