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 traffic delay times

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
rpagels Posted - 12 oct. 2007 : 21:45:13
Does the nuvi 660 show traffic delay times while on a route using total traffic network? Mine only shows a 1 minute delay per incedent no matter how bad the traffic is. I am just tring to find out if this is nowmal.

48   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
dwshouston Posted - 24 déc. 2007 : 18:00:39
I live in Houstton, have a gtm-20 on a Nuvi 660. I gives me delays that are fairly accurate. Longest delays I have seen are 58 minutes to to traffic accidents.
salsaguy Posted - 17 déc. 2007 : 20:55:40
Good article regarding traffic on GPS's
salsaguy Posted - 29 nov. 2007 : 20:47:48
I guess you could be right
I guess I never noticed it before because even when I had traffic avoidance OFF, I never had a total trip delay greater than 5 mins because of the 1 min delay bug.
The most I usually saw was three 1 min delays on my route totaling 3 mins..
kappadappa Posted - 28 nov. 2007 : 21:55:01
Salsa - this is not new behavior. It did the same thing before the 4.20 patch.

I have had my Traffic Avoidance unchecked for a long time now, since I prefer to select when to re-route myself. I got the verbal "Traffic alert: xx minute delay" whenever I had traffic avoidance unchecked and I was on a planned route. If I was not on a planned route, then I would get a verbal "Traffic alert: slow traffic ahead". It's been doing this for a couple of months, ever since I started unchecking Traffic Avoidance.
salsaguy Posted - 28 nov. 2007 : 20:43:19
Ive noticed that since the upgrade to the v4.2 patch (for the 6xx's), if you plan a route and have your Avoidance setting for Traffic turned OFF, and there is traffic on your route that is greater than 5 mins, (or if there was a 3 min delay and it increased to >5 mins) it will now VERBALLY warn you and say "Traffic Alert; 10 minute delay." (or whatever the actual delay time was.

It never did that before. Before it would only give the verbal "Traffic Alert..." warning if you DIDNT have a planned route and you were just driving around and then you went on a highway and encountered traffic, it would tell you/speak up with the verbal warning.

Now that the new patch v4.2 has more accurate traffic delay info (no more 1 min delays), the nuvi is much more agressive to re-route you around the traffic if you keep the Traffic Avoidance setting to ON, so now I normally just leave it off and manually re-route myself if the delay time is excessive for my personal situation

This is how I found out about this new verbal warning when IN route.

If I dont do this, it will want to take me off the highway and onto the slower side streets to avoid a traffic delay (since it doesnt know the delays/speeds of the streets .. which then ends up taking you LONGER to get around)

Please try this yourself and respond back with your findings

Aconite Posted - 19 nov. 2007 : 02:42:04
Thanks everyone for the reply.

I am up in Ottawa now and saw in Toronto and Ottawa the FM traffic receive a few little details like construction, but according to the fm traffic website, the service is really not available on Sundays.

I certainly don't expect the 660 with traffic to find me a fast route through Toronto on a Friday afternoon during rush hour! But I hope it would alert me if there is an accident on the 401 and give me the option to get off the 401 is traffic is at a stand still and take the side streets until I am passed it.

Since the trip back is really going to be my only chance to play with the traffic features, I just wanted to get an idea how they worked and what to expect.

Thanks for the info
salsaguy Posted - 17 nov. 2007 : 10:31:09
I still have yet to hear the "a better route is available" in my 3 months of use with my 680

I think that only happens if you have planned a route and start driving and there is no traffic (or only minor traffic) on your route and then a HUGE accident or road closure happens a bit later (with a traffic delay larger than its default set threshold delay time) and then it chimes in telling you its best NOT to stick to the initial route it told you earlier.

trafficinfo Posted - 17 nov. 2007 : 01:52:20
petlaur: a better route found has nothing to do with traffic. i have seen it before having traffic working a coupe of times. another member in the nuvi forums explains more about it.

Aconite: As soon as you get closer to Toronto , coming from London via 401 , I would say after you pass Guelph line (Hwy 6) the free 3 months trial will be activated. And of course the 660 will reroute you automatically from there all the way to Oshawa (hwy 115) where you more likely loose the signal again. It will recalculate in the background and in 401 case will more likely make you change from collectors to express or viceversa as needed. In Ottawa it will do the same , it is constantly optimizing the route every time it gets a new traffic message or a cancellation for a traffic event that cleared.
petlaur Posted - 16 nov. 2007 : 20:09:32
Originally posted by Aconite

Question ...

