FEATURE REQUEST: INCREASE TRAFFIC HORIZON TO COVER THE ENTIRE LENGTH OF THE JOURNEY (PLEASE VOTE) — TomTom Community

FEATURE REQUEST: INCREASE TRAFFIC HORIZON TO COVER THE ENTIRE LENGTH OF THE JOURNEY (PLEASE VOTE)

Nch1Nch1 Posts: 4 [Apprentice Traveler]
edited January 2019 in TomTom Services
Once upon a time the TomTom traffic horizon was available for the entire journey length, with the routing algorithm constantly pruning and tweaking the entire route throughout - the result was by far the best SatNav experience bar none.

Quite some time ago, TomTom reduced this horizon down to around 100km, completely hobbling the device for anything other than short trips. Rumour has it this was originally done because their servers could not handle the traffic during a snow storm back in 2010, and they never recovered. They cynic in me says this was part of their plan to introduce SIM cards and unlimited traffic data in later units - and to keep a lid on the data costs agreed with Vodafone.

The reduced horizon adds, for myself at least, around 1-1.5 hours journey time over a 800km trip (one I have done many times). It also leads to many more last minute re-routing changes which now need to be larger (as opposed to being smaller if they had been made earlier on in the journey). The small traffic horizon also creates a funnelling effect around the jam periphery - there are more motorists more densely packed around a smaller periphery that suddenly need re-routing, than if they had all be individually re-routed just a bit earlier on in their journeys; this often results in an 'out of the frying pan and into the fire' experience as too many people take the same last minute re-route on the periphery of the jam, creating more jams on the re-routes themselves.

The reduced traffic horizon makes it feel how driving used to be many many years ago - unpleasant and very frustrating. Which was never the case after TomTom first introduced HD Traffic with an unlimited traffic horizon.

There are some (possible?) solutions available to TomTom if their servers cant handle it or the SIM data costs are too high:

- Only allow unlimited traffic horizon when TomTom is connected to a phone via bluetooth (it can then use the phones data plan)
- Charge users an additional fee to access the unlimited traffic horizon
- Just take the hit and give your users the best traffic solution there is and make the unlimited horizon available to everyone with a software update.

Personally I’d be happy with any of the options above, the advantage of a larger horizon is so significant; though I can imagine a lot of upset customers with the first two options.

In this day and age, there isn’t much to differentiate one Satnav from the other. But a decent Traffic service is the real killer (for me its almost the only thing I look at) - get this right, and many other little things will be forgiven if, ultimately, your customers arrive at their destinations as fast as possible and with the least frustration.

So, if like me, you would like TomTom to reintroduce the Unlimited Traffic Horizon, please vote with the little thumbs-up button below and maybe we can all start to enjoy driving just a little bit more again.

Comments

  • MegalosMegalos Posts: 6,055
    Superusers
    In general, I'm in favor of a larger traffic radius. But especially for closed roads (as they won't disappear usually). Sometimes we need to make a decision between two major routes in an early stage, where, once taken one of them, it's almost impossible to switch to the other one.
  • RGM71RGM71 Posts: 379 [Supreme Trailblazer]
    Me too. While other navigators which are using TomTom Traffic info too can do this also, I see no logical reason wherefore 'Mr. Navigator himself' - TomTom - can't make this possible. No matter if a traffic jam that is two or three hours driving away perhaps is solved at the ttime you reach that location. :)
  • afconeafcone Posts: 14 [Legendary Explorer]
    I think there's a relatively easy compromise here. We know that the TomTom traffic algorithm builds into it an expectation of when it thinks delays will be cleared. So perhaps we could stick to the current 100-150km radius for all jams, but then extend that radius by the same again for those incidents (major accidents, road closures) where it is estimated that the problem will still be there in 2-3 hours time. That would solve a lot of the issues for longer journeys whilst at the same time not markedly increasing data usage / server capacity.
  • Met-MannMet-Mann Posts: 51 [Master Traveler]
    I have asked to show all traffic messages on the whole journey for many years already, but Tomtom never listen and understand their customers. Sygic calculates the delay time for the whole trip and never has problems to get traffic info, if live services doesn't work on Tomtom devices and Go apps. But, Sygic doesn't run stable and the app crashes many time with a frozen screen.
  • AsprinAsprin Posts: 271 [Supreme Pioneer]
    @Met-Mann,

    Why would you need that??

    TomTomGO gives you the traffic in an 1 hour drive window.

    To know what the traffic will be like 5 hours away is an utter waste of time.
    By the time you get that point in your drive traffic conditions would of changed by then.

    If you drive from Bremen to Brussels which is around 500km's
    You start out at 9:00 in the morning.
    Knowing you will run into lots of traffic on and off on the A1 to Munster.
    Traffic conditions are always changing by the time you get to Brussels some 5 hours later the problems on the road are not there.

    So what help would it be to know what the traffic conditions are in Brussels a 9:00 in the morning when I am nowhere near it at the time I start driving.

