Waze, the famous Israeli application of Community road guide (acquired by Google in 2013 to 1.3 billion US) is more interesting than ever. We had all heard about it a few years ago at a major advertising campaign and ( we talked about here in a podcast episode) , I had even used and it was a little forgotten at least for me. At a meeting in Montreal with a representative of Waze in January, I have restored his luck in the application, I even used during my recent return trip to Florida. Here is what emerged in a little more than 5000 kilometers of use.
Waze, what is it?
This is a mobile app that replaces the good old GPS and making road trips with Google Maps devoid of flavor! I told you that Waze is now owned by Google (since 2013), the application remains distinct Google Maps and so much the better. Note that Google Maps now incorporates the bigger traffic incidents from the Waze data in the cards.
If I used Google Maps my habit for car trips, and it is true that she made me save time by offering me a new path faster at times, Waze has the merit of keeping me informed of road hazards, in addition to all that. Indeed, based on the user community, Waze collects your position and your movements to estimate the time required and the circulation, fluid or not, on your route (Google also does with Maps). Where Waze gets interesting is that each user can report an obstacle in its path as a vehicle on the side of a police car, an accident or a sudden traffic jam. Each obstacle will then be displayed on the screen of the user who forces its way in one place and it will be able to confirm whether the obstacle is still present or not. It is even possible and encouraged to make changes to the map to reflect the truth by indicating road closures or new streets.
Collect points for every action you make! That is to say that for every obstacle you report for the cards you are editing and the kilometers you browse, you’ll earn points. What are these points you ask? When you reach certain levels you can choose new moods icons that will personalize your avatar. Some icons are hidden (must be found, as other surprises!) And some are reserved for people editing cards.
• Baby Wazer: Welcome to the world Wazer! You’re a baby until you had driven 160 kilometers (100 miles).
• Wazer Adult: Finally adult! Choose a custom mood for your Wazer.
• Wazer Warrior: You are in the top 10% of the province. Driving with a shield.
• Wazer Knight: You are in the top 4% of the province. You attack sword traffic.
• Wazer Royal: You are in the top 1% of the province. Roll stylish with a crown.
Roll with the constantly active phone can make us fear to overcome our data plan if it is restricted. Fortunately, there Waze goes easy on the use of our valuable data. Although I have traveled more than 5000 kilometers with the application, as I have done with more than one cell phone plan, I do not have details on the use. By cons, with my iPhone, I have needed only 66 MB (not with this device I have traveled 5000 km), while the Galaxy S7 (test coming soon) that I test, I used only 50.37 MB I’m not afraid for my consumption data. To optimize your data, you may be able to launch the application and set the destination on a Wi-Fi network before you leave; I’m just saying …
General use of Waze
Waze is used like a normal Google Maps or GPS, one chooses his destination and hop we go! the card can be used with two fingers to enlarge or shrink the view, as is usually done. Where Waze stands out is with small interesting additions which, put together, will greatly enhance the use.
• Ability to send a message with our estimated time of arrival. We can send the message via SMS, tweet, Facebook, email, hangouts …
• Voice recognition for interaction with the application. By default the option is disabled, but simply active in the settings.
• Color change to night mode / day depending on the time of day. I know Google Maps and some GPS do too, but I really like this feature and my good old GPS from 2005 does not automatically make it.
• calendar synchronization to notify you when the time to leave has arrived, based on the density of traffic on the route to take.
• The prices of nearby gas stations can be added to help you find the cheapest pump price. Integration with GasBuddy bring this functionality to the next level saw its huge community.
• Display of speed limits with the new version, only available in certain countries, including France and Belgium. (This was the main improvement I would have spoken!)
During my road trip to the United States during the 5000 km I met a ton of police cars and only one was not listed in Waze. Certainly many of them were no longer on site during my visit, but I’ve also seen many who were. It is certain that there are more users per km on American soil, but in our beautiful province, it is not uncommon (even very common) to cross a Wazer on the current trip! The more users who will use the service Waze, plus the application, its data and its accuracy will improve further. It’s like the old slogan of the Hygrade sausage: More people eat because they are fresher and are cooler because more people eat And just like the hot dog sausage, Waze is comforting and reassuring when we drove in another country – is what I have to draw a parallel between Waze and hot dog sausage me – like the new feature that allows the display of speed limits! To continue in the slogans, I like that Waze: Waze. Déjouons the traffic together.
Waze. Déjouons the traffic together. | I had lost the card, I found Waze!
After driving several days with Waze on my dashboard, I must admit that I created the habit and addiction. I even want to launch the application when I go to the corner store! There are some days on the way back I avoided the advice of the application which recommended me a different route than the one I’m used to take. He reinforced his choice even making me do a U-turn far enough on the road; still I did not listen and a little later I was caught in a traffic jam. It goes without saying that in the future I will pay more carefully to the advice of Waze. I’m not about to stop using Waze; watch me, I’ll be in the top of the charts of Wazers!