WAZE USERS STARTING TO SUCK

BlueV1

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Not questioning you sir; can you tell us how you know these details? :)
 

Mild

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Hmmm, didn't know about #4. Very interesting. I always thought I was helping other Wazers out by removing the pin. Good to know and thanks for the info.

EDIT: Whoops, was just testing out the voice commands for reporting and marked a cop right in front of my house. :facepalm:
 
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CliftonParkGMan

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Over the past month, waze users have not been reporting police, and hazards. Just me. And when I report it, BOOM I get the message "you just helped 8 plus waze users"! Its seems those people are just being lazy and using the app and I've been sending users AHEAD of me bad messages for not reporting a hazard that I now have to deal with THEY PASSED and STAYED SILENT ABOUT.And google maps SUCKS at showing traps and hazards.
I've never had the desire to use WAZE as I do prefer Google Maps /w/ satellite images on my Android Auto. I do use Escort Live and my countermeasures to keep me ticket free.

What I have noticed since Google bought WAZE that the speed trap alerts are enunciated from the Maps app. I have to say these alerts have been for the most part accurate but sometimes a little late.

I anticipate as more users use each platform the reporting will only get better.
-- Double Post Merged: --
Yea, it's like that sometimes. Usually it's freeloader users who like getting alerted but are too lazy to mark anything.
-- Double Post Merged: --

Ewww.... This is the exact reason why speed limits aren't based off of the 85th percentile rule. Soccer mom's freak out when the speed limit should be 40 mph next to their house so they lobby the crap out of the government to lower it. Which in reality makes roads less safe and more congested...
Yes!!! and those Soccer Mons are the ones who will not keep right except to pass. Back in college our professor was running late and people were having discussions about yielding the wenches argued if I am going the speed limit there is no reason for me to pull over.

I see this happen all of the time when I have to pass them on the right. Plus they are the ones on the phone too boot. It is a lack of driving skill to handle your vehicle in the middle lane around truck traffic so they hog the left lane. I literally had one tonight on a 2 lane Interstate. She would not move over and would intentionally slow down when the right lane was occupied. When I was able to pass her she flashed her high beams at me. She was going at the PSL or lower.

They ironically only want to obey the speed limit signs but totally disregard the Keep Right Except to Pass signs :D
 
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BhamGuy

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On interstate I think perhaps the truckers do most of the marking.
Waze needs to make it easier. We need short cuts, one button press mark a LEO. One for each scenario.

What I do when I get on the road is press the alert button / police button / visible button / Later Button. It sits in the top left corner until I select it. Then its pop pop.

Other than the above I still scan as if I don't use Waze. Eyes peeled, mirrors mirror mirrors, brake lights ahead, LEO's in the grass. R3, ALP.
99% sure Waze marks the GPS when you select report.

Later just allows you to submit that report later. It doesn't change the original GPS coordinates.
 

BhamGuy

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Hopefully I can address the points about Waze mentioned in this thread. These answers are for North American Waze users.

