Map accuracy in Alberta (terrible!)

Discussion in 'Maps and Routing' started by glen_s, Jul 30, 2008.

  1. glen_s

    glen_s

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    I recently took my go720 on a long trip to the coast and back, and one thing that I noticed was that in BC I was never showing off the road, no matter how remote the location or small the town. There was one place for a few km's outside of Golden BC, but they just opened a new stretch of highway there so it was understandable.

    When returning to Alberta, almost as soon as we crossed the border I started to get the old running parallel to the road issue, and in small towns being at least a block off of the real location. The major cities seem ok, but as soon as you are out a ways the accuracy is terrible. This is bad because sometimes finding a rural address in a strange area can be quite daunting. Even the main freeway between Calgary and Edmonton is off a great deal of the time.

    Why is this? Do they get the maps from the provincial governments and Alberta just did a terrible job on their data? What else would explain the BC roads being "right on the money" all the time and the Alberta roads generally all being off?
     
    glen_s, Jul 30, 2008
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  2. glen_s

    ac328

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    Hey glen_s,

    Agreed the map accuracy is off in Alberta, and across Canada for that matter. It's being discussed in this thread:

    https://www.tomtomforums.com/showthread.php?t=10526

    Maybe you want to check that one out. I'm in Calgary and can attest that outside the city the accuracy drops way off.
     
    ac328, Jul 30, 2008
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  3. glen_s

    glen_s

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    That link you posted is just a few questions about someone contemplating buying a 730 etc.

    I haven't tried updating my map yet, but from what I have read so far it doesn't sound like it will help much. I don't understand why this is an issue, for example the rural area I live in (it's been here about 20 years or more) shows up on google maps fine, and it seems accurate because I have a Garmin 305 fitness gps and when upload running data from it to Garmins site it overlays my running routes over google maps perfectly accurate.

    So why is this area not even showing up on the TomTom?
     
    glen_s, Jul 31, 2008
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  4. glen_s

    ac328

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    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta, Canada
    TomTom Model(s):
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    Sorry, wrong link, try this one:

    https://www.tomtomforums.com/showthread.php?t=10159

    If you're haveing problems with map accuracy and it's a deal breaker, I suggest you go with a Garmin. Their maps come from Navteq and tend to be much more accurate is the US and Canada than Tomtom's which are from TeleAtlas.

    I had a Garmin Nuvi 760 before this and the maps were usually spot on. However the unit itself was too simplistic for my taste.
     
    ac328, Aug 1, 2008
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  5. glen_s

    Buddharay

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    tomtom and teleatlas are aware of the map quality in canada, but it's something that they're constantly working on. user input is becoming key in these sorts of situations - pepole are using mapshare to fill out entire areas that weren't available before. teleatlas is improving their maps constantly, and you'll get the accuracy you're looking for in canada soon.
     
    Buddharay, Aug 1, 2008
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  6. glen_s

    feejo

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    And the proof of all this is web site like google map, mapquest (I bet), yahoo map are powered by Navtec and not Teleatlas. Mapshare is good, but still new and dose not have all power it should have. Wish is creating new streets. But they are certainly using it to create ans SELL new maps. New maps are a waste of $. Let's see you buy a GPS at a certain price, you wait 4 years and you say let's buy a new map. WRONG! Let's buy a new GPS instead, and try to sell your old one. You will spend 100$ on a new map. And GPS prices are falling down really quick, so with your new GPS you will HAVE the most rescent map for free. In bonus you will have all kind of new features and a better GPS that will have a more powerfull processor. Ex: the One XL-S is 266 mhz, the new one xl 330 is running at 400 mhz, alsmot 2x faster. A secure way to get to your 4 years is to buy a extended warranty. Like my xls I have a 4 year, so if the screen break they will replace it with a new one or a similar model. If there is no more XLS on shelf, I will get a XL 330S. Buying a new map every 3 months or even every year is not worth it.
     
    feejo, Aug 3, 2008
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  7. glen_s

    Arno Moderator

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    Good observation but if it is an older Garmin map, it could be the wrong conclusion.
    About March Google maps went from a ?2007 NAVTEQ to a ?2008 NAVTEQ map and moved my street address 86 m to the west and slightly to the south.
    Researching at that thime, before buying a GPS, I eMailed Navteq and asked them why this inaccuracy was introduced into the newer map and sent them a screen print form th eprevious and the newer map.
    The came back quite huffy telling me that they only had 2 persons for the whole Province of Ontario (quite a bit bigger than Texas) and that it would take about 2 years to verify an eMail like mine.

