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back to article Satnav-murdering Google slips its Maps into car dashboards

Hyundai and Kia will be dropping Google Maps into dashboards of their US models, demonstrating the integration next week. The cars will hit the showrooms next year. Google Maps and Google Places will find space in the 2014 Sorento CUV from Kia while Hyundai will integrate the apps into its Blue Link platform used across the …

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Anonymous Coward

We know were you went last Summer...

...and we know where you are now.

Big Brother is Watching you and not just on Google TV.

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Meh

A ten mile journey will now take 50 miles to complete while the Sat Nav takes you round all the advertised businesses before you can get to your destination with all the associated risks of distraction while driving.

Street view will be like watching telly while driving, explain that one to the police as you go into the back of the car in front. Not to mention the data charges you may have.

Street view, soon to be banned while the vehicle is in motion.

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Not possible!

Street view will be like watching telly while driving, explain that one to the police as you go into the back of the car in front. Not to mention the data charges you may have.

I don't know what your getting at here, the car needs streetview, it is how it sees to drive by itself. You didn't think the big G would let the fleshy ones actually have to do anything did you?

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Alert

Re: Not possible!

I don't know about you, but I *want* to get to the place where I can get in my car, tell it "take me to work" and sit back, read the morning (virtual) paper and let the car handle the mundane bits of the daily grind.

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Anonymous Coward

"Street view will be like watching telly while driving, explain that one to the police as you go into the back of the car in front. Not to mention the data charges you may have."

It'll be like Google Navigation currently on Android, it won't be a constant updating image, but will show snapshots of your upcoming turns/destination making them easier to recognise.

Instead of squinting for that street sign as you approach, you'll be able to recognise the co-op on the corner much earlier.

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Trollface

Thankfully not Apple

or that title may have been more like "Sat-Nav murdering Apple."

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WTF?

wtf?

Privacy implications are easily addressed by noting that drivers with a smartphone are already being tracked unless they've jumped through the requisite hoops to switch off such tracking, and even then their network operator still knows their every move unless they pop the battery out, so there aren't really any additional concerns here.

Oh that's all right then. Move along there, no massive privacy fail to see.

Another Reg hack whose articles I shall no longer bother reading.

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Ogi

Re: wtf?

Indeed, I feel the same. Not to mention there is one crucial difference. With a phone, If I really want to not be tracked, I can pull out the battery, or just leave it at home. Neither of those options are possible with the car (I mean, I can leave it at home, but that defeats the point of having the car in the first place).

And if the EU in its infinate wisdom decides to legally mandate this in cars (not sure if it is actually law yet), I suspect tampering/removing it will be illegal to boot.

And am I the only one disliking the idea of being forced to have to pay for a cellular contract for the car?

The more I see the general direction of the automotive sector, the happier I am with a 30 year old car. They are actively making new cars less desirable to me, and unless they ban old cars one day, I don't plan on buying (I guess if they manage to indirectly force me to not have a car, they win on the eco front anyway, so a win-win for them).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: wtf?

Yes, I must change mine before this becomes mandatory under our socialist state.

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WTF?

Re: wtf?

Dear Sirs,

Isn't it rather so that if the government wants us to have cellphone capabilities in our cars, that it must provide that for us? If my (considering I'd be fully employed) employer wants to me to come with 24x7 mail reading capabilities I sure as tell him/her to give me a device capable thereof. If he then says: it should also work in the neck of the woods, I sure tell him/her to get me a device capable thereof.

On the other hand, didn't Brussel win a case against Microsoft for forcing people to use Internet Explorer (or rather for not having enough options available besides Internet Explorer)? If the Automotive Industry is hoping for long lasting service contracts by reselling mobile services, they sure as hell should provide any possibility. Even one where it says: I buy a car in Belgium-, yet live in the UK, just because I can (and because it is cheaper in Belgium)...

Or is Brussels hoping that the Automotive Industry is stupid, and therefore Brussels might cream off on yet more beeeeellion dollar legislation that costs treeeeeellions of dollars to start with....

Oh well,

Regards,

Guus Leeuw

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Anonymous Coward

Re: wtf?@Ogi

"And am I the only one disliking the idea of being forced to have to pay for a cellular contract for the car?"

