Navigating around busy cities today is next to impossible for some people without the aid of their preferred smartphone GPS system guiding the way.
Whether it’s Waze, Google Maps or Ride with GPS, people today are rarely using physical or “old school” printed maps to figure out where their destination is and how to get there.
While this is all fine and good when walking, driving or cycling around an area, there is an issue that arises when either walking through a large building or campus. Since today’s average consumer typically utilizes smart technology to help guide themselves around buildings, it’s a natural progression to move to an interior GPS system.
One company that’s looking to move the ball forward on this is Microsoft. The company has announced news of its indoor navigation app, dubbed Microsoft Path Guide, currently only available on Android, that uses existing building sensors and connected technology to help people on their specific routes. Developed by Microsoft Research, this indoor navigation app works with people’s smart devices to count steps and sense general start points.
Rather than reaching out to people at the customer service kiosk at a big mall or looking at a large map on a wall, consumers will soon have the capability to maintain some form of autonomy. Some are saying that this may also be especially beneficial to blind people guiding themselves around an area they’ve never been before or getting around in a country that speaks a different native tongue.
As this is the first iteration of Microsoft Path Guide, the company is hoping to receive feedback on the mobile app and enhance its features.