My brief impressions of Navigon (with Traffic addon) around Toronto

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Xaximus, Sep 21, 2010.

  1. Xaximus macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010
    I've been meaning to share my impressions of using Navigon over the last 6-8 weeks in and around Toronto. I'm not much of a writer and will aim to keep this brief.

    I've been using Navigon's Traffic addon from day one, which is supposed to consider traffic information when calculating routes. I regularly make a 150km (~93-mile) trip to the Niagara region, which is a fairly linear and predictable drive, but also use Navigon for driving around Toronto (I'm fairly new here).

    Overall, I've been extremely disappointed with Navigon. More often than not, Navigon actually seems to make my drives LONGER than they would be if I just stuck to my usual routes. I can only make that judgement on routes that I'm familiar with, which is the bulk of my GPS usage. A big part of the allure of Navigon for me was the traffic updates, in the hopes that they would direct me around congestion.

    A frequent problem with Navigon is that it will recalculate the route based on traffic information without updating you if your current instruction changes. For example, I have several times been prepared to turn when the software adjusts for traffic, only to discover that my instructions have changed and I'm supposed to go straight instead. The software makes no announcement to correct the current instruction, so you need to keep an eye on it when it recalculates the route.

    Navigon seems to have no concept of traffic trends or history. It could just be my experience, but it seems to only consider traffic information at any given moment in time, which is almost completely useless. The other night, my estimated driving time steadily increased by about 50 minutes in a 15-20 minute period. On one occasion, on the 401 in Toronto, the estimated time was about an hour later than it turned out to be. This is especially shocking when considering how much traffic information Navigon must have access to for a city such as Toronto... I just don't get it. If it's that bad and unusable in Toronto, I can't imagine it being worth the hassle or money anywhere else.

    I have not used any other GPS software to date, and am somewhat reluctant to roll the dice and spend more money after this experience. Here's hoping Navigon gets their act together and comes up with a more effective method of estimating traffic and adjusting routes accordingly.
  2. Randman macrumors 65816


    Jul 28, 2008
    Jacksonville, Fla
    Sounds like you need to set the parameters for routes under options.

    I've only had issues with Navigon in one place driving across the US. And that was a mixup in Myrtle Beach, SC, with a location on 17 Business instead of Highway 17.

    Otherwise, it is flawless.
  3. draz macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2010
    I feel your pain. Traffic in Toronto sucks... Literally.
    The GPS units have a lot of information to feed through and determine. But considering the amount of traffic everywhere it gets difficult at times.

    Although I know my way around Toronto without even looking at a map, I do find it handy to simply check Google Maps and turn the option on to Show Traffic, and observe the green, orange, and red lines.
    When it is red just go around it. Green is good =)

    But just don't look at it when you are on the road... that is no good. A bit hard to see the lines. Also with your cell data, Google is pretty much updating every few mins as traffic changes.

    Oh and also look out for the police since you aren't suppose to be using your phone in your car... LOL

    Don't forget too... Tune to 680AM, traffic every 10mins on the 1's... All the time everyday.
  4. Xaximus thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010
    I've checked and re-checked the route options. I'm not sure what the difference between fastest and "optimized" routes is, but I've tried them both. What made you think I needed to adjust those options? I'm glad you've had such great luck with it; I only wish I could say the same.

    Yeah, I take that to mean not actively playing with your phone though, not looking at it while it's mounted on the dashboard. That would be absurd otherwise... no one could use a GPS. I might check out Mapquest... it's free, and I'm not sure if it utilizes traffic information, but it's worth a shot.
  5. draz macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2010
    Mapquest is ok... But not sure about the traffic route planning that you want.

    But then again it is free.
  6. myMacRumors macrumors regular

    Aug 18, 2010
    Thanks for the Navigon traffic info around Toronto, Xaximus!

    At least it's better than TomTom (TomTom has no traffic coverage in Canada at this moment).

    Navigon's real-time traffic provider, INRIX, covers at least eight Canadian cities: Montreal, Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa, Quebec City, Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg.

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