I currently have the 660 and the three month trial of traffic. I live in London, Ontario where traffic is not available. However, traffic is available in Toronto and Ottawa. Unfortunately, not on Sundays when I will be making my trip to Ottawa!

I was wondering if I made a route from London to Ottawa. If I hit Toronto and my route of heavily congested, would the Nuvi automatically reroute me around it if I had traffic avoidance set to on? Or do I have to create a new route to Ottawa from where I was and the nuvi would then choose the best route?

On my return trip from Ottawa in a couple of weeks, I will be hitting Toronto at rush hour on a Friday and just wondering if the Nuvi will automatically reroute me or not.

I can't confirm this 100% but my 660 has sometimes prompted me with "a better route found" and then given me a choice of either selecting it or not. The time I chose the better route I saved perhaps 10 - 15 minutes time on my commute to a store. I live in Greater Vancouver, B.C. and we do not have the traffic reporting service for the nuvi either. I also have my unit set on "avoid traffic" and the occasions when "a better route found" has popped up is when I've encountered significant traffic congestion. This is one of the hidden gems of these units.

NanaimoRick Posted - 16 nov. 2007 : 15:53:17
Having been born and raised in London, I would be interested in how any device can route you around Toronto traffic on any day and especially Friday during rush hour. When I left London 6 years ago the 'rush' in Toronto was approximately 23 hours a day. Assuming things have only got worse, I'd get on 407 going and coming and just pay the toll.
Aconite Posted - 16 nov. 2007 : 12:49:20
Question ...

I currently have the 660 and the three month trial of traffic. I live in London, Ontario where traffic is not available. However, traffic is available in Toronto and Ottawa. Unfortunately, not on Sundays when I will be making my trip to Ottawa!

I was wondering if I made a route from London to Ottawa. If I hit Toronto and my route of heavily congested, would the Nuvi automatically reroute me around it if I had traffic avoidance set to on? Or do I have to create a new route to Ottawa from where I was and the nuvi would then choose the best route?

On my return trip from Ottawa in a couple of weeks, I will be hitting Toronto at rush hour on a Friday and just wondering if the Nuvi will automatically reroute me or not.
salsaguy Posted - 16 nov. 2007 : 06:13:43
All - So have your routes been changed since upgraded to the the v4.2 version due to the traffic info you are getting now?
salsaguy Posted - 14 nov. 2007 : 04:47:21
What a difference this traffic delay patch (to go to 4.20 on the 6xx makes)!!!

I simulated 2 routes, both BEFORE and AFTER I upgraded my 680 with the v4.2 patch.

See screenshots below to see what an impact this has made.
This will DRASTICALLY change our routing now due to the increased and CORRECT traffic info now.

Route # 1 - A trip of about 50-60 miles covering 3 freeways (time 7pm)

Route # 2 - A trip of about 30 miles covering 3 freeways during normal after work traffic (7pm)

Here are the screenshots:

Route # 1 (BEFORE patch) - 7 delays at 1 min each = 7 mins total delay time for the trip.
Not likely :

Route # 1 (AFTER patch) - 5 delays with different delay times for each totaling 11 mins delay for entire trip. Much better:

Route # 2 (BEFORE patch) - 4 delays with 1 min each delay for a total of 4 mins total delay on the route. Totally wrong! (If you know anything about travelling the 5 frwy north in rush hour traffic)

Route # 2 (AFTER patch) - Only 3 delays BUT a total of 34 mins total delay time for trip!! Thats more realistic ! (Just look at that sea of red Im driving into)

1st delay segment shown on the new after patch route. Definitely not a 1 min delay here!

BTW - I had to turn off Traffic avoidance on the Route # 2 AFTER patch as the nuvi wanted to reroute me to avoid the bad traffic from the beginning (which its supposed to do - if it had good data to work with). I turned traffic avoid OFF to show the apples to apples comparison here to demonstrate how bad the delay times were before this bug fix.

Enjoy your new and much improved travels tomorrow and the rest of the weeks to come.
NanaimoRick Posted - 13 nov. 2007 : 23:00:32
No longer appears to be a map problem. See
salsaguy Posted - 13 nov. 2007 : 20:04:19
Wilmanwar -
You will know if you have an "early version of the maps" most likely based on your purchased date or when you upgraded your nuvi with the 2008 maps.

The 2008 maps came out around August/Sept to be able to order as an upgrade map DVD from Garmin.

