Road rage increases, and GPS may have the cure

According to a new bit of research, bad driving makes us angry, and usually while we’re driving. Is it possible that a dedicated GPS could help out?

This week, Navman has discovered what makes people angry while driving, with road rage attributed to frustrations during drive. You’re probably already aware of that, and if you’re reading this now while you’re in a car behind the wheel, stop, because that’s silly and makes everyone else mad.

If you’re not, though, and you know exactly what grinds your gears while you shift gears, you might be interested to learn that you’re not alone, with 98 percent of people surveyed finding that drivers either not indicating at all or doing it too late makes them angry.

Road rage also comes from speed and direction mishaps, with 96 percent of drivers in the research getting frustrated by drivers going too slow in a fast lane, while a slightly smaller amount (93 percent) found it annoying when drivers didn’t know where they were going.

“Perhaps they should have a GPS,” the grouch in you says angrily, and perhaps it is right.

Navman — which makes GPS units — doesn’t have a solution for standard frustrations, with these running from traffic to kids being noisy to speeding cars, but it has pointed out that features of a modern day GPS can at least help alleviate stress by pointing out different routes and calculating arrival time, helping you to focus on the GPS and what’s happening on the road, with that one the most important point.


As for the GPS itself, that’s a category that has to change to bring in new customers, especially since many of us are using our phones to get the job done, bringing in that whole convergence factor into the car environment.

There’s no doubting that phones are part of the reason that GPS sales have slowed, with tablets second to that, but Navman’s Australian Director Wendy Hammond remains convinced that GPS units provide an edge that other smart devices can’t always match.

“We’re still leading the way in this field,” she said, adding that “a Navman GPS will provide much better and more accurate guidance on where to go, when to turn and how far before you reach your destination.

“Moreover, many of our premium products come with where to find the nearest petrol station or ATM, Zomato restaurant guides and a host of other features that you can access on the one device (out of the box) rather than switching in and out of various apps.”

Features like the take-out locations — for when the kids are being noisy — and petrol stations further down the track — for when you’ve just noticed the gauge is reading close to empty — are the sort of things GPS makers need to capitalise on, as well as cameras, because staying competitive in this area and beating the phone means the GPS needs to become an indispensable tool for driving, rather than the one we carry with us where ever we go.

“Over the past 12 months we’ve been investing in research and development around digital drive recorders,” said Hammond.

“This is an area of huge growth in Australia and while this started with drivers simply wanting to the ability to record their driving to protect themselves against insurance claims, we’ll see some exciting new features added to these products later this year that will really expand their already strong appeal and really make driving much better, safer and more enjoyable for Australians which is, after all, what Navman has always been about.”