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Tesla: please use Google Maps for traffic-based navigation

Discussion in 'Model S: User Interface' started by onasj, Jan 5, 2015.

  1. onasj

    onasj Member

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    How could our most-advanced-cars-ever manage to use Google maps for the maps appearance, but NOT use Google Maps's outstanding navigation to actually calculate a route and advise traffic?

    For this morning's commute, I had my phone running Google Maps side-by-side with the P85D's built in nav. The comparison was revealing: the built-in nav consistently made bad choices, even when both systems seemed to be aware of the same traffic, while Google Maps on my iPhone never made an obvious bad recommendation. It was almost comical because both apps displayed the same maps with the same appearance and same traffic coloring, but one app seemed like it was using a 5-year-old to do that actual routing.

    Overall the built-in nav routes would have added more than 25% time to my commute, until I was about 50% done with the commute and only then did the built-in system converge on the Google Maps solution. I've been driving this commute for 15 years, so I'm pretty sure I know the optimal Monday morning winter season commute route, and it is virtually identical to the Google Maps route. As a bonus, the current Google Maps system gives you real-time-updated alternative route choices all along your route, showing how many minutes faster or slower each alternative route is, and allows you to switch routes simply by clicking on these "4 min faster" (for example) buttons.

    Tesla: please consider changing to Google Maps not just for the shell appearance of the nav app, but for the actual navigation too.

    Thank you!
     
    • Like x 1
  2. rlang59

    rlang59 Member

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    Since this isn't an official Tesla site make sure you send your request to the ownership@ email address.
     
  3. GreenT

    GreenT Member

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    A) Maybe it's a problem with politics? Google / Android vs. Apple Iphone?

    B) I gave up on the ownership@ email address long ago after getting no replies to various matters.
     
  4. N4HHE

    N4HHE Member

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    I suspect the answer is that to get navigation technology 4 or 5 years ago when Tesla had to start the only option was to license from Garmin. The little 3D navigation display and spoken guidance seems to be Garmin Navigon. As a result this product is updated exactly no more and no less than however much money Tesla is willing to throw at Garmin.
     
  5. pgiralt

    pgiralt Active Member

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    Another part of it I'm sure is that they want Navigation to work even if there is no 3G connectivity to the car. Can't do that with Google Maps alone.
     
  6. scottm

    scottm Active Member

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    ..but while there IS 3G connectivity available, maybe the nav should default to google, and if / when 3G goes away, or google stops providing nav (HA!) the system falls back to Garmin as a backup plan B.
     
  7. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    Tesla uses Google Maps for the actual maps and traffic data on the center console, but uses their own routing mechanism. That's why it says "Maps by Google, Navigation by Tesla" or something to that effect in the corner of the map. You're seeing the difference between Google's and Tesla's route calculation. I agree, clearly they often arrive at different solutions. I don't know what Tesla is prioritizing that Google is not. Elevation changes? Optimizing for lower speed roads (and thus higher range)? Hard to say.

    If there's no network, Garmin (Navigon) handles the maps (and maybe the routing? It's unclear.).
     
  8. castor

    castor Member

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    That would be nice, but Tesla would have to pay for two Navigation services, don't think Tesla will use Google unless they include a offline mode.
     
  9. scottm

    scottm Active Member

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    Google is free.

    Tesla pays for one: Garmin.
     
  10. GreenT

    GreenT Member

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    If Tesla provides their own navigation, then why not offer a routing that includes Superchargers?
     
  11. castor

    castor Member

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    I haven't see a free service from Google that support Text to speech, do they support it?
     
  12. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    I was under the impression that, as of 6.0, they do prioritize routes with Superchargers. And rumors are the next release provides explicit information on distance until the next charger.
     
  13. hiroshiy

    hiroshiy Active Member

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    +1; Tesla or Garmin nav is not global so we in Japan still have no navigation at all! Use global components, Tesla... Please.

    However Google Maps has some issues as well. It doesn't seem to handle 3D crossings - like overpasses and underpass. It frequently goes into very narrow roads that Tesla can't drive without hitting the electrical poles or walls. It wanders around when stopped at a intersection. It doesn't handle two stacked roads - 1st level regular road, 2nd level expressway for example. So at least in Japan non Google 3rd party nav is much better quality but Google is better than nothing :)
     
  14. AmpedRealtor

    AmpedRealtor Active Member

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    If Tesla did this, it would be at the mercy of Google. I don't think that's a good idea. While far from perfect, Tesla is doing the right thing by handling its own traffic and routing. This gives Tesla the ability to offer options that Google doesn't. I'm sure Tesla is doing a lot of work on the navigation behind the scenes and it will be significantly improved soon.
     
  15. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    The traffic information is Google's. As noted previously, though, Tesla does their own routing using that information.
     
  16. ojee99

    ojee99 Onno

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    Actually, Google now *does* support offline maps and thus navigation.
     
  17. Todd Burch

    Todd Burch Electron Pilot

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    This is the first software release that uses traffic-based routing. No doubt it has bugs. Hopefully they clean most of them up soon.
     
  18. bluenation

    bluenation Member

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    +1 to the OP

    nobody, and i mean nobody will come close to google maps when it comes to the quality of what they offer

    just ask apple.

    even if it means ceding control a bit to google, at least it wont drive their model S customers to mud roads....
     
  19. onasj

    onasj Member

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    Wow, one day later and two pages of replies... I love this forum :)

    I sent an email to [email protected]. Don't expect a reply but will post it if I get one.

    It's very hard to do better than Google. Free, crowdsourced (for road speed aka traffic), and constantly updated by very smart software engineers. No, it's no perfect, but after several side-by-side comparisons, it is quite a bit better at routing than the Tesla's nav system.

    The challenge with navigation systems is that they are like poker hands: having the second-best accessible nav system is not worth much. Everyone (with a smartphone) has access to Google Maps with very accurate traffic and very intelligent routing. If I'm in a rush to get to my destination, which I suspect most Tesla owners tend to be, then I will never use the second-best nav system available to me. Therefore, unless I forget my phone, I will never use TeslaNav over GoogleNav when navigation really matters.

    Which leaves me feeling a bit silly that my $$$ phone is outperforming my $$$,$$$, extremely tech-savvy car at an activity that is very central to driving :)
     
  20. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    I understand the concern, but Tesla can likely never cede the routing to Google. Right now they're not doing a ton with it, but they want to eventually be able to route along (Super)chargers, include elevation changes, take into account windspeeds, and all kinds of other metrics that Google simply doesn't care about for their routing mechanism. By simply tackling the basic routing now, Tesla can add these other features into the calculations at a later time.

    Clearly they have a lot of work to do, but I don't think handing the routing over to Google is the right avenue to take, either.
     

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