    Funny thing is that the newest maps I can access at this time (although my street address is just as wrong) is Microsoft's live maps even though theirs is also a ?2008 NAVTEQ.

    My guestimate is that it does not depend on th printed copyright notice but on what an offerer is actually paying the map maker.

    Pre March, (at the right street address) Google showed a 2 - 5 year old summer picture of my open pool with a tree almost oblitering the drive way.
    Post March it is the same as Microsoft maps, which had shown a late fall shot of abbout 2 - 3 years old as recognised by that winter pool cover.
    Microsoft's Live Maps in their Bird's eye view shows a picture taken after June last year as it shownns the nice lawn where the pool was filled in in may.
     
    Arno, Aug 3, 2008
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  8. glen_s

    duffer888

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    Alberta Maps

    I have the Go930 with 8.05 maps, and travel all over Alberta on business. I have seldom experienced this 'off road driving', but I have notice that it does occur every now and then (albeit infrequently) when the unit is showing only about 5 satellites. It does not have this problem when there are the usual 8 or more satellites. Again, this does not happen very often. I have never had this problem on the major highways such as the QEII (previously Hwy 2), the Yellowhead (Hwy 16), etc.

    Upgrading your maps might help.





     
    duffer888, Aug 4, 2008
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  9. glen_s

    sundown1

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    Thanks for the post Duffer888: I just purchased a TT730 for a trip east from BC and was a bit concerned if I would run into a prob. It sounds like mounting position may be an issue to insure recieving max satilites. For what it is worth the maps of Vancouver Island are dead on even including public/logging roads!
     
    sundown1, Aug 4, 2008
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  10. glen_s

    glen_s

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    Sundown - My unit showed dead on on all of the roads in BC as well, but I'd like to know how your accuracy is once you hit the AB border, please post on this board if you can. My 720 is only a few months old and I am showing off the road while driving about 30-60% of the time in rural areas, depending on the roads.

    Duffer, I am reluctant to spend that much money on a new map unless I am positive it will rectify the problems. I went on to teleatlas's site and out of curiosity looked up the rural subdivision where I live for example, and it still doesn't exist, so upgrading the maps isn't going to help there. I did let them know about this, as well as the fact that all of the streets in the town that I live in are off by a block or more.
     
    glen_s, Aug 4, 2008
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  11. glen_s

    gerryc

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    tomtom930 From Medicine hat, going to Lethbridge.. the 930 gave the 'parallel to the highway' issue. highway is to the lef, and vehicle is on the right. Then at every approaching intersection, it tells me to turn left.. sort of asking me to rejoin the road that I was already in. This phenomenun stopped when we reached some place (Taber?).. and the vehicle icon finally merged with the road.

    From Coutts AB , going to Medicine hat, along the Veteran's highway? There are portions when 'vehicle not on road in map' occured. So map is not accurate I guess or obsolete.

    We had the printed triptik from CAA so we knew we were on the the right road.

    for now, I just zoom out the map.
     
    gerryc, Aug 4, 2008
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  12. glen_s

    ac328

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    Location:
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    I have the 8.05 map on my 730, and while I haven't been all over Alberta, I was just on Highway 66 inside Kananaskis Country this past long weekend. Again, the "parallel" issue came up.

    And as I said in the other thread on this issue, this is not just an AB thing but has happened to me in SK, MB and northern ON.

    Let's hope the next version of the maps after 8.05 is better.
     
    ac328, Aug 6, 2008
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  13. glen_s

    glen_s

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    I just went to the TeleAtlas site, and when I checked on their map for my rural subdivision I live in, it didn't exist, even though it is over 20 years old. I let them know this via their map insight/feedback program, as well as several places where it shows me well off the road or way out in the lake on the highway where I live. I also let them know that all of our town streets are off by about a city block. Haven't heard back from them yet, but that was only a couple of days ago I let them know this.
     
    glen_s, Aug 6, 2008
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  14. glen_s

    duffer888

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    Map Accuracy - Alberta

    For whatever it's worth, I travel from Edmonton to Ft. McMurray, Grande Prairie and Peace River. I also travel to Red Deer, Calgary and Lethbridge. Generally speaking I have not had the 'off road' issue much, just when the number of satellites are reduced.