Under the last proposals I bothered to read, this wan't needed. The EU originally wanted a sim-free solution (or a "sleeping sim" approach), the mobile operators wanted a sim based one in order to force feed services that they could charge for, and I think that both options remain open. Car makers like BMW have reportedly teamed up with Toadafone to ream out their customers with a factory fitted contract sim providing a range of services as well as eCall compatibility, but BMW drivers like to pay more for less anyway. Up front costs for eCall were guessed at around €100 per vehicle, and basic eCall annual operating costs for the UK around £7.5m, say 30p per vehicle.

In the grand scheme of things the idea isn't a bad one (if it works in practice), and in its basic form isn't even much a threat to privacy. The threat is the inevitable feature creep into automated law enforcement, road pricing, and population monitoring. If you believe in "public services" you'll like all of those, otherwise you might regard the whole thing as a robotic beard-and-sandal in every car.

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FAIL

Re: wtf?

Have you murdered someone? What are you hiding?

DO you really think Google are interested in where you have been? (other than the obvious, showing you location relevant adverts).

Tin foil hats allround....

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Re: wtf?

Do you really think Google aren't interested in any data about you that either a) allows them to target more ads at you or b) they can sell on to others for cash? Because if you do, you're living in cloud cuckoo land.

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Anonymous Coward

Kia and Hyundai

As a one-time Hyundai owner (I was broke at the time, OK?) I hope the maps clearly show all the Kia and Hyundai service depots.

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Re: Kia and Hyundai

I have owned 2 Hyundai over the last 10 years and the only 'break down' i had was when one of the wipers broke during a heavy rain storm. So i guess you have been unlucky with yours

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Kia and Hyundai

To be fair the engine was a Mitsubishi (factory fitted) It was all but knackered after just 30000 Km.

And the cruise control, and the clutch, and the elect windows, and the door lock.....

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Re: Kia and Hyundai

Maybe he had a 1985 Hyundai Pony. The new Hyundais/Kias are actually pretty impressive vehicles

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Anonymous Coward

Not to mention snitching to the Stazi...

... if you exceed the speed limit by 1 mph.

A wonderful opportunity for profit-sharing from the subsequent fines.

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Happy

Re: Not to mention snitching to the Stazi...

" if you exceed the speed limit by 1 mph..."

Don't be silly - you won't be able to - the car is driving, not you, remember?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Not to mention snitching to the Stazi...

Yes, it all reminds me of one of those Philip K Dick Distopias.

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Anonymous Coward

Will it gather wifi hotspot information and other peoples emails as it drives?

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Go

no, but there is a wonderful opportunity to have maps up to date and with nice traffic info: if a lot of drivers take a route that isn't on your map, it can be added semi-automatically. Same for speed limits, average speeds on a certain road, real-time traffic info,.... You give some, you get some....

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Anonymous Coward

No but the second you take a diversion around some blackspot, it will tell everyone else and clog up that little "escape route" thus causing more jam ups as every sheepishly copies everyone else's routes!

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Anonymous Coward

Bll Ray *must* be US based

"Privacy implications are easily addressed by noting that drivers with a smartphone are already being tracked unless they've jumped through the requisite hoops to switch off such tracking, and even then their network operator still knows their every move unless they pop the battery out, so there aren't really any additional concerns here."

I'm sorry to pull the national card here, but that is a view that you could only acquire in the US (where it is, AFAIK, also incorrect) but much effort has been spent on making people believe this).

The difference between mobile phone tracking and Google tracking is that mobile phone tracking can be done by a telco, can only release such data under warrant (although anti-terror backdoors have neutered a lot of due diligence requirements) - the fact that Google and Apple et al obtain GPS and tracking data is one that is expected to be reviewed in 2013 in Europe as it is typically done with implicit consent or even without awareness of the user.

Any EU nation has Data Protection rules in place that prevent a 3rd party from acquiring personal information without consent (and if it's "sensitive", i.e. you're visiting a doctor it must further be EXPLICIT consent as well) so it's just as well they only do this in the US models. If I ever get a rental so equipped I'll rip the fuse out.

Thus, back to the topic - may be OK for the US, no way in Europe - especially not now Google already has come under scrutiny (the request for information gave them a month to reply, and that time expires on the 16th this month).

