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These days, the data fed into the HERE database is mostly collected using on board car sensors as well as our fleet of LiDAR-equipped vehicles for topographic and 3D surveys.
This database stores around one million kilometers of road geometries along with their associated attributes. As you can imagine, keeping this huge amount of data up to date can be a challenge, but time and care has allowed HERE to fully master and routinely carry out all the processes involved.
So now, with that all sorted, HERE has shifted its emphasis to improving the accuracy and level of detail in the database, in order to create the digital mock-ups of cities that autonomous vehicles of the future will rely on to localize their sensor data flow.
As well as that, HERE also increased our focus on indoor location, a market currently worth around $7 billion and—if it keeps with its current 40 per cent annual growth—projected to hit $40 billion by 2022.
The need for indoor location is driven by a few key factors:
Over the years, HERE has proven itself a leader in the creation of 3D indoor maps, which are often made up of documents like PDF or DWG drawings stitched together. Those files are collected from various providers, then processed both into a topological graph for routing applications and into shapes and features used to draw maps.
One of the key challenges is seamlessly moving from outdoor to indoor navigation. Think about buying a toy for a Christmas gift. Imagine you’re late and the store that has the last toy is located miles away in a mall you’ve never been to. No problem. Your onboard navigation system guides you there, connects as you go with the mall’s server via GSM to pre-book a parking spot. Once parked, you pick up your phone and the guiding app shows your directly to the store. Easy.
But to be able to work that way, behind the scenes the computers have to know all about roads, parking lot layouts, real-time parking spaces availability, and entrances’ locations. That’s a lot of different information from different computers to exchange, and interoperability is going to be a mainstay of tomorrow’s smart navigation systems.
The latest enhancements of HERE’s outdoor and indoor data are notably integrated by partners like GEOCONCEPT, The Geoptimization Company, fueling the best that GIS has to offer.