3DLabs gives us a sneak peek at future GPS navigation systems, making GPS maps even easier to follow by showing rendered 3D environments on the screens of smartphones and GPS devices. At a recent trade show in Barcelona, the company demonstrated a remarkable prototype GPS device that showed directions complete with models of buildings in Paris rendered on the fly.
The realistic-looking presentation was considerably more immersive than today's 2D GPS maps that are simply tilted on their side to resemble 3D. These 3D model flythroughs, using information by Tele Atlas and 3DLabs hardware, will find their way into as-yet-unnamed Smartphone and GPS systems "within the next few months," according to 3DLabs. Follow the Mobinaute link below to see the system in action.
What's next? Judging from the progress being made by apps like Suunto on Google Earth and by sites such as Microsoft's Maps.Live with its Bird's Eye View capabilities, the ultimate GPS systems will be loaded with multiple photos of actual environments, showing you a reasonable facsimile of reality. Soon, GPS will let you virtually walk through locations and get a good feel for what it's like to actually be there.