    I thing knowing the traffic conditions 1 hour before I get into Brussels would be more important than 5 hours earlier.
  • MegalosMegalos Posts: 6,055
    Superusers
    Hi Asprin, what about long-term road closures? I agree that traffic jams might have changed by the time you're there, but road closures typically not.
  • AsprinAsprin Posts: 271 [Supreme Pioneer]
    @Megalos,

    The key world here is long term.

    They are clearly mark and if you are driving on roads where you travel all the time you know about them.

    I travel to the Ardennes area every spring and summer.
    There is a bridge they have been working on for over 2 years now.

    Coming back out of the Ardennes area heading north you have to cross over this bridge.

    The GPS is telling you to take the exit just before the bridge.
    Well there were 2 cars in front of me last time that took this exit.
    I stayed and it took me about 15 to 20 mins to get past this constructions site.
    What do I run into are the 2 cars that took the exit and now coming back on the highway just in front of me.
    Always taking what the GPS tells you does not make it any faster.
    You just drive longer to get back to where you need to be in the first place.
    Plus spend more fuel than is needed.
    Most time they are on back roads you can no drive fast on.

    Plus if you drive around the ring in Antwerp and take what the GPS tells you to do in regards to traffic you will wind up adding 45 to an hour more trying to get home or get to work.

    I know because I drove on the Antwerp ring for over 7 years.

    Having the traffic function on your GPS a lot of times does not help at all.
    Staying right where you are and dealing with the stop and go in most cases get you home or to work is much fast.

    I tried all the so called traffic messages that tell me I can save 15 to 20 mins by taking these route.
    It does not work at all.

    Reason is very simple you have to deal with all the local traffic that has no need to take the ring to get to work or drive home.
    Plus there are traffic lights on ever intersection and the speed is max 50km.

    That's if you can ever drive 50km most times you are lucky to drive 10km with all the extra traffic on the local roads and traffic lights to deal with.
  • TotobelTotobel Posts: 79 [Prominent Wayfarer]
    Asprin624 wrote:
    @Met-Mann,

    Why would you need that??

    TomTomGO gives you the traffic in an 1 hour drive window.

    To know what the traffic will be like 5 hours away is an utter waste of time.
    By the time you get that point in your drive traffic conditions would of changed by then.

    If you drive from Bremen to Brussels which is around 500km's
    You start out at 9:00 in the morning.
    Knowing you will run into lots of traffic on and off on the A1 to Munster.
    Traffic conditions are always changing by the time you get to Brussels some 5 hours later the problems on the road are not there.

    So what help would it be to know what the traffic conditions are in Brussels a 9:00 in the morning when I am nowhere near it at the time I start driving.

    I thing knowing the traffic conditions 1 hour before I get into Brussels would be more important than 5 hours earlier.
    Its almost true.
    1h30 for traffic is enough most of the time, when the highway density is important, as in the region you describe.
    But when a tunnel is jammed in the Alps, you might want to know earlier as the alternative might not be within the 1h30 radius.

    The same goes for closed roads. In mountains it can be a disaster if you don't know it soon enough.
  • Met-MannMet-Mann Posts: 51 [Master Traveler]
    If driving from Dortmund to Hamburg, I could choose between A1 passing Bremen or A2/A7 passing Hannover.
    I have to decide between these two alternative routes early. A 80 km or 150 km radius is not enough for this.
    Another example for me is Regensburg-Hannover/Hamburg passing Leipzig (A93/A9/A14/A2/A7) or Kassel (A3/A7). The competitors show all traffic incidents on the whole route. Why Tomtom does not?
  • TotobelTotobel Posts: 79 [Prominent Wayfarer]
    Why is easy : their hardware is weak. On the mydrive app on smartphone you get the whole thing...
  • Met-MannMet-Mann Posts: 51 [Master Traveler]
    Even the Go mobile app for smartphones has limited TomTom Traffic.
    Tomtom never tell the reason, why.
  • RGM71RGM71 Posts: 379 [Supreme Trailblazer]
    TomTom already told several times the reason: they're showing traffic incidents that can be reached within approximately one hour driving. In an average ('normal') situation, most traffic jams should be (almost completely) gone within the hour.

    The issue is that most of us, including me, don't find that a valid reason. Like already mentioned above, there are plenty reasons where traffic info about the whole route - from beginning to end, no matter the distance - is much more valuable than traffic info in a radius of just one hour, especially when it concerns road closures.
    That there are also situations where there's no additional value at all shouldn't be the reason that only traffic info within an one hour radius driving is shown and taken into account with determining the fastest route.

    See picture: part of the A60 in the red circle - which is about 12 km - is closed for months now (see MyDrive and this site; road opens again at 31.10.2017 13:00). When starting to drive the blue route, TomTom will let you take a detour when the roadclosure comes within the Traffic horizon. However, this detour causes about 20-25 minutes extra traveltime.
    When TomTom took this closure into account at the starting point, then the fastest route would be just 50 seconds more than the route which is now calculted as being the fastest.
    This is certainly not a unique situation.


