Increasingly, our cars are driving for us, and now they may figure out where we need to go. Inrix, an aggregator of traffic, parking and other road information, has launched a new service it calls Autotelligent which can learn where you like to go, and proactively give you directions.
Autotelligent uses machine learning to understand a driver's preferences, and will tailor the routes it offers in navigation for each driver. Steve Banfield, Inrix chief marketing officer, says of the service that it "acts on your behalf," potentially reserving a parking spot or guiding you to your preferred gasoline station.
Current navigation systems and apps merely tell you the fastest route to a programmed destination, and show destination search results in a set radius from your location. Autotelligent makes use of machine learning, where a computer can predict the route and destinations you want based on past behavior. Machine learning is being used in a variety of areas, from speech to image recognition, helping computers better comprehend the world.
Banfield offered a few different scenarios where an Autotelligent-equipped navigation system could assist a driver. If you set a restaurant in a downtown area as a destination, Autotelligent could step in and give you a parking option near that restaurant. If you had driven there before, it might even know if you prefer street parking over a parking garage, and help find you a spot. If you preferred a parking garage, Banfield says the system could reserve a spot for you.
Autotelligent can also learn your tolerance for traffic, watching your driving behavior to see if you always want to avoid a traffic jam, even if the alternative route would mean a longer drive to your destination, and suggesting those routes in the future. By scanning your online calendar, Autotelligent can proactively set routes to your appointments. The service will also take into account intermodal routing, incorporating walking and public transit depending on your preferences.
Banfield said the Autotelligent service takes three to five real world instances of watching driving behavior to learn a person's preferences.
Inrix did not announce any specific automakers deploying Autotelligent. Audi currently uses Inrix to show parking availability, and Inrix's predictive traffic services are used in navigation systems from many automakers.