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deCarta Survey Reveals Consumer Priorities and Safety Concerns For Next-Generation Connected Cars

Drivers Wary of Driving Distractions; Upbeat about Integrated Search, Traffic Features

deCarta, the leading independent location-based services (LBS) platform company, today released findings which highlight the top consumer navigation features for next-generation connected cars, along with the top safety issues that should be considered cause for alarm. According to survey data, 56% of drivers have safety concerns about managing multiple, non-integrated applications for local search, navigation and mapping while behind the wheel. This indicates a current, and potentially major, challenge for the auto industry and points to the need for more integrated, “driver-centric” applications, regardless of whether they are on a smartphone or in-dash navigation system.

“At deCarta, we have consistently stressed the need for automakers to deliver a new format for context-aware, real-time navigation systems in connected cars,” said J. Kim Fennell, CEO, deCarta. “Too often, users today are having to open up multiple yet non-integrated apps to get what they need for travel which creates an unsafe experience. Connected services including local search, navigation, traffic flow, parking, fuel prices should operate in a contextually-aware, integrated fashion providing the right information and functionality at the right time in a seamless manner, resulting in a more driver-centric, safer experience. For example, search solutions today often show results behind the driver rather than the most convenient results ahead of them. Unfortunately, as seen in our survey, drivers today aren’t getting what they need.”

According to deCarta, more than 65% of those surveyed said they would prefer always-on navigation systems that work with or without wireless coverage in their vehicle. Likewise, 64% said they desire smart integrated traffic solutions for optimum route calculation, including traffic-enabled routing that continuously checks current and historic traffic flow and upcoming roadway incidents and re-routes the trip automatically.

As for local search features, 33% of respondents indicated they want the ability to find places along their current route, like a restaurant to stop ahead of them in the next hour. 27% also wanted smarter, more useful searches that combine multiple needs such as parking near the place they were being navigated to. Additionally, 26% indicated they wanted more intelligent search to find gas stations along their route ahead of them combined with current/cheapest fuel prices.

Among those who now use on-board navigation systems, just 7% use them for “near-me-now discovery” to determine their locations and proximity to nearby sites. Adding intelligent “search along a route” functionality could become a major win for automakers, notes Fennell.

More than two-thirds of respondents (69%) considered dashboard screens that display videos and other Internet content to be the most dangerous types of onboard information systems.  A substantial 79% majority of those polled preferred “voice-activated mapping systems that allow drivers to keep their eyes on the road” as an essential safety-enhancing feature. This reinforces the value of the work deCarta is doing with major speech recognition companies.

To compile this poll, deCarta surveyed more than 150 U.S. car owners during January 10-11, 2015. For more information and details on the survey, please visit

About deCarta
deCarta, Inc. develops and provides specialized geospatial platform technology for customer-hosted or cloud-hosted mapping, routing, navigation, geocoding and local search applications. The platform is ideal for high volume, complex LBS offerings where scalability, reliability and global coverage is needed.

deCarta serves the mobile, Internet, enterprise-fleet, and automotive connected-car markets. Founded in 1996 and headquartered in San Jose, Calif., deCarta has additional offices and distribution partners in France, China, Brazil and South Africa. Please visit


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