I bought my new 680 in July/August so the ones that were manufactured and had it preinstalled during the June/July/Aug/Sep time frame are most likely the bad ones.
Might be able to go back a few pages worth on this thread to get your answer (its just for the 2008 maps):
salsaguy Posted - 13 nov. 2007 : 20:00:57
Can I get the name of the Garmin support person who helped you with the 1 min traffic delay issue so I can "name drop" that back to support on the ticket I submitted unsucessfully for my issue?
I have some screenshots as well to send to them this time.

BTW, did Mapsource program come on the fix/patch DVD they sent you? This might be a way to get it finally without pulling teeth from them.

trafficinfo Posted - 13 nov. 2007 : 18:57:39
I have a c550 with v8 maps in Toronto and the highest delay has been 3 or 4 minutes. Most of the time 1 minute eventhough should be more . Now here in Toronto we only have TTN via RDS-TMC and it is my understanding that the RDS-TMC protocol only sends this kind of info: Location Code, Event Code , Direction (+ or -) and Duration (length in meters of the queue). In other words I do not see in the bit secuence of an RDS-TMC transmition any bits indicating any delay time therefore DELAY TIMES are only estimates calculated by the GPS firmware using the lenght data and the average speed data to calculate it.

Feel free to correct me if I am wrong.

By the way in Toronto we do get Slow traffic events reported so there is Flow Info for major highways here but most of the time on 1 minute delay. For accurate delay times they need to broadcast either the delay time or the average flow speed as MSN does in certain markets. But unfortuannaelly RDS-TMC does have that capability in the current version of the protocol. Tomtom is implementing what they call HD traffic to correct that among other limitations of the RDS-TMC system.

As an example a Tomtom 720 using the Tomtom Plus traffic via GPRS cellphone connection DOES REPORT LENGHT OF THE QUEUE AND DELAY TIMES , nevertheless in the same major markets using the same provider TTN , the tomtom RDS-TMC version DOES not report delay times as accurate, only estimates.

Just my more than 2 cents, lol lol lol lol.
wilmanwar Posted - 13 nov. 2007 : 15:57:07
How would I be able to tell if I have the early version of the 2008 maps????
salsaguy Posted - 13 nov. 2007 : 06:22:34
Dewi, they replied back as if it was just an issue in Canada but it actually affects ALL users with early 2008 maps on their units.

Dewi Posted - 12 nov. 2007 : 17:11:56
Here's the response I got from Garmin:

Subject: All traffic delays 1 minute

Whenever I use the traffic function, I am not forwarned of traffic delays when it is clearly along my destination route. I was wondering if the problem is caused by problems with early version of the North American v2008 map update as described in the following forum thread:
(I upgraded my North American maps to v2008 in July 2007). If it is not due to this but rather is due to something else, how do I remedy this?


Our Engineers are aware of the problems with the traffic information in Canada. We are currently working on this and hope to have all issues resolved shortly. I do not recommend to purchase a subscription at this time.

With Best Regards,

Product Support Specialist
Automotive Team
Garmin International
913-397-8282 (fax) Att: XXXXXX X<<

wilmanwar Posted - 12 nov. 2007 : 15:57:19

It is very possible that this problem is fixable either way. Via a map update or a Firmware update!!!
hpatlik Posted - 12 nov. 2007 : 06:26:22
I have a 760 and their latest update (v 2.2) indicates correcting the 1 minute delay bug. It must be a software problem in the traffic module not a mapping problem.

salsaguy Posted - 12 nov. 2007 : 04:53:07
thanks for finding it. DOH! How could I miss that! :)

Garmin edited reply - " the early versions of our 2008 mapping update the traffic information setup was not correct, as every backup would show a 1 minute delay..."

So it IS a map related issue
kappadappa Posted - 11 nov. 2007 : 04:53:15
Salsa - you are absolutely correct, but the thread is closer than you thought. It's actually on pg 1 of this very thread, close to the bottom of the page, yops posts about the map update fix
ZManCartFan Posted - 11 nov. 2007 : 03:27:23
Yeah, Salsa, that's what I thought. Just reading through this thread, though, I wasn't sure if others realized that delay times are only "accurate" when the speed info is present.
salsaguy Posted - 11 nov. 2007 : 03:25:24
I could have SWORN I read here on a 7xx thread somewhere (cant find it now) where someone got a reply from Garmin saying they knew about the problem and that it was related to the early versions of the v2008 maps info not letting the traffic info be correct (somehow) and that they were sending him an updated map DVD to load on his device to fix the problem.
salsaguy Posted - 11 nov. 2007 : 03:20:30
Yes Im in the Los Angeles area and am able to get BOTH Incidents and Speeds data, as can be seen here on the MSN Direct chart:

If you dont live in one of the 31 cities that get the SPEEDS data, your traffic info is going to be VERY limited and really not that helpful to your daily commute, unfortunately.

