Airtel Smartdrive Apps Brings Voice Navigation To Your Smartphone

Telecom Operator Airtel really seems to be getting the importance of Apps. Having the largest market share in India, Airtel recently launched their My Airtel App, to manage all your Airtel services from a single device and wherever you are. Today, they continued their slew of consumer friendly initiatives by launching Airtel Smartdrive, a full fledged Navigation Application for smartphones in India.

Here are some of the salient features of Airtel Smartdrive:

  • Points of Interest (POI): This lets users find locations of significance around them like Petrol Pumps, Theatres, Malls etc. This is free of cost for Airtel Users without any subscription needed.
  • Voice Navigation: The main feature of Smartdrive is Turn-By-Turn Navigation. As the name suggests, this works as you are travelling and guides you on your route to your destination. Since it is Voice Based, you don’t have to keep looking at your phone for directions.
  • Live Traffic Info: The app uses Historical Traffic Trends and takes into account GPS devices on the road you are looking at to tell you the Live Traffic Information of that road. This is very similar to the way Google collects its Live Traffic data. However, we reached out to an Airtel representative who confirmed to us that they do not use Google’s Traffic info, but rather their own.

This is only available in Bangalore, Delhi NCR and Mumbai, but other metros lke Hyderabad, Chennai and Pune will be added by December 2012.

  • It also has something called a Trip Recorder that keeps track of where you have gone (and could lead to privacy concerns)
Now here comes the crux: these services will not be free of charge. You have to pay extra for Traffic and extra for Navigation. Traffic Data can be purchased as a Daily Pack of Rs. 3 and a Monthly Pack of Rs. 49.  navigation can be purchased at a Daily Pack of Rs. 10 or a Monthly Pack of Rs. 99.
According to the Compatibility Chart, it is available for Symbian, Android and Blackberry. An iOS version is supposed to be in the works. No word on Windows Phone. You can refer to the FAQ’s Airtel has posted for the Airtel Smartdrive app over here.

While the app offering may look attractive, if you are an Android user, we feel the Google Maps navigation experience that is being offered Free Of Charge is good enough for you not to need something like this. The same goes for Symbian users, who have the highly acclaimed Nokia Maps. If you are a Blackberry user, you may want to check this service out though.

Image Courtesy | gizbot

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