Man causes virtual traffic jam on Google Maps using 99 smartphones
03 Feb 2020
Picture used for illustration.
Simon Weckert, a German artist, put up a YouTube video showing how he created “virtual traffic jams” on the streets of Berlin, using Google Maps on 99 smartphones.
Turning on the Google Maps on 99 smartphones, Weckert placed them in a wagon cart and pushed the cart around various streets in Berlin, including outside the Google office, Android Authority reported on Monday.
The act tricked Google Maps into believing there were a lot of users on those routes.
With the phones being in a cart that was pushed around by Weckert, Google Map assumed the traffic was moving slowly.
Showcasing how digital technology can have a real impact on the real world, Google Maps' servers interpreted the situation as traffic congestion and showed that to the users.
That got drivers re-routing, in order to avoid streets that supposedly had no traffic.
Google is yet to officially comment on Weckert's experiment.
"I work for Google Maps and I know quite a bit about how this works. I believe this is possible," tweeted a senior software engineer for Google Maps.
With its geo tools, Google has created a platform that allows users and businesses to interact with maps in a novel way, well, unless Weckert aims to play around it.