As you can see, Cleveland only gets incidents info (road closures, lanes closed, objects in the road) so your a bit out of luck :( ...

Incidents are only few and far between. The delay times are really all about the SPEEDS info.

ZManCartFan Posted - 11 nov. 2007 : 01:21:21
Are you all in areas where your Nuvi traffic services offer delay times? I know in Cleveland we get traffic information, but at least MSN doesn't advertise as carrying speeds or (what I assumed to be) delay times. I've had my 680 since April, and almost all delays are always 1 or 2 minutes. It's very rare that it reports as being any higher, and it's clearly not a function of the latest software in my case.
Dewi Posted - 11 nov. 2007 : 00:46:09
salsaguy, to the contrary, as I said in my previous post I don't think it's a mapping issue, I think it's something that's been introduced in the latest software update, regardless of the map version. I also updated to v2008 in late July, so I have an early version of the update. I too have inquired via email to Garmin about the problem and am awaiting a response. I really don't know what the cause of it is, it's just more logical to me to be a result of the software, not map data. I could be wrong!
salsaguy Posted - 11 nov. 2007 : 00:22:39
So Dewi, if its a mapping issue then its not just related to the 7xx series but also could be on my 680 which has the 2008 maps.
I bought mine in July/August right after the maps came out so most likely I have the same issue and thats exactly what Ive been seeing. Traffic flow is ok and road color OK but delay times are always too low and each incident is only 1 min long. They add up to 2-4 if there are multiple incidents but each one only shows as 1 min when in fact they are more like 2-5 min delays each

I already sent an email to Garmin and awaiting their reply

Dewi Posted - 09 nov. 2007 : 22:37:56
It's likely a software fix, not a map data problem, as indicated in the latest 7XX updates:

Nuvi 750 and 760 software version 2.20 as of October 30, 2007

Changes made from version 2.10 to 2.20:

-Added support for Afrikaans text language
-Updated some text translations
-Fixed bug with routing around closed entry ramps
-Fixed issue causing incorrect rounding in the Currency Converter
-Fixed bug that could cause the unit to hang during some searches
-Fixed issue causing time on the Trip Information Page to be skewed
-Fixed issue with not being able to select French Sebastian TTS voice
-Fixed issue that could cause any traffic delay to be represented as a 1 minute delay
-Fixed issue that could potentially display a blank page when creating a new MP3 playlist
-Fixed occasional issue with address selection causing the review address page to not display.
-Enhanced traffic presentation
rpagels Posted - 09 nov. 2007 : 20:48:07
Please let us know if this fixes it. I just spent 1/2 on the phone with garmin and could find no-one that new anything about it. Also did they send you a whole new city navigator map dvd or just an update.
danham Posted - 09 nov. 2007 : 14:47:26
@ yops:

This is very helpful. Many thanks. I've sent an email to support and hope to get the same result.

smiley1081 Posted - 09 nov. 2007 : 09:27:31
i.e., it is a problem in the map data?
yops Posted - 09 nov. 2007 : 01:12:00
I submitted a support ticket and got this response yesterday:

Thank you for contacting Garmin International,This is an issue we are currently aware of and have a fix for, in the early versions of our 2008 mapping update the traffic information setup was not correct, as every backup would show a 1 minute delay, to fix this issue, I can send you out a new 2008 mapping update to put on your unit, it will have the same mapping information it just will not be missing the part of the traffic which caused the 1 minute delay problem. At this time I have gone ahead and sent out a mapping update disk this update should arrive to you on a DVD update disk within 12-14 business days.