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Re: Bll Ray *must* be US based

It may be review by the EU but any actions must be undertaken at country level, which is unlikely to happen in the near future. An the fact that Google provides a opt out should protect them as well.

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Big Brother

Re: Bll Ray *must* be US based

Is the opt out buried five levels down in preferences under the 'Beware of the Leopard' tab?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Bll Ray *must* be US based

"...it is typically done with implicit consent or even without awareness of the user."

Eh? I don't know about Apple, but Android makes it quite clear and gives you the option to turn it on or off as part of it's initial setup process - it has a screen that just asks you about location reporting. It is also very easy to find in the settings to change your mind after that.

If you also turn on location sharing for latitude services it also sends you an e-mail every few months reminding you that you have it turned on in case you want to stop using it.

However the traffic information you get from Google due to people allowing their location information to be shared is really good. Even some minor roads have traffic information on them which can give you a great idea of how much hold-up there will be. Combined with Google Now to alert you to start travelling to get to the airport or a meeting based on monitoring the current road conditions and your calendar works great.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Bll Ray *must* be US based

The comparison was intended to remind people how much they're tracked already, but was perhaps too flippant.

UK Telcos do track, and store everything for two years with the RIPA removing any need for a warrant in the UK - I covered the subject in some depth back in 2007 and little has changed since then:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/11/04/location_information/

For a really dramatic example there's:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/03/30/cell_tracking/

The accumulation of tracking data is, or should be, a concern to all of us with insurance-by-mileage being the next likely battleground.

Bill.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Bll Ray *must* be US based

An the fact that Google provides a opt out should protect them as well.

Only in the car situation. With respect to what is being investigated in Europe it's already too late for Google, and that's not just about failure to obtain proper permission of Google account owners, it's about gathering data of people FULLY WITHOUT their knowledge, permission or agreement. The crime has been committed (actually, they're still at it) so it's merely a matter of deciding on what the consequences are for Google.

What makes matters worse for Google is that they have already been prosecuted in other countries for the same issue, so it's not like they were unaware there was a problem ("Ich habe es nicht gewusst" hasn't been a viable defence since the Nuremberg trials anyway) so I do not expect any leniency. In this context, Schmidt's public statements could en up an object lesson in how press appearances can come back to haunt a company. That's why I'm waiting for Google's response to the French letter (unintentional pun :) which was underwritten by regulators of 27 different countries, because the response will pave the way for how all the complaints that have backed up whilst waiting for Google's reply will be dealt with.

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Mushroom

Satnavs - The curse of modern driving

Last week, I was rear ended by another car in a supermarket car park. The driver was setting her satnav for the journey home. A grand distance of 1 mile.

Do you really need to use your Satnav for this sort of journey? no you don't...

[icon] What I'd like to do to her and all those like her.

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Bronze badge

Re: Satnavs - The curse of modern driving

To be fair, she sounds like the type of driver who, if not setting the sat nav will be doing her nails or something equally stupid at the same time as driving.

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Re: Satnavs - The curse of modern driving

"Last week, I was rear ended by another car in a supermarket car park. The driver was setting her satnav for the journey home. A grand distance of 1 mile."

I understand your anger, of course, but don't blame the satnav which is merely a tool. As usual, many people should be told "This machine has no brain, use your own."

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Re: Satnavs - The curse of modern driving

Isn't "driving without due care and attention" a criminal offence? I'm sure the police would take a pretty dim view of it, at least.

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Joke

Re: Satnavs - The curse of modern driving

I think you'll find it was the driver who was the tool.

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Re: her satnav

Was she fit?

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WTF?

Re: Satnavs - The curse of modern driving

I'm actually sure, dear Sir, that the police couldn't be bothered with such a lowly offense for which they need 20 days to fill in the red tape...

They don't even come for a stolen bike... That's a criminal offense too... Sometimes they don't even come when one calls and says there's a burglar in the house... Remain and Quiet, si... Paf... Hello? Hello? Helloooo? Oh well... Click Tuuut Tuuut Tuuut....

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@Guus

Depressingly, you are quite correct. However, smash two cars together, and block the highway for long enough, and they'll probably turn up eventually.

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Re: Satnavs - The curse of modern driving

Do you really need to use your Satnav for this sort of journey?

