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Traffic Updates - are they ever accurate?

 

From the several recent GPS's capable of traffic updates that I had in the recent 5 years or so, I've got an impression that their information is inaccurate in about 90%. Whether it was Navigon (traffic from ClearChannel), or now Garmin (from Navteq) or even Tomtom with HD Traffic, about 4 times out of 5 the GPS shows the traffic where none exist, and fails to show something like permanent construction project on interstate highway going for 20 miles for many weeks, leaving one lane out of four (this was the last drop after which Tomtom was returned to the store). So I wonder, has the experience been different for others?

Same experience

I have had the samne experience. Unrelieable traffic info. I do not rely on it now.

my expirance in Baltimore/ Dc metro

I have a tomtom 1435 tm., and mine is always spot on we have taken it to sc and it was also excellent. I drive 65-80 miles a day round trip to and from work. Never had a problem at all always at the hight of rush hour!!

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friends are the family we choose

location location location

Remember lousy traffic service may not be the fault of the brand of PND you own or the service you subscribe but the sensors in the city or Hwy you do most of your driving.

I find the traffic service to be very good in the Tampa/Orlando area and the Miami are as well.

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Garmin 38 - Magellan Gold - Garmin Yellow eTrex - Nuvi 260 - Nuvi 2460LMT - Google Nexus 7

Traffic Updates

vrapp wrote:

From the several recent GPS's capable of traffic updates that I had in the recent 5 years or so, I've got an impression that their information is inaccurate in about 90%. Whether it was Navigon (traffic from ClearChannel), or now Garmin (from Navteq) or even Tomtom with HD Traffic, about 4 times out of 5 the GPS shows the traffic where none exist, and fails to show something like permanent construction project on interstate highway going for 20 miles for many weeks, leaving one lane out of four (this was the last drop after which Tomtom was returned to the store). So I wonder, has the experience been different for others?

I have found that in my area (New Orleans and Baton Rouge), Navteq traffic is terrible. It has never alerted me of any traffic reports or road closures. The few times it has reported a delay, the delay either wasn't there anymore or was so insignificant that a reroute would have just not made any sense. But ever since I purchased a Clear Channel subscription for traffic updates (in addition to the free Navteq subscription), I have had a much better experience. I find Clear Channel's traffic updates are always accurate (I had to learn that the hard way by not listening to it on several occasions), and it always notifies me of road closures due to construction, and there is a lot of that going on in my area. That being said, I have seen other posters on this forum say that Clear Channel also does nothing for them in their area. It all depends on how much your local radio stations update the traffic information that is sent out to the FM traffic receivers, like the ones on our nuvis. I just so happen to live in an area that has reliable radio stations that offer Clear Channel traffic and keep it up to date. I did not know that ahead of time, so I took a chance by purchasing the Clear Channel subscription in addition to the free Navteq subscription that came with the Garmin. But I'm glad I did though, it turned out to be a wise investment.

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Garmin Nuvi 3490lmt, 765t with Lifetime maps and Clear Channel traffic

Pittsburgh Area Traffic

With the 765T and Zumo 665 I have had good FM traffic reporting by Navteq, when I can receive it. With all the hills around here getting reception north of the city is the problem.

So I added XM traffic and weather to my Zumo 665. It turns out with XM I may always have reception but there apparently is never a traffic problem any where. All routes are always green in every city I've driven in. Whether your sitting still in a 5 mile backup or not.

So now I wonder if the new 3D or digital 3D traffic by Navteq has any better reception and/or reporting???

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Zumo 665, (2) Nuvi 765Ts & 1450LMT | 2005 Harley Road King, Black Cherry Pearl / Black Pearl

ClearChannel Good

In the New York City and Long Island area, ClearChannel FM traffic has been very good. Every time the road is closed ahead, I have been warned enough ahead of time to take an alternate route. I expected traffic info only for interstate and other limited-access roads, but it has been available on 4-lane state roads also.

Sometimes the info is stale and it shows a problem that has already been solved, but that is acceptable because they haven't missed the big problems at all.

