Whizkeys Tollroads for Android and iOS
As of May 2012, we have support for Indiana Toll Road (I-80/90), Ohio Turnpilke (I80), Pennsylvania Turnpike (I-76/276), New Jersey Turnpike (I-95), Garden State Parkway, and Denver's E-470 Toll Road. We are working on Florida's turnpike and New Jersey Garden State Parkway (GSP) which should be available by the end of October 2011. We will roll in other highways as soon as we get the database built for them. We will primarily look at highways that have multiple toll plazas and service plazas and not just a toll bridge or a single point of toll.
We could have created one single app with information on all the tollroads we support, but that would have been difficult to market, and would have cost much more than the 99c price tag we have put on the individual apps.
ROI stands for Return on Investment. We consider your use of the toll roads, paying toll, even paying for this app, an investment you are making. We hope that you will find the app useful just by itself, but we want you to ask for more. At launch, we have included two ROI calculations for you. You can check and see if subscribing to the electronic toll card system will save you money, based on how frequently (or how little) you use the highway. Also, you can check and see if you can avoid the highway all together, and what it that will in fact save you money.
No - well not yet. Once we have support for all the freeways we want to support, we will start taking one of the apps and create a "lite" version of it and make it free and ad supported, but that may not be until early 2012.
Yes we do. Of course, the apps were not designed for the larger screen, but they have been "optimized" to run on the iPad, Xoom and other higher resolution screens. The Map screen (which we think is the most important one particularly in a tablet) should work perfectly in full screen on a tablet). The other tabs may look a little sparse right now, but we are working on adding more features in future updates which will make better use of the screen real estate. The latest updates in the iOS versions show much better on iPad with improved resolution and text sizes. However, the apps will run full screen without the need to go to a backward compatibility (or 2x) mode. On Honeycomb, you may need to use the "stretch to screen" option for best resolution.
Internet access is used only to retrieve map tiles (we don't do it, we simply use the Google mapkit which downloads and caches map tiles). The only place in the app where it makes an Internet connection is in the Toll avoidance ROI where it connects to maps.google.com to retrieve a route. The app will let you know when it does it, and it will let you know if the connection failed. The rest of the app does not make any Internet connection and can be used completely offline.
Yes and no. The app does not need Internet for toll searches, distance calculation, bearing calculations, and even the EZPass/iZoom ROI calculation. The highway information is also stored locally on your device so even that can be used offline. Live Internet connection is only required for calculating routes (toll avoidance ROI) and displaying the maps, although if you display the maps ahead of time, Google maps will cache the tiles and you should be able to navigate mostly with no Internet connection. So an iPod touch or an iPad Wifi for example, will be able to use this app without a live Internet connection. Please note that you may not get a good location feed on an iPod touch or iPad wifi while on the freeway because these devices require proximity to a wifi hotspot to determine the location.
No we don't. This was an implementation decision. Every toll road site is different, and they present the toll rates in different ways and that can potentially change which will break the app and will require us to keep patching our app every time the website changed. Besides, using their site may put us in some kind of violation. Instead, we use the toll rates from publicly available documents and have them stored in a local knowledge base inside the app and pull up the data from the app locally, making it extremely fast, and easy to quickly change options to look up rates. The downside is that if the toll rates change (and they don't change that often) we will have to update the app, which we will do on a regular basis anyway, so you can be assured to always have the latest toll rates in your app as long as you keep your apps updated.
Depending on the extent of the toll increase, we may either publish an update, or an entirely new app. Most toll fee increases involve just a percentage change from the existing toll rates. When this happens, that very day we will push an update to the appropriate markets, so you will have access to the latest rates the date the new rates take effect. You will need to make sure you download the update in order to get the latest tolls, since the toll rates are stored in your device.
However, if the toll fee changes across the board require us to completely re-build the database, we will need to re-do the app and create a new app, since the amount of work needed to re-build the toll database is fairly significant. We realize that you have paid for the previous version already, and I hope you will purchase the new version as well (they will always be 99c) and continue supporting our development.
Your location is used for the following features:
- Of course, to show you on the map while you are traveling
- To determine the distance and bearing of you from any plaza that you tap
- To determine how far you are from the next exit and service plaza
For most purposes, you do not need to turn on GPS for the app to work. Even with only cellular triangulation, you should be able to use most of the features, although the distance calculation will be quite inaccurate. Moreover, if you are using a wifi-only device (such as the iPod touch or iPad wifi), the device may not get a good location lock at all. All other features will work however. The app will not require you to turn on your GPS although if you have it on, it will use the GPS signal.
This app is completely ad free, and it does not collect or send your location information anywhere. Your location information stays in your device and is only used for calculating distances and bearings as explained above.
If you are indoors, or if you are not moving, the device will not be able to tell which direction you are moving. In order to give you the distance from the proper exit or toll plaza, we need to determine which direction you are moving. If we cannot get a bearing, we fall back to the direction of travel that you have specified in the Toll calculation tab. To get the distance from the correct plaza while indoors or while not moving, please set the travel direction in the toll calculation tab appropriately, and you should get the correct distance.
See the above question. The app tries to determine which way you are moving and gives you the distance of the closest plaza in that direction. If you are not moving, or somehow the app is not getting the right direction, set the direction of travel appropriately in the toll calculation tab.
This is a feature - and it is only enabled in map mode. If you are on any other tab (about, calculator, ROI), the screen will turn off as usual as you have set up your device. In the map tab, we keep the screen on, because you may be using it while driving (hopefully not interacting with it while driving - please for heaven's sake don't do that). By keeping the screen on, we help you keep your eye on the road and hands on the wheels while you use the app. However, if you don't like it, just turn it off in the preferences - if you go all the way down in the settings screen, you will find a setting to turn off the screen on feature.
First of all, please accept our apologies. We have taken a lot of pains to test every feature of the app thoroughly using as many devices as we could get our hands on. However, it is likely that we may have missed something. I know you have paid for this app and you feel that you should have the best service and we would like a chance to give you that. If the app crashes, please send us an email and give us as much detail as you can about what you were doing when it crashed, and what kind of device you are using. If you can reproduce the bug consistently, send us a screenshot or if you know how to access your logs, send us the crash report. If we can fix it, we will do so and if we have a workaround for you we will give it to you right away and fix the bug in the next update. If we cannot fix the bug, then please leave us some constructive feedback instead of just being nasty on the feedback profile. We are trying to get a little return of the time we invested in building this app, so we would greatly appreciate you giving us a little slack.
There are no plans at the time being to add other Mobile platforms. Our first goal is to have most of the major toll roads supported by our Android and iOS versions. After that, maybe.
Unfortunately the toll avoiding option is ignored by external maps applications now. On Android, you can go to menu and check "avoid toll" in the settings for the route once you switch to Google maps. On iOS5, you will see multiple routes prepared by the Maps application. Prior to iOS 5, there was no way to get alternate routes from the maps app, but if you move out of the toll road, the system should reroute you if you are actively driving.
There are subtle differences in the user interface (for example, the tab bar appears on top in Android, but at the bottom in iOS) but otherwise the apps are very, very similar. The only two things that are absent in the iPhone/iOS version are the display of the compass in the map screen, and jumping to Google navigation to navigate a route when it is displayed. Otherwise both apps are pretty much the same. The latest iOS update will allow you to gift the app to someone else, a feature that is currently not available in the Android version.