Eyewitness News, Waze team up to help your commute


Exclusive Waze traffic reports on Eyewitness News
May 28, 2013 6:50:48 AM PDT
Eyewitness News and Waze have partnered to help you avoid traffic jams along your commute. It's a free, community-based traffic app that you can see exclusively on Eyewitness News.

Waze tells you where the traffic jams are and how to get around them. And it does it by gathering real-time GPS data from its millions of users as they drive.

"We have a community of 50 million drivers that are responsible for helping us collect all of that information. So it's all driven by the crowd, all created by the crowd," said Waze Vice President Di-Ann Eisnor.

Eisnor thinks of it as a win-win. Drivers agree to share their GPS coordinates with fellow users -- in exchange for a free turn-by-turn navigation service that gets more accurate as more people use it.

"It's 100 percent a community and people know that all they have to do is open the application and drive with it -- and they're contributing to the information that everybody else gets," said Eisnor.

Waze works on pretty much any newer smartphone or tablet with a GPS receiver. So that means pretty much any Android device, newer models of the BlackBerry, the iPhone, and 3G models of the iPad.

Many drivers use Waze with their smart phone mounted in a suction cup holder to keep both hands on the wheel. You should never type while driving -- in fact, Waze won't let you -- because it's dangerous and illegal. But if you're parked, or you're a passenger, you can report traffic problems.

Those alerts help other drivers and they help Eyewitness News traffic give you the most accurate and detailed reports.

Incident reports on Waze are up to the second. And if you join the ABC7 News Traffic Spotters group on Waze, we'll mention you on the air when your report helps us out.

You can download the Waze app for your device by going to Waze.com, and then be sure to join our ABC7NY Traffic Spotters group.