In all the excitement over Instagram finally coming to Windows Phone, an app has been overlooked that is potentially even more significant – Waze, the real-time navigation system.
Google bought the crowd-sourced app some months ago, so it is surprising to most observers that Google has permitted the Windows Phone app to go ahead.
Waze takes the information shared by users of its app and makes a real-time projection of how long it will take users to get to their destination. This enables users can also take account of traffic jams, accidents and the like and change direction.
Microsoft describes Waze as a fun, community based mapping, traffic & navigation app and claims 60 million users.
“By simply driving around with Waze open, you’re already contributing tons of real-time traffic & road info to your local driving community.” Says Microsoft. “You can also actively report accidents, hazards, police and other events you see on the road, and get road alerts on your route too. Find the cheapest petrol station along your route with community-shared fuel prices. Waze also makes it fun and simple to meet up and coordinate with friends on the road.”
However, Microsoft does warn that extended use of GPS running in the background can dramatically decrease your battery life. Waze will automatically shut down if you run it in the background and haven’t driven for a while.
Waze can be downloaded from the Windows Phone app store here.