1) The minimum time it takes a report to show on another user's app is 90 seconds. So you'll be long gone by the time the cop "sees someone reported them". Go ahead and send it ... waiting means it'll just be that much longer until other users get it.
2) Wazers/reports in your area are by marketing area. I'm sure Waze shares their location and size with advertisers, but it's not public knowledge. They are subject to change. The areas can be quite large. I very sure there are no parameters controlling when Waze shows it - when you have a data connection when you start the app or as soon as you have data, Waze will show it. Waze will never reveal exact usage numbers.
3) I hope everyone who is on this forum would know that lidar is the best thing ever to happen to police. They can now easily and accurately target from farther than most drivers' attention range. That means quicker ticket writing turnover. The days when a cop had to camp are over. That's often why you get there and the cops are no longer there - they've written the ticket and went on to things cops should be doing, like patrolling neighborhoods (hopefully).
4) Reporting "not there" does nothing to other user's apps. They'll still see the report until it automatically expires.
5) Reporting red light/speed cams on the app no longer does anything. If you have one that's missing or shouldn't be there, you need to edit it using the Waze Map Editor or hop on the Waze forum for your state and ask for it to be done. Mobile cameras will not be marked.
6) Waze has had voice reporting for a while. How it works depends on how you have it set up in the Waze settings screen. On mine, not liking Waze/Google listening inside my car all the time, I have to tap the (search) microphone then say "Report police". That's it. I don't know of a way to put comments on a report via voice, though.
7) Years ago, Waze routing used to be limited to 500 miles. Now it is unlimited. Note that when you request a route, any parts of the map needed for your route that you don't already have are downloaded to your device. So on top of the longer time to do the route calculations, you have to wait for the download. When the routing server is busy (say, rush hour), getting a route does take longer. For long routes, requesting them on a high-speed connection such as a land-based WiFi is recommended.
8) There is no reporting "reputation" not related to map editor rank. Waze tracks "Not There" reports for statistical purposes, but there is no automatic banning or that kind of thing. While you might get results writing customer support about a problem Wazer, the various types of banning only happen through the intervention of a map editor and that group does not typically go on road reports. However, you can be throttled by the system automatically. For example, typically you can only report prices for about 10 gas station every 10 minutes.
9) The user txemt was using unconventional map editing methods to get points. Years ago, it used to be easy to get away with, but now they've been banned.
10) Yes, the moment you press the report button the location is saved.
11) Yes, Waze is always adding features. They just added toll prices, which no other app has. Very nice!!
12) Yes, people file false and dumb reports. A LEO buddy of mine jokes that anytime he forgets where he parked his marked car in his apartment complex, he just opens Waze.

Please let me know if I didn't cover your question/concern.
Great list. I incorrectly assumed marking "Not there" would be part of a process that allowed for removing a report that was inaccurate (or no longer accurate), such as "three Waze Users marking Not There removes the report." That's disappointing.
 

BlueV1

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1) The minimum time it takes a report to show on another user's app is 90 seconds. So you'll be long gone by the time the cop "sees someone reported them". Go ahead and send it ... waiting means it'll just be that much longer until other users get it.
Is this a mechanism of the Waze app itself or is it that 90 seconds have to elapse before the report is added to the data stream?
I ask because if it's supposed to be a limit in the data that is broadcast out, I've seen my own marks arrive in the data stream in less than 10 seconds most times. (With a good signal of course)

What mechanism prevents another Waze client from seeing the data in the stream before that 90 seconds elapses if it polls for info 15 seconds later?

I'd like to see where this concept is discussed in regards to Waze. Any links by chance?
 

lastdeadmouse

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Great list. I incorrectly assumed marking "Not there" would be part of a process that allowed for removing a report that was inaccurate (or no longer accurate), such as "three Waze Users marking Not There removes the report." That's disappointing.
It does kind of work that way. Each not there subtracts 5 minutes from the alert's displayed time.
 

LeftLaneInPA

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They ironically only want to obey the speed limit signs but totally disregard the Keep Right Except to Pass signs :D
Better watch out, or she's going to insist to speak to your manager.

I've become disillusioned with Waze lately due to its routing. It used to be pretty good, but lately it's been gleefully routing me through traffic jams caused by accidents or road construction. My wife has been experiencing the same thing.

Trying to get a route for a long road trip (more than +150 miles)? Good luck. Get used to seeing "Oops! Server timed out!" messages until you get closer to your destination.
 

RadarNinja

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I've been a senior Waze map editor for years.

The 90 second update interval was shared by Waze staff. The app checks for better routes and data about that often. I'm sure you can imagine if every app - millions of people - were requesting a route recalc and data every second, the system wouldn't be feasible. Feel free to test. Report something and see how long it takes to appear on your friend's app. Waze is trying to improve traffic detection lag time, so I hope that means the polling interval goes down soon.