    I am currently on vacation and travelled from Edmonton to Kananaskis and Banff, and then onto Kelowna and Penticton. I'm sitting in Fairmont right now before heading back to Banff. I did not experience the 'off road' issue once on this trip. I did however encounter a couple of times when everything disappeared but I think it happened when the 930 lost all the satellite signals. Not surprising I suppose considering I was travelling through the mountains.

    Anyhow, just a thought and I know how it can be irritating to be travelling 'off road', however does this adversely affect the accuracy of getting to your destination. In my view, as long as I am heading in the intended direction and will get to my final destination, it doesn't really matter if the vehicle is travelling 'off road'. Perhaps irritating, yes, but not that important to me.

    Of course it's a different story when all the roads disappear altogether and you find yourself driving in an 'open field'. I've had that happen to me on the highway around Sherwood Park, which is near Edmonton. This is surprising as these roads have been there for years. If it's any consolation, my friends and their Garmins have also experience this with other highways around Edmonton.

    All this to say, I suppose, that nothing is perfect.

    Have a great summer all.

    d.
     
    duffer888, Aug 6, 2008
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  15. glen_s

    glen_s

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    Duffer - if you can on your next trip to Ft Mac or anywhere else northeast of the city, take highway 15 up through Ft Saskatchewan, then turn north at Lamont (you can take the 637 secondary to bypass Lamont by a few km) then up secondary 831 straight north up through Boyle and from there on the 55 and 63 to Ft Mac. I'm curious to see how you are on the 831 between Lamont and Boyle, that is where I am off the road for a great deal of the time, there are some stretches where there is no road showing at all, and this is more or less a very straight road.

    Also, if you want to travel to Ft Mac via 881, then either take 663 across from Boyle to Lac La Biche and up 881 or turn right off of 831 and take 28 to Vilna, then go north on 36 through Lac La Biche. Both of these routes have lots of "off the road" for me. I would also be curious as how yours displays the streets of Lac La Biche, as thats where mine are a block off, and the 881/858 just leaving town shows me about 200 meters out in the lake.

    I am curious to see how yours compares.

    I was just up the Fairmont/Cranbrook route and it was perfectly accurate all the way, as well as all the way across highway 3 to Hope, not once off the road even in the mountains and canyons, except for that brand new stretch between Golden and Field. Just in AB I have run into the off the road issue.
     
    glen_s, Aug 7, 2008
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  16. glen_s

    duffer888

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    Will do. I should be going to Ft. Mac in mid-September.



     
    duffer888, Aug 11, 2008
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  17. glen_s

    GarCor

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    I just looked at several places on Microsoft's Live Map and found it to be just as out of date as Tele atlas, Navteq, google maps etc etc. Soooooo IMO it doesn't mater what map or GPS you have you will find some maps and Gps's better in some areas and other's to be better in different areas. IMO map data will continualy get better in time just like computers, cell phones, etc etc. we just have to be patent.

    We all can help improve the data if we submet corrections in our area to Tele atlas or TT home. or Navteq.
     
    GarCor, Aug 11, 2008
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  18. glen_s

    glen_s

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    I did my second trip through BC, (via slightly different routes) in mid august again and the results were the same, dead-on everywhere, even driving along mountain sides that were heavily treed.

    Just returned from a trip to Airdrie, came back via Drumheller, Stettler and Vegreville. The usual "off the road" showed up on highway 2, streets for Airdrie were accurate for the most part, as was the secondary highway going to Drumheller. North of Drum hit the "off the road" a few times, but not as common as I do further up north where I live. About 1/2 of the small towns I passed through were off by a street/block, about 1/2 were accurate.

    Conclusion so far: If you own a TomTom in AB it's fine for finding an address in the bigger centers, but if you need to find a small town or rural address, it's not at all reliable.
     
    glen_s, Sep 9, 2008
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  19. glen_s

    21rouge

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    I wonder if the just released 810 map will show improvement?
     
    21rouge, Sep 9, 2008
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  20. glen_s

    Buddharay

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    yeah, i'd like to get some light shed on this as well, especially since it seems that mapshare updates are being implemented in the new maps.
     
    Buddharay, Sep 11, 2008
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