- TomTom Maps
Location is increasingly relevant, playing a key role in enabling connectivity. In a connected world, users demand maps that are accurate and up-to-date, and which can be seamlessly integrated across automotive, mobile and online location-based applications. Future use cases, such as Autonomous Driving, require significantly more detailed and more accurate maps than are available today.
The need for a map that perfectly reflects the real-world will continue to grow. This will lead to new opportunities to create cutting edge software and technology. For example, we see an increased development of map use cases in the area of Autonomous Driving, where connected cars will be equipped with real-time maps that are used with sensors to navigate without human input. Autonomous Driving requires advanced map components to support numerous vehicle systems.
The challenge in mapmaking today is to deliver the highest quality and most detailed real-time maps in an efficient and cost-effective way to facilitate this vision. Changes in the map happen every day, in locations around the world. Mapmaking platforms will need to automatically process an increased volume of real-world changes reported by remote in-car sensors and connected devices while minimising the time between detecting changes in the real world and updating the map on the end user's device or platform.
With more than 25 years of experience, we offer an extensive digital map database with global coverage. Our maps are used by more than 400 million devices worlwide: on PNDs, in-dash navigation devices, smartphone applications, and web-based applications.
In 2015, we achieved a significant milestone with the migration to our next generation mapmaking platform, the only of its kind in the industry. This enables us to address current and future needs for highly accurate maps that are always up-to-date in an efficient and cost-effective way.
In addition, enabled by our new technology and infrastructure, we launched two Autonomous Driving related products: HD Map and RoadDNA for all highways in Germany in 2015 and all interstate roads in California and Michigan in early 2016.
We will leave traditional batch mapmaking process behind and will fully leverage our transactional mapmaking platform to deliver the most up-to-date, accurate maps globally in 2016 and onwards. On-demand access to real-time maps via TomTom’s Map Content API is planned for 2016.
Additionally, we will continue to launch our HD Map and RoadDNA products for additional geographies, helping to make Autonomous Driving a reality faster.
With our next generation mapmaking platform, we are revolutionising the way digital maps are created; we are moving away from traditional batch process towards a continuously releasable map, enabling highly accurate maps that are always up-to-date.
By shortening the time between detecting changes in the real world and updating the map on an end user’s device, we can deliver near real-time maps. Our maps are created and delivered via a formula that relies on: Intelligent Mapmaking, Closed Loop and Easy-To-Use Map Delivery Formats.
In today’s world, people expect to be always connected and their map data to be always up-to-date. However, changes in maps happen every day, in locations around the world. Every year about 15% of roads change: examples include new speed limits, a change in driving direction, adding address points or new geometry for a street. Ensuring that the map keeps up with these ongoing changes is a major challenge for mapmakers. Our new transactional mapmaking platform enables us to edit the map globally and shorten the time between editing the map and publishing it to end users.
TomTom uses intelligent mapmaking to deliver accurate and up-to-date maps. We invented and perfected a highly efficient hybrid approach that combines professional mapmaking methods with community input and has a focus on fast cycle-times and quality assurance. Through our mapmaking approach, we tap into local teams of highly skilled map technicians located in more than 40 countries and a fleet of mobile mapping vans that drive the streets every day. We have a growing community of hundreds of millions of users, of which many share map feedback with us as changes in the real world are detected. In addition, we continue to explore new sensor data as cars become more and more connected, to further extend our pool of hybrid mapmaking data. We believe that our mapmaking approach allows us to deliver highly accurate global maps more quickly.
Our transactional mapmaking platform allows us to rapidly close the loop between detecting changes in the real world and updating the map on an end user’s device. Transactional means a map change can pass through our closed loop process end-to-end, be quality assured, and end up in the product for use in a matter of days, hours and eventually minutes, fulfilling a key requirement for real-time maps.
First, a map change is detected via our intelligent mapmaking process. Next, we select only the part of the map that is impacted by the change. We update the map and immediately conduct hunderds of quality checks that assure accuracy. We then merge the changed piece back into the map as an incremental update. As this quality assured process is transactional, the map database is continuously releasable.
TomTom delivers global real-time map updates to customers via fast and frictionless map distribution mechanisms, including MultiNet-R, Navigation Data Standard (NDS) and Map Content API. MultiNet-R delivers all the high quality content layers of the TomTom map database in a single and easy-to-use relational database model. As an industry leader in the adoption of the NDS, we offer modular, plug-and-play run-time maps. Finally, our Map Content API provides access to the latest possible map changes with total flexibility.
Autonomous Driving is the most disruptive change in the automotive industry since the invention of the car. It will completely transform not only the way we commute but will boost the safety, comfort and efficiency of vehicles to a level beyond imagination. Autonomous Driving will require advanced map components to support numerous vehicle systems. Enabled by our new map technology and infrastructure, we launched two Autonomous Driving related products in 2015.
TomTom HD Map provides a highly accurate and realistic representation of the roadway profile, including 3D lane and road markings information. The HD Map extends the range of view for the vehicle enabling smoother, safer and more efficient driving scenarios. The HD Map can also be leveraged to fulfil a broad range of advanced driving applications. The first generation of the HD Map focuses on highway driving. Support for other environments including urban and rural will follow as HD evolves. In 2015, we launched publicly available HD test map data for Detroit, Michigan and the industry’s first commercial launch of an HD Map for all highways in Germany.
TomTom RoadDNA is a patented and highly optimised technology to enhance lateral and longitudinal positioning along the roadway. With this technology a vehicle can correlate RoadDNA data with data obtained by its own sensors. By doing this correlation in real-time, the vehicle accurately knows where it is located on the road, even while traveling at high speeds. By converting a 3D point cloud of roadside patterns into a compressed, 2D view of the roadway, RoadDNA delivers a solution that can be used in-vehicle with limited processing requirements. Without losing roadway detail, this technique eliminates the complexity of identifying each single roadway object, but rather creates a unique pattern of the roadway environment.