If you read the Waze wiki and forums, you can pick up on most of the information. Some of the more obscure things come from Waze staff. The best way to get information from Waze staff and those-in-the-know is to come to a map editing meetup. Meetups are free, though of course you need to be at least occasionally editing the map. Waze provides hotel, food, transportation, and swag. If you're into maps and practical uses of technology, they are really fun.

I haven't heard about timeout issues in a long time. And recently they basically increased the timeout to unlimited so it doesn't time out. So if you're getting "Oops! Server timed out!" at this point, you've got a pretty crummy data signal or something else on your device sucking up your data bandwidth. For long routes you haven't done before, I suggest requesting your route on a land-based (high-speed) WiFi. The app is going to download the map, and it's a lot of data. Once you have the map data for a route and there is nothing new, the time will be only to calculate the route.

That bears a little explanation. The Waze map consists of 1km x 1km squares called tiles. So if you're going 100km, that's at minimum 100 tiles the app needs to have. Every tile is version stamped, so the first thing your app does is compare the version of the tiles it has with the current version of those tiles. If the version on your device is older than the server or non-existent, it requests the tile. By caching the tiles on your device, Waze ensures that even if you lose data, the app continues to work.

If you feel Waze is routing you through the worst traffic, tap the bottom of the screen, then tap Routes. You'll see your route at the top along with the next two fastest routes. Try one of the others and see if Waze is wrong. I can tell you from experience probably not. Even at the speeds I drive and sometimes going "secret back ways", it's pretty rare to be able to shave more than 3-4 minutes per hour off the Waze estimate. This is because as far as I know, Waze is the only app that uses true speeds, not speed limits, to estimate your time, so because almost everyone speeds, that makes it really hard to beat. The only objective way to prove that any navigation app is sending you the worst way is to have someone take another route choice at the exact same time. Just because you're in bumper-to-bumper traffic doesn't mean it's the worst bumper-to-bumper traffic.
 
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Bocephus

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it's pretty rare to be able to shave more than 3-4 minutes per hour off the Waze estimate. This is because as far as I know, Waze is the only app that uses true speeds
THANK YOU! I've been wondering that since using the app, and always thought to myself... Hmmm. I don't do the PSL so how is Waze accurate to almost the minute???

Also not a soul here who wouldn't say the ETA of Waze is a personal challenge.
 

LeftLaneInPA

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If you feel Waze is routing you through the worst traffic, tap the bottom of the screen, then tap Routes. You'll see your route at the top along with the next two fastest routes. Try one of the others and see if Waze is wrong. I can tell you from experience probably not. Even at the speeds I drive and sometimes going "secret back ways", it's pretty rare to be able to shave more than 3-4 minutes per hour off the Waze estimate. This is because as far as I know, Waze is the only app that uses true speeds, not speed limits, to estimate your time, so because almost everyone speeds, that makes it really hard to beat. The only objective way to prove that any navigation app is sending you the worst way is to have someone take another route choice at the exact same time. Just because you're in bumper-to-bumper traffic doesn't mean it's the worst bumper-to-bumper traffic.
Sorry, I respectfully disagree here. Just today this happened to me: I was on my commute to work and I see traffic stopped in front of me. I glance at the waze map and see a lot of "standstill traffic" and "construction" pins ahead of me. I usually roll up at my office at 0840. Waze was giving me an ETA of 0904. Yikes!

Luckily for me, this was taking place in my home territory and I know the back roads, and an access road was right in front of me. I quickly turn off and start heading down one of these back roads.

Waze: (beep) (shows new route)

The new ETA? Now 0843. I literally shaved off 21 minutes by taking the back roads because the main route was essentially a parking lot as (I found out when I got to work) the construction crews had both lanes closed to re-grade the pavement.

Last week the wife was driving to work to Philadelphia. She gets stuck behind an accident which is pinned in Waze as a "major accident". The cops are re-directing traffic around it. As she's following the detour, Waze was actively trying to turn her around and route her through the accident site.
 