My area is one of the largest traffic problem areas in the US, and GPS traffic is only one of several tools I use. I am more than satisfied with ClearChannel.

dobs108 smile

Use Waze

I agree that the traffic info is hardly accurate that's why I use an app for my iPhone called "Waze". It's a GPS but users can list traffic reports and accidents and cops hiding on Highways etc and the info pops up right on your screen....I like that much better because you're getting the info first hand from fellow users. I believe the app is free too....but there is some kind of in app upgrade available...I am in no way affiliated with this app just thought it was a good idea and might help some of you. Here's a link if anyone cares...http://www.waze.com/

...

In New York City area, NavTeq traffic is decent. In DC area, NavTeq kind of sucks, but Clear Channel is superb, especially during rush hour.

One oddity is that the traffic on your route sometimes "disappears" for a minute before a new update comes in with a different traffic level.

Traffic for my Garmin iPhone app

I've recently been using the Garmin USA onboard app for my iPhone. i purchase the traffic option and it is vastly superior to the clear channel traffic for my nuvi 760. Most times it is accurate to less than a quarter mile in indicating where a traffic problem starts and stops. I'm using here in the SF Bay Area.

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Nuvi 760 Nuvi 2598 LMT Garmin Streetpilot Onboard for iPhone

I'm in MA, and I have both

I'm in MA, and I have both the Navteq free subscription and the extra cost Clear Channel subscription running on my 2595. The coverage is very good and it is usually quick to report delays and clear them when they are gone. That said, it is more up to date during rush hour(s) and near major towns and cities along the interstate. It also seems to be better at reporting problems when the weather is bad: ice, snow, rollovers, accidents all seem current with what the radio is reporting. Between the two subsciptions there is usually a good signal. When I have monitored the channel table (hidden menu item) and status screen, I've confirmed it does a good job seeking out another station when needed. It's also very clear that a better antenna would provide better service. When I string the power cable out along the bottom of the windshield, the signal improves dratically.

Finally, I think the new 3D traffic is much better than whatever was on my previous 255. Not perfect, but acceptable IMO.

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"Primum Non Nocere" 2595LMT Clear Channel and Navteq Traffic

More often than not ....

More often than not I'll hear "Traffic Ahead" just as I nearly come to a stop in that traffic in the Philadelphia, PA area.

.

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. Nuvi 2460LMT, Zumo 550, Beltronics Pro 500 radar detector with GPS built in, includes RLC info. Uconnect 430N (Garmin) built into my Jeep. .

Seattle area

Anybody have info on reception for the greater seattle area?
Also, is it possible to use clearchannel on auto gps like the chrysler 430n that uses garmin. I tried to look at the website but didn't gain much info on the use or install to garmins.

traffic receiver

robert5733 wrote:

...Also, is it possible to use clearchannel on auto gps like the chrysler 430n that uses garmin. I tried to look at the website but didn't gain much info on the use or install to garmins.

Garmin devices are receiving traffic info through special version of power cable. Examples:
https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?pID=68325
https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?pID=104181

If you have stand-alone GPS unit just check which cable can be used with your model. There is quite few cables and they are not exchangeable, so they must be compatible with device.

If you have built-in unit than try to ask at dealership where you bought car. But often those built-in units are different and standard Garmin accessories will not work with them.

IMHO

IMHO, the traffic feature is totally useless. As others have said, either the warning is incorrect or no warning.

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Bob: My toys: Nüvi 1390T, Droid X2, Nook Color (rooted), Motorola Xoom, Kindle 2, a Yo-Yo and a Slinky. Gotta have toys.

I agree

I have 3490LMT adn Sirius in the car and sometimes they both are in total disagreement.

Works for Me

My only source of traffic info for me when travelig is the Mark 1 Eyeball. Works every time!

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Tuckahoe Mike - Nuvi 3490LMT, Nuvi 260W, iPhone5

GPS + Ears

Tuckahoemike wrote:

My only source of traffic info for me when travelig is the Mark 1 Eyeball. Works every time!

And tune in to the local traffic radio, they usually have updates before anyone else.

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