A day in London with Nokia location-based apps

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It’s the summer of great sports in London, with so many unforgettable milestones from Michael Phelps, Andy Murray, Usain Bolt, Jessica Ennis and other star athletes who have made their countries proud. I met up with my friend Katie in London to check out the excitement and lend support to her on-going quest to meet Prince William.

To get around the city, we turned to Nokia’s outstanding location-based apps to navigate London’s streets and transport networks while the city was at its busiest for the games. Nokia Drive, Nokia Maps, Nokia Transport, Nokia City Lens and Nokia Pulse, along with our trusty Nokia Lumia smartphones, served as our travel guides. In our Day in London video diary, we show how these apps work together to solve, effortlessly and intuitively, many of the where questions we all encounter each day. In this way, Nokia is redefining the where category, providing consumers with the best resources to navigate and anticipate the world around them.

Our video diary also demonstrates a new direction for Nokia’s Location and Commerce offerings and some of the ways we’re adding tremendous value for Windows Phone consumers. We’re focused on building apps that solve everyday problems, meet basic to complex needs and delight consumers.

Let’s say you need directions for your drive home. To get accurate directions, you should not have to endure a laundry list of tasks: opening the map application, selecting the destination, choosing the way of transportation, activating the traffic layer, tapping the start button, etc. How many taps are you willing to perform for such a simple need? One or two taps should be enough, and the Windows Phone platform is an elegant way to achieve this goal. As Katie demonstrates in the video, you can simply pin an address to your Lumia start screen for an easy way to reach your destination (no matter where you’re starting your journey).

In the video, Katie and I take to the streets of London in the midst of the games to show how all Nokia location-based apps can help in different situations. It’s also a demonstration of what all these apps can do when used together:

  1. Nokia Drive helped me save money and quickly reach my hotel upon arrival in London, thanks to its offline experience that includes (unlike the competition) offline search and offline routing.
  2. Nokia City Lens helped me explore a new city and discover places to shop, eat and visit around me.
  3. Nokia Transport helped Katie get to Hyde Park on time, navigating London’s busy public transport network during the games. It told her the best route, the time of travel and when to leave.
  4. Nokia Pulse made it easy for us to meet up with friends, with text, photos and, most importantly place details.
  5. Nokia Maps, as we experienced, also goes beyond route planning from A to B to embrace rich content such as reviews and photos from travel guides and individual users.

We’ve been talking extensively about Nokia location-based apps on this blog, and we thank you for the many positive reviews and constructive feedback. You’ve helped us improve our offerings. With all the frequent updates taking place these last few months, we’ve been collecting a number of feature requests, most of which are going to be implemented in future releases. As a rule of thumb, consider that the most meaningful features you have previously seen on Symbian are currently being ported over to Windows Phone.

Some of you have been expecting to see a huge, monolithic app that consolidates Nokia Maps, Nokia Drive, Nokia Transport, Nokia City Lens and Nokia Pulse. We are moving away from this approach to concentrate our development on apps that solve everyday questions, everyday needs, everyday use cases, such as you see in the Day in London video.

What we are working right now to bring these experiences to the next level, allowing these apps to communicate more with one another, to make it possible for you to change your mind about your travel route and to use the strengths of each app as input for another. You’ll see more and more integration and cooperation between our five location-based apps, even as they maintain their own personalities. In this way, like the games in London, our apps work together as a team with standout individual players.

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