Are there many differences in different navigation programs?
The market of navigation software is full of programs for various operating systems. There is an opinion that the versions of one program for different platforms are absolutely identical. But it is not so. On the details and technical nuances of the implementation of popular navigation programs will discuss in this article. patpitchaya, Shutterstock.com Navigation programs are different: 1. Platform (the operating system for which it was developed). Developers tend to make navigation programs, focusing on several different platforms simultaneously. For example, almost all navigation programs are available for Windows Mobile / CE. Versions of many programs are also available for the iPhone and iPad, and more recently, Progorod has been added to this list. At the same time, some operating systems (Bada and Symbian) are deprived of attention: for them there are versions of just a few navigation programs. But it is a big mistake to assume that the same versions of navigation software for different operating systems work exactly the same. For example, the advanced settings of the GPS receiver are available only in Windows CE and Windows Mobile, in the Progorod for Bada until recently the update of maps from the program interface was not available (the patch with the correction was released only in early April), and the ability to scale Moving and rotating maps through multitouch is available only for Android and iOS (that is, for iPhone and iPad). The same city on the iPhone and iPad draws three-dimensional objects using OpenGL, and “Navitel Navigator” on Windows – 3D emulation. 2. The order of construction of the route. Actually, the differences in the order of construction of the route and prompted to write this article. Delving into the technical details, not everyone knows that the calculations of any information system can be made both locally and on a remote computer (client-server interaction). Most navigation software calculates the route locally – by the device, based on the available data (the relevance of maps, the latest traffic information received). As far as I know, client-server interaction is organized only in the “Progorod” navigation program. The coordinates of the start and finish points are sent to the server, which stores constantly updated information about temporary changes on the road, traffic jams, etc. The server generates a route based on these data and sends it back to the client device (for fairness, I’ll note calculate the route and locally). Thus, the user receives the route taking into account all the most relevant data, without loading them explicitly. This indirectly also causes the difference … 3. In the work of the service of traffic jams. The principle of functioning of the traffic jams service is approximately the same for all navigation systems. The difference lies in the amount of received information. For example, in Progorod, the amount of information loaded is several times smaller because this program receives information on the state of the road only on the section of the road along which the main route is laid, others (Navitel Navigator, SitiGID) – on the roads of the entire city . 4. Maps. Good maps are a prerequisite for the survival of navigation software on the market. The “Navitel” and “Progorod” teams are developing the maps of Russia on their own. Maps differ not only in detail and the number of points of interest (POI), but also in the standard in which they are implemented. But there is an exception: Yandex.Navigator does not store maps in memory at all, but constantly loads them from the server, which requires an Internet connection. Differently organized and updated maps. If updating directly from the program, automatic updating and manual filling of maps are standard procedures for all navigation programs, the dynamic update service is downloading daily updated data on temporarily blocked road sections, repairs, signs operating at a certain time of day or days of the week, reverse traffic by lanes – available only in Progorod of the second version. 5. Additional features. Junction View, “Augmented Reality,” technologies for improving location accuracy, displaying three-dimensional objects, security functions — they all distinguish a particular product from the rest. However, one should not forget that their implementation also depends on the operating system. So, a very interesting service from “Progorod” “Augmented Reality” (overlaying an image from a camera of points of interest) does not work under Windows CE and Windows Mobile, but it functions perfectly on devices with Bada, Android and iOS. Navigation programs also differ in price: there are completely free, and there are those for the use of which will have to fork out for $ 50. The technical nuances described above are only a demonstration of the fact that there are quite a few differences that are inconspicuous at first glance. The article is designed for people interested.