Couldn't be happier! Contact them and they will fix you up.
rpagels Posted - 08 nov. 2007 : 21:07:02
I just received my new adapter and it has made no difference. Either clear channel is not broadcasting flow ata in portland or seattle or it is a software problem with the nuvi 660
yops Posted - 28 oct. 2007 : 22:24:50
rpagels, please let me know if your replacement receiver fixes the problem, I'm anxious to find out. Thanks!
trafficinfo Posted - 26 oct. 2007 : 18:59:00
In Detroit it does show Slow Traffic as an event , color the road accordingly but IT DOES NOT SAY THE ACTUAL SPEED. But yes, TTN added flow info to their services last spring. I guess only major markets enjoy it, not in Canada though.
robogps Posted - 25 oct. 2007 : 05:05:08
Good news and thanks for your response and the link you provided.
kappadappa Posted - 24 oct. 2007 : 20:27:19
I posted a reply on this TTN thread and you can click on a couple of links in my post to read about it. But in a nutshell, TTN does incorporate flow AND incidents now, not just incidents.
robogps Posted - 24 oct. 2007 : 06:44:04
Thanks kappadappa and salsa. It'll help in making a decision. I think if I get it, it'll be mostly because of my attraction to new toys and hopefully the service will improve.

kappadappa, I understand you're in NY and I asked a question in a thread that was moved, so you may not have seen it. Does TTN cover traffic flow as well as incidents in the NY metro area? gpspassion doesn't believe it does but salsa seems to recall that you said that it now does. I can't find that info for the life of me. Thanks!

rpagels Posted - 23 oct. 2007 : 18:36:47
yops i am in Portland. Garmin had me send in my traffic receiver for replacement. I don't know whether that will do any good or not. Clear channel may just do a rotten job in our area of broadcasting the correct info.
salsaguy Posted - 22 oct. 2007 : 21:03:34
95% of the time since I only get a 1-3 min delay on my daily commute I stay on the highway and deal with it as its not that bad.
Ive heard some 680 users who DID show a 15 min delay on theirs but Ive never seen anything above 4 or 5 and thats when I had a much longer trip with one via in between my final destination.

I did find a possible reason for the delay times being low/incorrect in my trips last week - basically there was no traffic flow data in a good chunk of my route home so it couldnt calculate a delay if it doesnt have the traffic flow data to begin with!
[ 10/31/07 Edit - See my screenshots posted over on the Q&A About MSN thread for details]

Reason : Ongoing construction on the highway to widen the roads most likely leading to them to turning off or removing in-road sensors to capture the data!!!. I didnt know this until I turned off the route and zoomed in on the highway I was travelling on and looked at the traffic page really close and then I saw there was no red/yellow/green colors on a segment of my route!
Check your trip on the traffic page WITHOUT a route active to be sure you are getting traffic flow !

Originally posted by robogps

Interesting. So how do you guys determine when to reroute if the info you are being given is wrong? And would the nuvi alert you with the option to re-route if the delay is only 1 minute?

kappadappa Posted - 21 oct. 2007 : 20:02:37
That's the problem, robogps. It's tough to figure out when to trust the Nuvi and when to re-route. I had hoped to be able to depend much more on the Nuvi traffic, but it is so often wrong that it can be very frustrating. It only re-routes you if the delay time causes your route to be longer than a detour, so 1 minute delays tend to not be re-routed automatically.

Also, I've run into the problem with both TTN and MSN where the traffic map shows a delay somewhere, but because of some glitch in the data it doesn't see it as a delay. For example, it will show Green for the Lincoln Tunnel, but then when you go to the details for the traffic, it says Heavy traffic or even Stationary Traffic. But the Nuvi routes me right into it because it sees it as green with no delay, even though it's stopped traffic.

I think that that issue is more of a data entry problem with whomever is entering the data for TTN of MSN. They may be missing something and not entering the delay in the correct format.

In any case, traffic data is not something that can be set and forgotten at this point. It still requires a LOT of user guesswork to avoid delays.
robogps Posted - 21 oct. 2007 : 06:48:33
Interesting. So how do you guys determine when to reroute if the info you are being given is wrong? And would the nuvi alert you with the option to re-route if the delay is only 1 minute?
salsaguy Posted - 21 oct. 2007 : 04:02:52
Ive had the same issue with my 680 here in Los Angeles mostly underestimated delay times only shows 0:01 or 0:02 times when it should be more like 0:05 or more
yops Posted - 20 oct. 2007 : 01:15:49
I've got the same issue with the traffic on my Nuvi 660. Each traffic incident displays a 0:01 delay regardless of its severity. I contacted someone at the Total Traffic Network who is researching. I wonder if it is city-related--I'm in Seattle, you rpagels?
kappadappa Posted - 12 oct. 2007 : 22:23:57
I use a 680 with the GTM 20, so the equivalent of the 660, and get delay times based on how bad the traffic is. It seems that both TTN and MSN default to a 1 minute delay, as I've seen poor delay calculation/underestimation using both services.

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