BlueV1

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The 90 second update interval was shared by Waze staff. The app checks for better routes and data about that often. I'm sure you can imagine if every app - millions of people - were requesting a route recalc and data every second, the system wouldn't be feasible. Feel free to test. Report something and see how long it takes to appear on your friend's app.
Bear with me here, I think then we are in agreement generally, but that does not suggest that there's a guaranteed 90+ second delay between two clients.

What I am getting at is this:
Every active Waze client is polling a minimum of every 90 seconds. I can agree with that idea.
NOT every Waze client is polling at 11:00:00, then 11:01:30, then 11:03:00, etc. There are 90 different slots per polling cycle that clients can exist in.
Someone else might be polling at 11:00:18, then 11:01:48, then 11:03:18, etc.
A third might be polling at 11:01:35, then 11:03:05, then 11:04:35 and so on.
It's luck of the draw which slot your client occupies and unless you can force it to exact polling times, testing with two clients open is not enough of a control. Even 90 clients open in one room doesn't guarantee that all slots are occupied as there will likely be many that poll the exact same time as another.

If I report at 11:00:01 and the data stream contains my report at 11:00:11; any client that polls after that time will get the report. I do have a lot of experience of my own reports being present in the data stream within 10 seconds typically.
To clarify that I'm not guessing here; You might not be seeing my signature; I've driven with Waze for over 340,000 miles since 2014.

Does all of that make sense? Or, perhaps there's something I'm overlooking? Feel free to correct me if I'm missing something! :)
 

wjbertrand

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I haven't heard about timeout issues in a long time. And recently they basically increased the timeout to unlimited so it doesn't time out.
That's and interesting comment because I've only started to receive these "Oops Server Time Out Errors" recently. I was trying to lay in a route from San Diego to Ventura and the app timed out every time. It wouldn't plot a route until I was partway through Los Angeles - more than half way to my destination. The weird thing is that it plotted a route from Ventura to San Diego a couple of days earlier without issue.
 

RadarNinja

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@LeftLaneInPA Was your shortcut through private property? Waze, and probably most navigation products, will never suggest that.

Other things to consider:
1) When did the backup begin? It takes Waze approximately six minutes to detect traffic above historical levels and start delivering reroutes to users.
2) Was a reroute even possible? Again, it's not going to send drivers through private property no matter how severe the backup. Sometimes the only way to reroute is a U-turn and most areas are mapped so U-turns will not be suggested unless the road is wide enough to ensure they can be done in a single maneuver. Usually that means the road has to have a median.
3) While 21 minutes is not trivial, Waze has a feature called "detour prevention" that will keep it from telling the driver to get off and right back onto the same road to save only a trival amount of time.

Sorry about the incident with your wife's trip. If the road is closed, please use the road closure report on the app. For most users, it's a vote. Once it gets enough votes, the road will close in the routing server and then rerouting begins immediately. While there are many dedicated volunteers attempting to get emergency road closures such as that into the app, we all have work, fun, and families to attend to, so we're not going to catch all of them. That and DOTs and emergency services are absolutely horrendous about posting closures in a timely fashion even if they do have a social media account, which most do not. And nevermind the fact that sometimes the information they publish is wrong. On more than one occasion I've seen an official government source say a freeway is closed in one direction when in fact it was the other direction. That's a huge error. Government errors like that delay volunteers from getting the closure into the app (correctly). While Waze volunteers love helping people, obviously they cannot have a life and watch every DOT camera in the area at the same time (assuming the accident was even near a camera). It sounds like you're expecting Waze to know about every emergency road closure everywhere in the world. It's just not possible.

The reason I say closure and not traffic backup is this. Please understand that the way "live" navigation apps like Waze work is if no traffic is detected on a road segment, they revert to using historical traffic data. In the event of a wreck or construction closure, there is no traffic there - it's cordoned off. So to the routing server it looks like free sailing. Imagine a 1-mile section of road is divided into 10 segments. The accident happens on the second segment so police close off that and the remainder of the 1-mile section (so 9 segments total). So when a routing server looks at that, it thinks, "well, the drive time on the first segment is really tough, but there's no traffic at all on the remaining 9 segments, so let's send people that way". That's why telling Waze there is a closure is critical. It overrides that calculation and tells the routing server "no matter how light the traffic looks here, don't route people this way". There's just not enough information being plugged into the system to make routing around emergency closures very reliable. But your contributions can help.

