Electronic Horizon Launches

Anticipating the Road Ahead with the Navigation SDK

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Jul 22, 2021

Electronic Horizon Launches

Anticipating the Road Ahead with the Navigation SDK

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Jul 22, 2021

Mapbox Horizon (Beta) now distributed with the Navigation SDK V2, predictively delivering drivers relevant roadway information like speed limits, incidents, congestion, or developer defined custom data sets such as parking spot availability. This data can be static (always present on the map) - speed limits, tunnels, bridges, names of intersecting streets, road class or average speed. Or it can be dynamic - construction zones, incidents and congestion ahead. Horizon also works with custom objects developers put on a map - points, lines, polygons - and Horizon alerts when the driver approaches, enters or leaves them. For example, Horizon can be configured to warn drivers about an upcoming school zone, display an alert when the driver is inside it and track when they leave the school zone. While drivers may be used to this for turn by turn navigation, Horizon serves information up to 10km ahead of the driver even if they are not following turn-by-turn navigation.

Horizon lowers the barrier to entry for developers to benefit from predictive navigation technology, which previously has been accessible only to high end vehicles. Customers like NCS from Singapore have an out-of-the-box solution to manage custom data on map and predict driver behaviour. “Mapbox Horizon and the ability to add custom data are fundamental to our product development. We’re happy to have this technology in our toolbox to tackle the transportation challenges of tomorrow.” - says Damien Kopp, Lead of NEXT Products and Platforms, NCS

Mapbox Horizon consists of two parts - Graph Accessor and Most Probable Path.

How it works - Graph Accessor

Graph Accessor is a tool that treats the map as a graph of available roads, taking into account the road rules such as turn restriction. For Graph Accessor, distances in the real world are measured by road distances - specifically, how long it will take to get to a future point using the road network. Graph Accessor can also snap objects to the road graph - for example, a particular car wash with latitude X and longitude Y will be put on a road graph element (called graph edge) with id ABC. Now that this car wash has its own “address” on the road graph, the GraphAccessor can calculate the road distance that needs to be travelled to access it.

How it works - Most Probable Path

Most Probable Path is Mapbox Horizon’s best projection of where the driver will go. Horizon analyzes the road graph around the driver, selects the roads with highest functional class, factors in traffic rules and drivers previous behavior, sorts all the potential routes the driver may take from a given point and then selects the route with the highest probability. The driver may even be following turn by turn navigation, but Horizon will know they won’t make the next turn - because the majority of drivers never made that turn in the past. Most Probable Path is up to 10km long and updates itself each time the driver enters a new road graph edge.

Anticipate the Road Ahead

Most Probable Path + Graph Accessor = Horizon. Using Graph Accessor developers can assign “addresses” on the road graph to points of interest. Then using Most Probable Path developers isolate only the data that lies on the edges of the path that are relevant to a driver in the near future. Horizon is a map “vacuum cleaner” running on the map in front of the car, sucking in all the valuable road information to inform the driver about the road ahead. 

Originally designed for automotive customers, Horizon is a critical component of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) features for safety, comfort and efficiency. Automakers can anticipate road conditions ahead, such as congestion, and direct the ADAS to reduce speed to avoid harsh braking or turn off the in-car air conditioning when the driver is entering a tunnel or redirect headlights on curvy roads.  Another interesting application is optimizing vehicle emissions and fuel consumption by anticipating road slope changes.

Start developing now

Mapbox Horizon (iOS, Android) is distributed via the Navigation SDK V2 for the Public Beta period. In addition, auto makers can receive a demo of Mapbox Horizon by contacting our automotive experts and all are welcome to create a free account and download the solution today.

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Maps feature data from Mapbox © Mapbox, OpenStreetMap © OpenStreetMap and their data partners, including Maxar (if applicable, © Maxar).

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