It doesn't excuse the airhead driving, but quite a lot of people use satnav for journeys they know well because it will alert them to traffic congestion and other hold-ups.

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Thumb Down

Offline maps?

Knowing Google, I'm pretty sure they will neglect offline functionality in favor of their cloudy solution. I, for one, do not want to consider a cloudy navigation for serious (and especially international) road trips because I a) don't want to be affected by network outages and b) don't want my mobile service bill to exceed my petrol bill.

Speaking of, will order an Alfa Romeo with TomTom integration via Blue&Me soon.

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Joke

Re: Offline maps?

And by ordering an Alfa spend far more on garage bills than you would on any excess mobile charges :)

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Happy

Re: Offline maps?

I know. An Alfa is like a high-maintenance girlfriend. ;) But at least I want her satnav to be a proper one.

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Go

Re: Offline maps?

If the offline functionality works the same way as the current Android Google Maps app, then for every day use it shouldn't be an issue. I've not seen an 'out of data' error for at least 2 years, and that includes trips to deepest darkest Wales and Ireland. Even in rural England on GPRS I've been able to calculate a route and the phone will do its stuff, grabbing the full route info when it comes into decent coverage.

The other advantage of downloading map data is it should be fairly upto date; I've got Google to correct a map error and it was done within 6 weeks. AFAIK, the same error still exists on TomTom/Teleatlas, despite reporting it at the same time. At least it was on an upto date map circa 18months later.

Finally, regarding map errors, on my Dad's Ford Mfr sat-nav, the M6 ends somewhere in Cheshire, and restarts immediately. However, the two road elements don't seem to be joined, and causes the sat-nav to get itself all confused and upset.

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Re: Offline maps?

High maintenance she may be... but she'll turn heads and be as much fun as you like for your trouble.

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Facepalm

Drove a Hyundai i40 recently...

and i thought the sat nav was really good!

I don't see why they would change it to Google maps. surely loading maps on the fly is going to be a downgrade, what if you lose signal...

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Re: Drove a Hyundai i40 recently...

"surely loading maps on the fly is going to be a downgrade, what if you lose signal..."

My point exactly. Imagine the nightmare and frustration of facing a loss of signal or a network outage of any sort in a stressful and critical moment while driving. Especially on a long and tiresome journey!

Value-added features and services that rely on IP connectivity are fine of course, but maps have to be stored locally on the satnav. Every other solution is plainly a joke, period.

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Re: Drove a Hyundai i40 recently...

You are aware that Google Maps caches the map data?

You can manually cache an area in advance in maps (I just did it for a trip to the Canaries over New Years).

Also Google Navigate pre-caches trips, so as long as you've got a data connection at the start of the trip and picked where you want to go to, it shouldn't matter if you have no data from that point onwards (unless you travel miles off the shown route, but it does cache a few miles each side just in case).

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Unhappy

Re: Drove a Hyundai i40 recently...

"You are aware that Google Maps caches the map data?

You can manually cache an area in advance in maps (I just did it for a trip to the Canaries over New Years)."

I just tried this feature and could barely select the whole Stockholm county before I got the error message "Selected area too large. Please zoom in." Sorry, this feature is just a joke and a pale shadow of full offline functionality which TomTom and their ilk have had for many years.

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Re: Drove a Hyundai i40 recently...

I wish I had taken my GPS when I went to Marin County last summer. I thought I could get by with the Blackberry since I had 4 different mapping/GPS programs. None of them worked in the vehicle unless it was on the dash. If I lost my cell connection the GPS quit working, and in Marin county I didn't have a cell connection most of the time.

I took my GPS out there a year earlier and it worked great.

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Data Cost

I read this on Googles blog yesterday but it didn't occur to me the better solution maybe to just show your mobile screen, so thanks for the insight. I think you are correct.

The problem I have is that this will require another sim, another mobile contract to get data. Is it not time that the network operators changed their model and give you multiple sims you can use? I'm paying them a monthly contract to provide me with data, why do I need a separate contract for every device I own, phone, tablet and now car?

I refuse to go this route and just enable tethering on my mobile to use my tablet, but I wish they wouldn't make life that hard.

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Re: Data Cost

Just connect to your home wifi (or local McDonalds wifi) to download the data you need and cache it.

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