XM, a leading satellite radio service with more than 7.6 million subscribers, recently announced that its real-time XM NavTraffic satellite information service for GPS navigation will add six new markets, allowing XM NavTraffic subscribers in the U.S. to access the real-time traffic data service in 50 major North American markets, beginning March 31. For the first time, XM NavTraffic subscribers in the U.S. also will be able to view real-time traffic data in three Canadian cities.
The six new XM NavTraffic markets include: Fresno, Calif.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Montreal, Que.; Salt Lake City; Toronto, Ont.; and Vancouver, B.C. In addition, Portland, Ore., now has expanded coverage with traffic-flow data available allowing drivers to see how fast the traffic is moving.
XM NavTraffic feeds data on incidents, such as accidents and road construction, directly to a vehicle's GPS navigation system via XM's satellite pipeline. The driver is alerted to these blockages through the navigation screen, allowing him or her to route around a jam before getting caught in traffic. Where available, XM NavTraffic also provides information that allows users to view an overlay of color-coded traffic-flow information, indicating the average speed of travel along the driver's planned route. The traffic data is aggregated by NAVTEQ Traffic from data sources that include police and emergency services, commercial traffic data providers, road sensors, traffic cameras, eyewitness reports and real-time aircraft surveillance reports.
NavTraffic is available as a factory-installed feature on new models from Acura (MDX, RDX, RL, TL), Cadillac (CTS), Infiniti (G35 Sedan), Lexus (LS 460 L, LS 460, LS 600h L) and Nissan (Altima), as well as through a number of aftermarket and handheld units from Alpine, Garmin, Kenwood and Pioneer Electronics. Selected as the 2005 "Best Consumer Vehicle Application" by Telematics Update, the leading telematics industry organization, XM NavTraffic is expected to be available in 200,000 vehicles by the end of 2008.
"Consumers demand new methods for saving both time and money in their daily lives, particularly on their commute with gas prices once again on the rise," said Roderick MacKenzie, XM's vice president of advanced applications and services. "XM NavTraffic's real-time traffic technology is a powerful and valuable tool, allowing commuters to reach their destinations quicker, spend less time sitting in traffic and ultimately save money at the pump."
In addition to the six new markets available March 31, XM NavTraffic is currently available in the following 44 metro areas: Atlanta; Austin, Texas; Baltimore; Boston; Buffalo/Niagara Falls, N.Y.; Charlotte, N.C.; Chicago; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Columbus, Ohio; Dallas/Ft. Worth; Denver/Boulder; Detroit; Hartford/New Britain/Middletown, Conn.; Houston/Galveston; Indianapolis; Kansas City, Kan.; Las Vegas; Los Angeles; Memphis, Tenn.; Miami/Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood, Fla.; Milwaukee/Racine; Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn.; Nashville, Tenn.; New York; Norfolk/Virginia Beach/Newport News, Va.; Orlando, Fla.; Philadelphia; Phoenix; Pittsburgh; Portland, Ore.; Providence/Warwick/Pawtucket, R.I.; Sacramento, Calif.; Sarasota/Bradenton, Fla.; San Antonio; San Diego; San Francisco/Oakland; San Jose, Calif.; Seattle/Tacoma; St. Louis; Tampa/St. Petersburg/Clearwater, Fla.; Washington, D.C.; West Palm Beach/Boca Raton, Fla.; and Wilmington, Del.