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Free real-time traffic reports? We wish

Some GPS devices to offer service right out of the box

Porsche P9611: Guinea pig

We've often thought that real-time traffic reports was an obvious use of interactive technologies, but for some reason they're still not universal. (These thoughts typically come to us while stuck on a freeway, which is often.) But a German GPS software company called Navigon says it will "radically change" this sluggish pace of development with a free service that will be offered with GPS services right out of the box, according to Twice.

The company, which is working with ClearChannel's Real Time Traffic, has made a deal with the Porsche Design Group as the first brand to include the service with its Porsche P9611 navigation device. Navigon is also offering Zagat Survey restaurant guide information along with traffic reports, in case you need to change your reservations at the last-minute because of traffic jams.

This service sounds great, but we just hope that ClearChannel's information is more current than the local radio reports we typically hear. Maybe it's just us, but those dispatches almost always seem to report accidents and jams that have long been cleared. It's all academic anyway, at least for now, until Navigon's service gets into other gadgets: The Porsche P9611 is selling for $899. So the definition of "free" is, to say the least, a fluid one.