TÜV SÜD Claims Tele Atlas Maps Most Accurate
There is an interesting study coming out today from TÜV SÜD in conjunction with Tele Atlas. TÜV SÜD is a testing, inspection and certification organization which (I assume) was commissioned by Tele Atlas to conduct a test of map accuracy. Their results showed that the Tele Atlas maps were more accurate in two-thirds of markets tested. They used “the latest commercially available GPS devices from two leading brands”. This is similar to a test I performed a couple of years ago (NAVTEQ VS Tele Atlas), but with much more sophistication.
It is important to discuss how the tests were conducted. About a dozen markets in North America were picked at random to research. Then within each market the testers drove about fifty different routes covering about 300 miles. They looked at three different criteria for those tests.
- Destination availability; can users find any address or point of interest (POI) they want in the system?
- Routing calculation and guidance; are users routed to their destination without problems?
- Destination accuracy; do users arrive at the door of the exact address or POI selected?
The first and third criteria look to be pretty black and white… just what you want in such a test. I’m not certain how the second test was conducted– I assume they were not testing the quality of the route but rather the ability of the device to get you there without running into a mapping error.
TÜV SÜD says that in two thirds of the markets tested in the USA the Tele Atlas maps were more accurate. In Canada and Mexico the Tele Atlas maps tested better in all of the tested markets. (Again, about a dozen markets were tested in total.)
It has always been my advice that in some areas you will find one map vendor more accurate, and in other areas a competing map vendor might be more accurate– and that advice still holds true. Although the test was likely commissioned by Tele Atlas, the procedure they used looks pretty well designed and objective.