Waze adds new feature that won’t totally rely on crowd-sourced data
The latest feature for Waze users will keep them from driving on a road that is flooded
While both get you from point “A” to point “B” safely, and in the fastest possible time, Google Maps will also help you find things to do, tell you where you should eat, where you can spend the night, and more once you reach your destination. And while both apps will warn you about any issues that could cause you to arrive later than expected, Waze relies on crowdsourced information more than Google Maps does.
The new flood warnings for Waze users will first be available in Norfolk, Virginia. However, if everything works as expected, the feature will be made available to additional regions. At last count, Waze has 140 million monthly users with 30 million users in the U.S.
Back in October, Waze CEO Guy Berkowitz revealed some sobering news about the app’s capabilities. “We have a problem with the algorithm,” he said. “The more people we serve, the more it’s affected. The coronavirus has put us in a situation where we have to reinvent our algorithm.” Using crowdsourced data, it makes sense that if there are fewer people on the road because of the virus, the number of crowdsourced reports sent to Waze each day will decline.
Many of the crowdsourcing features in Waze are now available in Google Maps which begs the question, why hasn’t Google shut Waze down? Apparently, the company feels that there is enough of a difference between the two. And looking at the apps, that is true. Google Maps looks like a polished, professional effort while Waze can take on the appearance of a cartoon.
Additionally, Waze shows hyperlocal ads with content that is relevant to the driver’s current location. The app’s own promotional material for advertisers highlights its ability to help
drivers find advertisers’ businesses. As Waze cleverly says, “Become part of your customer’s journey.”
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