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08 January 2019

Here uses Alexa to offer drivers voice-first navigation

First publishedon www.ITSInternational.com

Here Technologies is to integrate its navigation and location services with Amazon’s Alexa to offer drivers voice-first navigation.

At CES 2019 in Las Vegas, Here announced that it would utilise Alexa Auto tools to keep drivers focused on the road while offering personalised guidance.

Alexa will come pre-integrated with Here Navigation On-Demand, the company’s new navigation-as-a-service model which allows drivers to search for points of interest and access live traffic information.

Additionally, Here is bringing its location services platform to the Alexa service to allow users to search and locate points of interest, access live traffic information and conduct route planning. Users can ask Alexa to set a reminder to pick up shopping from a store after work from inside their home, for example. While driving, the in-vehicle navigation system finds the optimal route the shop based on real-time traffic information and issues a reminder as the vehicle approaches the store location.

Christoff Hellmis, vice president, strategic management at Here, says this shows that integrating another service like Alexa to voice interface can easily be done.

Alexa utilises Here’s location services to help users estimate their journey time.

Looking ahead, the partnership will explore opportunities to provide additional functionality to automakers and their customers. Here’s Open Location Platform (OLP) - which ingests live car sensor data pooled from multiple car brands - would allow Alexa to answer questions more contextually, for instance with a response that tells drivers to turn directly after a designated building.

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