Apple caused a wee bit of excitement earlier this summer when several Apple Maps cars briefly were stationed in the city as part of capturing data from our corner of the province.
Now today another well-known mapping company is turning heads with a vehicle spotted this afternoon on city streets with a similar-looking, can’t-help-but-notice roof mounted device that's on a cross-continent trek for a different purpose.
Whereas Apple was capturing data for its Apple Maps service, TomTom vehicles like the one presently in the city are being used to record data that will eventually be used to power navigation in the self-driving vehicles that are inevitably going to be on roads in the coming years. More specifically TomTom is in the process of building a service known as “HD Map,” which on its website it describes as ‘allowing autonomous vehicles to become location-aware, environment-aware and path-aware.’ Vehicles capturing data are said to make use of a variety of sensors including cameras.
A pic during Apple Maps’ time in Brandon indicated that at least four vehicles were stationed in the city for a brief period in July. As now one single TomTom vehicle has been noted.
More on TomTom’s HD Map initiative can be seen at https://www.tomtom.com/automotive/automotive-solutions/automated-driving/hd-map-roaddna/