Toyota connects navigation systems to the cloud

June 27, 2013 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
A new traffic information system for Toyota drivers blends a variety of parameters including vehicle location data, current speed, road conditions and even disasters. The concurrent utilization of these data helps optimizing routes and travel times.

The "Big Data Traffic Information Service" gathers traffic flow data from several telematics services. These swarm data are collected, stored and enriched by contributed data from specific commercial user groups such as emergency services or forward agencies. From all these data a live traffic flow map is generated and made accessible to users. The purpose of the service is to improve overall traffic flow and enable trade-specific navigation services. In addition, the service is designed to enable faster emergency services in the case of catastrophic events such as earthquakes. Besides Toyota drivers, also subscribers of Toyota's G-BOOK telematics service for smartphones can access these data and use them to optimize their travel route.

This cloud-based service allows the use of traffic information gathered by Toyota and provides information on routes and traffic density on specific trajectories. All data are fed into the in-car navigation systems, but they also can be accessed through computers, tablets or smartphones. The service displays a great variety of additional information from the authorities; it also displays the location of emergency services and vehicles. Users can add their own data.

Information about facilities owned or operated by local governments and businesses and locations of commercial vehicles can be shown on the map, while information and images can be submitted by users via smartphones.

In disaster situations, information about evacuation sites, shelters, and other facilities can be shown, with the location of rescuers (equipped with smartphones) and emergency and relief vehicles also indicated on the map.

To facilitate damage assessment and relief efforts during times of emergency, rescue personnel can submit damage information and make relief requests via smartphone, with this information being shown along with T-Probe traffic information, route history, and hazard maps provided by local governments.

At other times, the service can be used for traffic and logistics systems. Suitable processing of T-Probe traffic information enables map-based route planning for effective guidance to multiple destinations,