In a recent blog entry, I talked about my desire to "integrate" GPS with tracking technology to be able to determine traffic speeds and re-route accordingly.
Well, who knew that just a few days later I would be watching TechTV and they would demonstrate a product that is very close to what I was looking for!
A company called ZipDash works with NexTel phones (with GPS option) and displays a map on the Nextel phone with color coded arrows to indicate the traffic speed (green, yellow, red). (I believe it's a Java app on the phone)
I mentioned in my blog that my "theoretical idea" of a P2P GPS traffic monitoring model would require users to have to "opt in" in order to receive traffic reports. Sure enough, ZipDash works on that principal. If you "opt in" to receiving ZipDash's traffic data, you must also let ZipDash track your cell phone location. Of course it is anonymous according to this quote from their website:
"Rest assured, the information we gather is completely anonymous. Nextel doesn't even allow us access to information such as your phone number. We don't ask you for personal information and we make protecting your privacy a top priority. "
It's only in California unfortunately. But this gives me hope that one day the New York/Connecticut Metro area will have it some day.
Here's the link to the TechTV show I saw:
TechTV - ZipDash - GPS & Cell Phone