Monday, January 5, 2009

My day out with GPS in Hyderabad

Hey all Wish you all a very happy new year 2009. Hope your resolutions last at least through first couple of weeks of the year :).

I recently managed to get a 30 day free trial license to use GPS on my N95 mobile phone. I've been in Hyderabad for almost 4 months now however i am still not very comfortable with finding my way out in Hyderabad. Now today i had a doctor's appointment at 4.00 PM (at Banjara Hills) and an official appointment at 5.00 PM (at Gachibowli). Since I was driving with time limits i decided to use the GPS to avoid asking people for the way to Banjara hills. (Its quite normal and convenient to ask your way in India if you don't know it. People are more then happy to help). Now first thing which i had discovered when i had installed the maps a couple of days back was that for N95 maps Hyderabad ends near Madhapur (@N95 Maps Team :- Wake up.... most of the people using your maps will be living and traveling near Hi Tech city, Gachibowli, Miyapur, Madhapur area)
So i decided that i'll drive till near Jubilee hills and then GPS should start guiding me. As it happened as soon as i was near Jubilee hills the voice guidance started. Now this GPS software took me inside a slum with its directions. I didn't even have a choice to make a U turn since the slum lanes were so narrow that one can't make a U turn on a single road and to get out you need to be an expert. The guidance then maneuvered me across the slum quite efficiently but it was hell stupid experience. After i crossed the slum at a speed less then 5 Km/Hour it took me out of the slum from a road which was so steep that my car was fumbling to climb up even in 1st gear. I somehow managed to maneuver my car on that road without coming back and hurting the car or other people.
Then after some more untarred roads i finally found a wide road and then after crossing that road the guidance was leading me to another slum, and so, i gave up on GPS. I fell back on the good old way of asking people and driving and i was at the doctor's place in no time. However the whole GPS idea got me late by almost 20 mins. for the appointment. Now this cascaded as doctor was busy with other patients and of course i missed my official appointment because of that. The worst was yet to come. I decided to inform my colleagues on a mail that i would be late however installing GPS had messed up with my mail4exchange software and the phone kept crashing :(. And now it seems i have to uninstall the maps somehow and pray that mail4exchange works without a firmware re installation.
Also once i switch on the GPS if i try to use my memory card in phone for data transfer it keeps saying that card is in use by phone. So i need to restart the phone before i can even think of doing data transfer.
So overall GPS voice guidance for N95 sucks and i wouldn't recommend anyone to use it in Hyderabad at least.