Real time traffic broadcast to debut in Australia

Intelematics an Australian Telematics solution provider and a subsidiary of Royal Automobile Club of Victoria started last week the first broadcast of traffic information in Australia. This broadcast has commenced in Melbourne using existing FM infrastructure to transmit the traffic information to compatible navigation devices via “TMC” (Traffic Message Channel, the international standard for delivering real-time information about road and traffic conditions to navigation systems). During the coming months, Intelematics will undertake final calibration and testing of the service called SunaTraffic, prior to it becoming available to consumers.

Melbourne was selected for the first broadcast owing to the assistance of the Victoria State’s transport administration in providing access to a range of traffic data. Unique to Intelematics’ approach is the identification of congestion levels using data derived from the traffic light control system. Intelematics combines this data with additional detail from probe vehicles and human observers. The company uses ITIS Holdings traffic platform to aggregate this information into a single real-time data feed.

“Intelematics has developed Australia’s first and only comprehensive real-time navigation service that is based on the global TMC standard. We have combined live data from thousands of traffic network sensors with human observation of road conditions to deliver one of the world’s most detailed and accurate navigation services”, said Adam Game, CEO of Intelematics Australia.

A well developed navigation market

This future traffic information service will give some additional reasons to Australian customers for purchasing a navigation device: according to Intelematics the 2006 sales for both in-dash and PND navigation solution were approximately 300,000. The forecast for 2007 is 600,000 of which approximately 80,000 is in-dash. Considering the Australian population is about 21 million, the penetration rate is not far away from United Kingdom and about the same as France.

According to a market study commissioned by local map provider Sensis (Nov 06 — Jan 07): 26% of consumers surveyed are currently using portable and – or in-car GPS navigation. 35% of all respondents surveyed are considering purchasing a GPS navigation device in the next 12 months.

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