TomTom Maps Platform

The source was probably this post on the ycombinator related discussion, by a new account created there. Similar sentiment to this tweet.

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Call me Mr Cynical, but I suspect that’s written by someone who isn’t neutral on TomTom’s stock price :slight_smile:

OSM welcomes contributions from everyone, even “1,000 mapping employees in Pune”, provided that they play by the rules. If someone wants to dump lots of sensor information into OSM for some purpose they’re absolutely allowed to suggest it, and everyone else in OSM is absolutely allowed to discuss whether or not it is a good idea.

Sometimes large corporations think that they know better than we do about how to map things, and that somehow rules are for “little people”. I suspect that this won’t be the case here - as I said above, TomTom have been active in OSM for some time and are moving away from their proprietary platform for a reason. They haven’t always got everything right - see the comments re the Netherlands above, and there were issues in the UK this year relating to what some tags mean (that echoed somewhat this blast from the past).

Hi Andy and others,

Interesting to read that. Here you find videos of the event where the announcement was made.
https://www.tomtom.com/events/conference/capital-markets-day-2022/

As a disclaimer… I am an investor in TomTom. I want to avoid giving qualifications on the mapping expertise of OSM or TomTom and which may or may not be better. I do hope this cooperation will be mutually beneficial.

I am no technical expert, but what I can give is some personal flavor. I’m following this company for a while now. I think it’s a nice company with friendly people, collaborative, diverse and inclusive and they come across as smart and intrinsically motivated to make the best maps. Of course they are a commercial company, but they do love what they do.

I therefore expect that they are keen to collaborate in a way that satisfies and acknowledges the OSM community, preserves the quality of OSM, increases innovation and is beneficial for all partners and the end users.

The map itself is to go live mid 2023 (also told in one of the presentations linked above) so I assume that in the next half a year or so nothing concrete will happen or change. (this is just my assumption) and OSM community will have time to get answers to questions.

So these 1,000 Pune mappers don’t happen to be Grab mappers? :stuck_out_tongue:

Nice quote in the videos:

“The Open Source community has gone from strength to strength. The OpenStreetMap community is producing and maintaining an extremely visually attractive map with a wealth of detail”
Harold Goddijn, Chief Executive Officer, TomTom

Also if you look at his slides all the “current map” slides include no copyright statement whole all the “new maps” slides include an © OpenStreetMap text. Looks like OSM is a major source of data being folded in to their maps, following the path of others (e.g. Bing maps).

As TomTom plan to use other data sources as well as OSM, it will be interesting to see how they handle that given our ODBL licence. Will they start sharing a version of their new map under ODBL too?

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This is a very interesting question …

Last year, we partnered with TomTom as a Local Chapter from Poland. Nothing came of it. Despite the best intentions on our part and the announcements their staff made. They are currently not responding to queries and emails. We wanted to work with them on developing better analytical (QA) tools and data integration. It would seem that such collaboration with the community from their point of view should be beneficial. Unfortunately, as I said, nothing came of it.

As TomTom plan to use other data sources as well as OSM, it will be interesting to see how they handle that given our ODBL licence. Will they start sharing a version of their new map under ODBL too?

there are many ways to use OpenStreetMap data without giving back, the details have been codified in the osmf guidelines.
For example you can use only specific feature types (it is not defined what a feature is) from OpenStreetMap and not add or modify these, or you can have regional cuts, use OpenStreetMap data in one place and other data in another (no minimum size for such regions by the way). Use OpenStreetMap routing and display it on another map without share alike kicking in. Use external traffic data together with OpenStreetMap data without a need to share your data.
You can even use OpenStreetMap geocoding and reverse geocoding results without almost any strings attached (as long as you do not recreate the OpenStreetMap db or parts of it). As you can have several layers of data in the same image and have different licenses for these layers, one can really imagine a lot of possible usecases under the ODbL that do not require sharing your own data.

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Yes I know, but you’re right to provide a summary for those less familiar, so thank you for that :grinning:.

Question is what option will TomTom go for? They are not going down the Regional cuts route as their presentation talked about this being a new global map (and they contrasted this to others who have used OSM in select countries only).

The only bit in their presentation that I could find was a statement saying that the base map will be “shared” and then clients can have private layers. Whether “shared” means made available to all as open data or just common across paying clients was unclear.

I guess we may just have to wait and see unless anyone from TomTom can shed more light on this.

The other bit that we can speculate on is how this may impact other efforts. In the presentations they said they are working closely with some of the tech giants and we know that Facebook has the Daylight distribution of OSM and Microsoft have been rolling out OSM in Bing Maps in select countries. Will be interesting to see if either of these are involved.

TomTom became a Corporate Member of OpenStreetMap Belgium, which means we try to work together actively, and they give some financial support. It probably helps that one of their main offices is in Ghent, but we have been having a very nice collaboration so far. We’re planning a meetup at their offices soon, and they have been looking into ways to support our projects. One of their engineers is helping to make our young traffic sign project more robust.
From our contacts, I would say that they are really trying “to do the right thing” when it comes to starting to work with OSM.

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I’m not sure what is behind all this marketing talk. What will TomTom’s
collaboration with the OSM community look like? …
Has any communication with OSM(F) taken place?