    30fc345f-6e48-40e5-8c07-eb38255b79f7.jpg
  • [Gelöschter Benutzer][Gelöschter Benutzer] Posts: 5,321 [Supreme Navigator]
    RGM71 wrote:
    See picture: part of the A60 in the red circle - which is about 12 km - is closed for months (see MyDrive). When starting to drive the blue route, TomTom will let you take a detour when the roadclosure comes within the Traffic horizon. However, this detour causes about 20-25 minutes extra traveltime.
    Start and destination please.
  • RGM71RGM71 Posts: 379 [Supreme Trailblazer]
    Thanks for your note, EthoZ! It made me realise I forgot the fact that earlier this month, when I drove that route including the detour, the extra traveltime of the detour was increased by some traffic jam on the detour. Probably from other drivers who had to avoid the closure also. ;)

    Without that traffic jam, according to TomTom the detour would take approximately 14 minutes extra (see both pictures; start is at A60 on Belgian-German border; end is Eisenschmitt (center)).

    Let's assume that in my ealier post there's no traffic jam in the detour avoiding the A60. Then the pink route in that post is at least 13 minutes faster (which is 50 seconds 'extra' minus 14 minutes detour).

    3665b387-e321-4385-8bb5-1b19101a22a2.jpgba561b15-31be-4929-9915-0af6441f3208.jpg
  • [Gelöschter Benutzer][Gelöschter Benutzer] Posts: 5,321 [Supreme Navigator]
    RGM71 wrote:
    30fc345f-6e48-40e5-8c07-eb38255b79f7.jpg
    I would like to have start and destination of this route and not any other.
  • PinoooPinooo Posts: 19 [Renowned Trailblazer]
    You could try from Eindhoven Centre to Bitburg Centre for instance.

    For longer journeys, like holidays, you could try Eindhoven Centre to Saarbrücken Centre. However, this example is a bit tricky, because of:
    • Chances of heavy traffic on all routes (except the part from Verviers to Germany leading to the very calm A60).
    • The detour on local roads takes nearly as much time as the detour passing Venlo-Koblenz (German A61-A48-A1) or Luxembourg
    From experience, if you drive more south along the Dutch A2, it will pick up de road closure of the German A60 in time to suggest a detour along Heerlen (A76) and Aachen (A4). However, my Go1005 sometimes just went for the route passing Liege and A60 anyway and have the local detour. Probably due to traffic on the detour route that passes Aachen or Luxembourg.
  • [Gelöschter Benutzer][Gelöschter Benutzer] Posts: 5,321 [Supreme Navigator]
    Pinooo wrote:
    ..., this example is a bit tricky....
    Actual route (Best to Eisenschmitt):

    2762ae45-cd29-4d16-812c-b348eebbe89c.jpg
    f0767adb-23fd-44e3-a080-24274e5bf7af.jpg
    238e074e-78fd-4c52-b5e0-d79f593f46da.jpg8 minutes or 24 km, who really cares?
  • RGM71RGM71 Posts: 379 [Supreme Trailblazer]
    Some remarks:

    1. The route calculation in last screenshots is with a different starting position: all traffic along the whole route of approx. 250 km is known. Normally when driving such a distance, with TomTom devices this is not the case.
    Personally I guess almost nobody will fool their device (or is able to do that) and let it 'think' it's at another location than it is in reality, just to check traffic along the whole route (but maybe I'm completely wrong). And besides, this only is possible when the whole route is no longer than about 250-300 km.

    2. When there's a heavy traffic jam at the first part of the route - between Eindhoven and Sittard - combined with the closed roadsegment that is about 210 km further suddenly the pink route becomes much faster though it is about 20 km longer. Not some minutes faster, but significant faster. Because in the screenprints there is no such situation, the calculation shows other results. But that's exactly the reason wherefore an increased traffic horizon would be great.

    3. In my opinion, who really cares is irrelevant and certainly not my/our business; it's up to the user if he really cares or not.
  • TotobelTotobel Posts: 79 [Prominent Wayfarer]
    Those are really good examples
    it shows how bad it can be in regions where the density of road and alternative isn't that high.

    It's clear closed road should be know for the whole trip.
    For traffic, it's more debatable
  • Nch1Nch1 Posts: 4 [Apprentice Traveler]
    Another good example: driving from Lisbon to the coast on the Algarve.

    TomTom will route you up the periphery of the forest fires in the Monchique area before dangerously routing you around the periphery of the fire zone.

    If the traffic horizon covered the entire journey from the beggining of the journey, you would be deviated and routed away from the start.

    Luckily, knowing the existence of this limitation with TomTom I used another satnav app for this journey. Let's hope others don't get caught out.
Sign In or Register to comment.

Who's Online in this Category0