If you wish to PM me with the location of your construction incident, I'd be glad to confirm it is mapped correctly.
-- Double Post Merged: --
@BlueV1, a Waze staff member was asked how long it takes for reports to show on the app and they said about 90 seconds. No follow-up was asked, so that's all I know. Also, that was a couple of years ago, so as they've improved the system it's possible it's even better now. Obviously, anything a user reports appears on their app immediately because well, it doesn't have to fly around the ether first.

The question in this forum was whether a cop would know that the person driving by them right now reported them and the answer is no - it does not instantaneously appear on other apps.
 
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LeftLaneInPA

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@LeftLaneInPA Was your shortcut through private property? Waze, and probably most navigation products, will never suggest that.
No, the entire trip was on public roadways.
1) When did the backup begin? It takes Waze approximately six minutes to detect traffic above historical levels and start delivering reroutes to users.
According to the bit I found in the paper earlier, it was supposed to start at around 0730. The point where I ended up getting stuck in traffic was 1.5 miles from the actual construction area, around 0820-ish.
2) Was a reroute even possible? Again, it's not going to send drivers through private property no matter how severe the backup. Sometimes the only way to reroute is a U-turn and most areas are mapped so U-turns will not be suggested unless the road is wide enough to ensure they can be done in a single maneuver. Usually that means the road has to have a median.
The road I ended up taking was approximately, oh, 75 feet ahead of me when I turned off. I remember that because I actually cut into the opposing lane to get to it. Fortunately for me, there was no traffic whatsoever in that lane at the time.

As for the road I was on originally, it was a standard two lane road with traffic going in both direction. No center median.
Sorry about the incident with your wife's trip. If the road is closed, please use the road closure report on the app.
In my case, it wasn't really closed. They were letting traffic move occasionally when they had the opportunity to open one lane. But as they were grading the entire road, they couldn't do that very often.

As for my wife, she's a very "casual" user. Reporting a road as closed is, um, above her patience for using apps.
 

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@LeftLaneInPA, well that situation seems odd. Perhaps there were not enough Wazers on that street for Waze to recognize the issue?

if you're aware of a closure in advance or an ongoing one, definitely post it on your state Waze forum. Please link to any supporting information, such as a news story. Someone will take care of it, usually in less than a couple of days. Please note we only do complete road closures, not lane closures.

Your state forum, which I assume is Pennsylvania, is here.
 

BlueV1

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The question in this forum was whether a cop would know that the person driving by them right now reported them and the answer is no - it does not instantaneously appear on other apps.
Due to my own experiences running two clients with different credentials at the same time for 18 months, and the concepts behind the 90 second max polling rate, AND the principals of load distribution on networks; I'm going to say that I disagree. That's nothing personal of course! I appreciate the discussion!

Simplistically, I can see how a client only polls a maximum of every 90 seconds. Maybe less frequently if the client isn't moving. Bigger picture and considering that we don't know where that particular officer's polling slot is, I do believe at this moment that he could get the notification as soon as it populates in the data stream and his client polls. Maybe as soon as 10 seconds.

If I may; I've described how it CAN happen based on what we know. There might be more to it. If it CAN happen as I've described, I think we all should be aware that the possibility is there as opposed to saying it's not possible and then one of us finding out that it is. Better safe than sorry!
 

LeftLaneInPA

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@LeftLaneInPA, well that situation seems odd. Perhaps there were not enough Wazers on that street for Waze to recognize the issue?
Honestly don't know. But there were multiple "standstill traffic" and "road construction" pins on the map.
 

BlueV1

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I imagine like in most situations, Waze works based off of some ideal concepts but in practice is not as absolutely perfect. The map editors definitely help out!
 

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Waze works really well in my area. It seems there are many users who are good at reporting.
 

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