Waze is making beacons to keep drivers connected through tunnels

30 January 2019 - 20:38 By AFP Relaxnews
Waze Beacons have arrived in some New York and New Jersey tunnels.
Waze Beacons have arrived in some New York and New Jersey tunnels.
Image: AFP

Waze revealed this week that it has partnered with Port Authority and MTA to place Waze Beacons in tunnels to help users navigate even when out of GPS range.

Waze defines their Beacons as "small devices that keep you connected in dead-zones." Basically, they're Bluetooth-connected, battery-powered microcontrollers that keep your GPS from getting lost even when out of GPS range, and on Tuesday, the company announced that Waze Beacons supporting navigation within a handful of New York and New Jersey tunnels are now live.

When your phone navigation starts getting wonky inside Holland Tunnel, these devices can "transmit low-powered Bluetooth signals...directly to Bluetooth-enabled devices such as smartphones or tablets that are within its range -- typically 100 feet," according to their site. You'll receive alerts just as you would with a GPS signal and, in the event that you still miss your exit, your route will be updated in real-time.

Not only is this system available to users for free on both the App and Play Store, but also other navigation services can benefit from the already-installed Waze Beacons free of charge.