With Waze Enjoy Social Navigation, Discounted Gas Prices, Voice Control And Lots More

Have you ever got stuck in traffic and hoped you could simply check in to a social map where someone has suggested an alternate route? Even better, if you had an early information about the roadblock, you could have avoided the route? Waze, an Android and iOS based startup, can help you get all the necessary traffic information and help you reach your destination without much frustration.

waze-intro

The Android and iOS based startup backed by Kleiner Perkins is aimed towards crowdsourcing traffic information. The app can be used to notify(and get notified as well) traffic information like roadblocks, police traps, jams, accidents etc. The app lets you take advantage of the data fetched by other fellow drivers(also using Waze) in your locality to outsmart traffic. Powered with voice control(initiated by a simple hand gesture) the app can be a great way to stay connected to the traffic updates and report necessary changes that you might encounter during your daily road trip.

The app has recently launched a new feature that will enable users to refuel gas at a lower price. So apart from finding (and reporting) traffic information one can now locate a gas station that’s offering lower prices. GasBuddy, already a market leader in this segment is already doing a great job. Users will have to wait for some time to find out the accuracy of Waze’s information and how it is planning to take up the challenge of competing with Gasbuddy. Waze has partnered with vendors that will offer discounts to Waze users at nearly 2000 stations currently in US. The service will gradually be rolled out globally so that the community can also report a gas station in their daily commute.

Along with other behemoths in the mapping scenario, Waze is also confirmed to be a part of Apple’s new turn-by-turn mapping services that is being implemented in the latest iOS6. This will definitely take the numbers up for the Waze users thereby producing more information for the service. However it is still unsure to how far Apple is planning to integrate the service in its maps, we will have to wait for that too.

Other notable features that has been dispensed includes search by category(for locating restaurants, ATMs, coffee shops etc), waypoints(to add a stop in your proposed route, helpful for car poolers) and text-to-speech.

To be candid, with what Waze professes to be offer, will eventually grow into a complete tool for car navigation. Now to be true, crowdsourcing, in terms of usability, offers both sides of a coin. Information generated by users help keep thing updated and grows at a steady pace as well. On the other hand, the accuracy of the information is questionable. Nonetheless, Waze has grown into a massive database, thanks to the (17million plus) community and doing great so far (else the Apple deal might not have happened). If things goes this way, Waze has all the mettle to change the face of turn-by-turn navigation by so-called social (storytelling) reporting of traffic.

Wakoopa, the Service that made Software Social, Comes to an End

In an email to all customers, Wouter Broekhof, the Founder & CTO of Wakoopa, has announced that the service that enabled discovering software social is now coming to an end. wakoopaWakoopa Social started six years ago with the intention to build the ‘lastFM for software’. Wakoopa uses a client side application that logs the usage of software and Web applications and lets users publish this usage information on their profiles at the website. Analysis of ones profile leads to recommendations for additional software while users can write reviews, give descriptions, and tag software.

In June 2008, Wakoopa announced $1 million USD in new funding and since 2010, Wakoopa has been focused on the corporate research community. They’ve developed products such as Trailspot and QD to bring online research to the next level. Wakoopa will continue to focus on making products for corporate research market, although they’ve hinted that something is in the works for the consumers as well. The switch in priority would mean the end of Wakoopa Social.

From next week, Wakoopa Social will stop tracking your data and on June 30, 2012, the service will be closed definitively. From July 1, 2012 to the next three months, you will be allowed to download an export of your own Wakoopa data.

One Minute on the Internet

The digital world is much more complex than you think. And guess what? This claim will not assume status-quo. In the forthcoming days, months and year, we will witness a larger penetration in connectivity and digitization. Content will be getting richer not only in terms of quality but also in terms of quantity. These claims are backed by eye-opening stats from Intel Corporation underpinning happenings that take place in “one minute” over the internet. Here is how it goes:

What happens in an Internet Minute?

  • 639,800 GB of global IP data is transferred
  • 6 new Wikipedia articles are published
  • 1300 new mobile users are subscribed
  • 20 people become victims of identity
  • 204 million emails are sent
  • 47,000 apps are downloaded
  • 100+ new LinkedIn accounts are created
  • $83,000 of sales happen on Amazon
  • 20 million photo views on Flickr, out of which 3,000 are new photos
  • 320+ new Twitter accounts are created and 100,000 tweets occur
  • 277,000 logins on Facebook and 6 million page views happen
  • 2+ million searches on Google
  • 1.3 million views on YouTube and 30 hours of new videos are uploaded
60 seconds on the internet

This doesn’t stop here! Predictions for the future are even more shocking. Intel Corporation suggests that by 2015, the number of connected devices will outnumber the total human population of the planet by two times.

Time just got faster!