First real-time traffic service for driverless car localisation

By on 9 August, 2017

Mapping company HERE Technologies claims to have created the first traffic service that utilises aggregated vehicle sensor data from competing car brands.

The new HERE Real-Time Traffic service is a global service that integrates live vehicle sensor data from millions of sensors aboard Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz vehicles with traffic probe information, resulting in significantly higher accuracy and more precise information about traffic conditions.

In 2015, HERE Technologies was purchased by consortium of leading automotive companies, comprising the German-owned carmakers Audi, BMW and Daimler. Since then it has been making headlong progress towards providing the maps that will support autonomous vehicles.

HERE Real-Time Traffic will soon be available as a commercial offering in more than 60 countries. Compared to other solutions on the market from the likes of Google Maps and TomTom, HERE claims to offer significant improvements in traffic flow data, especially on arterial roads.

HERE Real-Time Traffic integrates live vehicle sensor data from millions of sensors aboard Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz vehicles with HERE’s established traffic probe data.

For more than 30 of the countries where HERE Real-Time Traffic is available, the service also provides incident information with features such as Traffic Safety Warning. Aided by new hard-braking sensor data HERE is now processing, this feature now allows more relevant and timely notifications to the vehicle.

“This is the world’s first traffic service to aggregate live rich vehicle sensor data from competing car brands and it represents a major step by HERE to make driving safer and more efficient for people everywhere,” said Ralf Herrtwich, Senior Vice President Automotive at HERE Technologies. “While it helps drivers making informed decisions behind the wheel today, it also moves us closer to realising our vision of a live representation of the road environment needed for both advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and self-driving applications.”

HERE Real-Time Traffic is made possible by collecting millions of GNSS data points every day and leverages over 100 different probe and incident sources. Now, HERE is also integrating data from millions of Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz cars, with the fleet size expected to further grow during 2018 and beyond. To further enrich the service, HERE is concurrently expanding the population of commercial vehicles from which it gathers conventional probe data.

HERE Real-Time Traffic provides information about traffic conditions to drivers and can also be ingested by vehicle ADAS applications. The service is already widely used by ride-hailing companies, cities, road transport agencies, logistics companies, and air quality analytics specialists.

The enhanced HERE Real-Time Traffic is the first of the four vehicle-sourced data services HERE announced last year to be commercially available. The company is also on track to deliver the platforms known as HERE Hazard Warnings, HERE Road Signs and HERE On-Street Parking. Together, they might go a long way towards realising Australia and New Zealand’s  ambitious new vision for driverless vehicles.

HERE states that these services will support the automotive industry’s broader market introduction of advanced driver assisted systems and, eventually, truly autonomous driving solutions.

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