The quest to make maps more precise and to map the whole world
By Pino Bonetti, Jan 25, 2013
We want to give people the most accurate maps and location-based information.
Innovative collection technologies (e.g. LiDAR, the recent earthmine acquisition, etc.) and a team of local experts are at the heart of this process. But only when we compute all this fresh, detailed content are we able to create close to perfect digital copies of reality.
Recently, we have updated the maps that represent the backbone for all our products, from here.com to the latest Nokia Maps on Windows Phone 8. In fact if you have downloaded maps on your Windows Phone 8 smartphone, you should have been prompted to update them and enjoy the latest improvements. If you haven’t done so yet, go to settings > applications > maps > check for updates
Here’s a rundown on some of the highlights.
Maps for Serbia and Israel
Because we are committed to extend the coverage of our detailed maps to the whole world, we have added Serbia (including Kosovo) and Israel with this release. You can now search for places and calculate precise routes in these two countries too and soon we will also introduce turn-by-turn navigation with Nokia Drive.
High definition maps
Other improvements are happening under the hood, providing a better representation of the reality, more clarity and easier orientation. Every detail of our maps has been designed to provide the best experience. This abstraction is getting so precise, that may not need to look at satellite images anymore, if this is what you used to do to better orientate yourself.
Shapes are highly precise and detailed to better represent roads, coastlines and streams.
In Russia, Norway and Sweden we now collect and show higher details in wooded areas, improving orientation.
Pedestrian paths have been extended to more areas, including lesser-known parks, providing better walk navigation.
We also show more detail in less populated areas of Greece, France and Ireland.
Added or amended roads
To provide accurate and fresh maps, in the last 18 months we added or amended 133,000 km of roads only in the UK as you can see in the animation below.
Similar or larger numbers are valid for many other countries too. In Italy, for example, we already added the tunnel under Roma Tiburtina or in Germany the roads to the future main Berlin airport.
That’s it for this post, but as you can see, the improvement is continual and comprehensive. Not just in the apps, but in the data that provides their lifeblood.