No, FTR, there hasn’t been any communication with OSMF and TomTom about this. I found out about this on the news. But given possible commerical sensitivies, that isn’t surprising. IME corporations active in OSM don’t often engage with OSMF much, so this isn’t out of the ordinary.

As others have said, TomTom have financially supported OSM(&F) in many ways for years, which is always welcome.

Maybe @courtiney as TomTom employee could tell us a bit more about the details of the planned collaboration and what data TomTom wants to contribute to the OSM database and how.

I would be happy to! I was thinking that we could host a Q&A? Or maybe just use this thread? What’s the best way?

The mapping team in Pune that is referred to in this clip are TomTom employees who edit the TomTom base map and have done so for many years. They are subject matter experts in GIS and they use TomTom’s own editor to do it. There are not 1000 of them, though perhaps in the early years there were that many.

Some of them are now learning OSM and will use their GIS expertise, in the future, to quality check OSM data and quality check TT editing in OSM. But they aren’t doing that right now. TomTom still has its own base map and will continue to have its own base map.

We do, now, have some Global Logic editors who edit in OSM, but it’s more like 50 editors and the team that manages them have spent the whole year working really hard to learn OSM rules and logic and do a good job. They’ve made some mistakes, but they are learning from them. There has never been a time when they didn’t care about being good citizens to the community. I think others on this thread can corroborate this.

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Thank you! I think answering to some of the questions and concerns from this thread is better than a Q&A, as it will reach more members of the community.

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I pulled some questions from the thread into this reply, to make it easier:

*I’m not sure what is behind all this marketing talk. What will TomTom’s collaboration with the OSM community look like?

Here’s the top level answer:

The TomTom Maps Platform is TomTom’s new location technology suite, which extends TomTom’s proprietary location data with an array of ‘super’ sources including the open source-based OpenStreetMap (OSM), probe data, and other Sensor Derived Observations (SDO) from millions of vehicles and devices. It also allows partners and customers to contribute data to the platform themselves by direct editing. All data is in turn validated, integrated, and published in a highly automated manner, resulting in TomTom Maps which reflect changes in reality in the map database and in the application as quickly as needed.

I would also add this:

TomTom will follow guidelines re: attribution and share-back. Note that the company is not yet using OSM, so some of the details of how that will look are still being worked on. The plan is to go live with the new map in early to mid 2023. The TomTom community team (some of you know @MarjanVan @HajarElOuafi David Salmon, Syed Nasrulla, and Salim Baidoun in addition to myself) are happy to be points of contact.

Has any communication with OSM(F) taken place?

Yep. Mikel M. reached out to me, and we talked a bit, and he is going to set up a bigger meeting with OSM(F), myself, and others from TomTom who can answer questions.

Also if you look at his slides all the “current map” slides include no copyright statement whole all the “new maps” slides include an © OpenStreetMap text. Looks like OSM is a major source of data being folded in to their maps, following the path of others (e.g. Bing maps).

This is legitimately confusing, and I’m sorry about that. Those are designer mock-ups in the presentation. The new map is not yet out. There was even even an OSM attribution in the mock-up, but it got cropped out in the livestream! :cry:

Now that our new strategy is public, we will be blogging regularly about the new TomTom map, our collaborations with OSM chapters (including with #communities:br #communities:no #communities:it Tanzania #communities:be and others, too), our sponsorships of OSM groups and chapters, our corporate partners, and etc.

Oh! And, don’t forget about the two tools that we shared last year: RoadRunner and MapMetrics. These were worked on by Steve Coast during his time at TomTom–you might remember this blog post. Steve’s SotM demo of MapMetrics is here and he did another one here.

I am actively making the case for TT to invest in improving RoadRunner and MapMetrics. If anyone is interested in giving me feedback or helping define new use cases, please let us know - easiest way is to email OSM@tomtom.com

I linked to this blog post above, but putting it here for convenience, as well.

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Ich weiß nicht, ob das hier das richtige Thema \ die richtige Plattform für die folgende Nachricht ist, die ich vorhin bei meinem täglichen Überblick auf Golem . de gefunden habe.

PLATINMITGLIED | Tomtom unterstützt Open Street Map

“Der Navigationanbieter Tomtom ist der Open Street Map Foundation als Platin-Mitgilied beigetreten und fördert künftig die Entwicklung auch mit Geld.”

Wenn nötig, bitte an die richtige Stelle verschieben.

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I just discovered that TomTom AmiGO is now using OpenStreetMap data, with attribution. At least in Germany and Luxembourg. Looks like they’re using it for everything (roads, POIs, buildings…) and adding their own traffic data. OSM map + TomTom traffic for free without ads sounds like a pretty good deal to me.

Screenshot_20240125_085312_AmiGO

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They posted an update on the Orbis platform which is in early access now

OSM will be a new data source, among many, used by TomTom. We will identify the best content in the OSM map by assessing its data accuracy, completeness, and consistency level, to name a few. Our intention is to create the most complete and robust map. TomTom will use the most accurate data source for each region, country or even feature which could be OSM data in select countries, while in other countries it could be TomTom data including third-party sources.

Now that I’ve used AmiGO for a while, it seems that at least sometimes the server-based route calculation uses TomTom’s own map data but the app then displays the route on top of an OSM-based map. Yesterday the app tried to route me through a track that is mapped correctly as access=no in OSM, but TomTom’s map incorrectly shows it as a public road.