Centre for Road Safety

Common Speed Adviser questions

  1. Is Speed Adviser likely to distract the driver?
  2. Are learner and provisional drivers able to use Speed Adviser?
  3. Does Speed Adviser track the user or record their speed?
  4. Will Speed Adviser cause my phone to crash?
  5. How accurate is Speed Adviser?
  6. How should I report any errors with Speed Adviser?
  7. Does Speed Adviser offer GPS directional guidance?
  8. Why use Speed Adviser instead of a traditional GPS navigational device?
  9. What if Speed Adviser says the speed limit is higher than the signposted speed limit?
  10. Will Speed Adviser know of temporary speed limits, such as roadworks?
  11. How does Speed Adviser handle variable speed limits?
  12. Does Speed Adviser know the times of school zones?
  13. How do I change the voice alerts on Speed Adviser?
  14. How do I turn Speed Adviser off?
  15. How do I adjust Speed Adviser's volume?
  16. How do I get Speed Adviser to run in the background?
  17. How much data does Speed Adviser use?
  18. Does Speed Adviser use the phone’s battery?
  19. If Speed Adviser tells me there is no signal, how do I get a signal?
  20. Why is Speed Adviser waiting for a signal when I have full 3G or 4G signal strength?
  21. Why is there no sound coming from Speed Adviser?
  22. How can I offer my feedback on Speed Adviser?

1. Is Speed Adviser likely to distract the driver?

The app does not require a driver to interact with it in any way while driving a vehicle. Your phone must be secured in a commercially manufactured mounting and be mounted as intended by the manufacturer.

2. Are learner and provisional drivers able to use Speed Adviser?

No. Under NSW Road Rules, learner drivers and provisional (P1 and P2) drivers must not use any function of a smartphone when operating a vehicle, which includes the use of Speed Adviser. Drivers need to Know the rules on mobile phone use.

3. Does Speed Adviser track the user or record their speed?

No. The app does not record a driver's location, position or the speed of their vehicle.

4. Will Speed Adviser cause my phone to crash?

No. We conduct our own internal testing to ensure the app won't cause problems with your phone.

5. How accurate is Speed Adviser?

The app relies on two functions to provide reliable speed zone information; the speed zone map database, which is embedded in the app, and the phone's built-in GPS feature which is used to determine the location of the phone. The changing nature of speed zones means that sometimes the speed zone data in your phone may not be up-to-date. We release speed zone updates about every six months.

6. How should I report any errors with Speed Adviser?

If you notice an error with a speed zone while using the app, or a problem with the app, please email us the details at SpeedlinkSupport@transport.nsw.gov.au after you have reached your destination.

7. Does Speed Adviser offer GPS directional guidance?

No. Speed Adviser is not a navigational device. It is a driver's aid, with the specific function of helping drivers adhere to the speed limit. There are many commercial providers of navigational apps, some of which are free. Transport for NSW does not intend to integrate navigational capabilities into the Speed Adviser app.

8. Why use Speed Adviser instead of a traditional GPS navigational device?

The app was conceived as a way to tap into the large number of smartphones currently in use throughout Australia, to deliver road safety benefits. Some traditional GPS navigational devices include functions similar to Speed Adviser, but they are not necessarily made for road safety purposes. Also, unlike navigational devices, Speed Adviser knows the operating times of every school zone in NSW as well as temporary ‘winter’ speed zones in the NSW Snowy Mountains region.

9. What if Speed Adviser says the speed limit is higher than the signposted speed limit?

Under no circumstances does the information provided by Speed Adviser override the signposted speed limit for any speed zone. Transport for NSW tries to ensure that the app is as accurate and reliable as possible, but drivers should always adhere to the signposted speed limit.

10. Will Speed Adviser know of temporary speed limits, such as roadworks?

No. Speed Adviser will not know if roadworks are being conducted. It will not display any temporary roadworks speed limits. The app does not have a live update function. Drivers should always adhere to the signposted speed limit, including those at roadworks sites.

11. How does Speed Adviser handle variable speed limits?

When travelling through an area with variable speed limits, the app will announce the presence of the variable speed zone but it will only show the maximum speed limit for that section of road. In variable speed zones, drivers must comply with the signposted speed limits, as these will be enforced by police.

12. Does Speed Adviser know the times of school zones?

Yes. The app knows the times of each NSW school speed zone. It includes a two-year calendar of gazetted school holidays. The app provides an audible announcement when entering and leaving active school zones. The app also knows those school zones that have extended or different operating times. While the app aims to provide accurate school zone information, drivers should always adhere to the school’s signposted speed limit.

13. How do I change the voice alerts on Speed Adviser?

  1. Tap on the Alerts icon on the main screen of the app.
  2. A prompt asking what type of audio alert do you want to hear will appear. The current choices are: Male Voice, Female Voice, Beep or None. Select as desired.

 

14. How do I turn Speed Adviser off?

Tap the Quit button at the bottom right of the screen. When asked if you're sure you want to quit, tap Quit again and the app will turn itself off. This will stop the app consuming further battery power.

15. How do I adjust Speed Adviser's volume?

Tap the screen and a volume slider and brightness slider will appear. You can adjust the volume using the slider.

16. How do I get Speed Adviser to run in the background?

Simply pressing your "Home" button after turning on the app will minimise the app. It will keep running in the background.

17. How much data does Speed Adviser use?

The Speed Adviser application itself is only about 10MB in size. However the speed zone database it uses is about 120MB when downloaded, and about 230MB when uncompressed into a usable form. The app doesn't use any data apart from the initial download.

18. Does Speed Adviser use the phone’s battery?

Yes. Like any performance intensive app, Speed Adviser requires significant battery power. It is best to keep the device connected to a charger while using it and to quit the app when it's not needed (see "How do I turn Speed Adviser off?" above for guidance on quitting the app).

19. If Speed Adviser tells me there is no signal, how do I get a signal?

As Speed Adviser is an initiative developed by the NSW government, it will only work within New South Wales.

To check that a GPS signal is being received by your phone:

  • For Android phones - go to Settings and tap the heading called Connections then select Location and ensure it is set to On.
  • For iPhones - go to Settings and tap the heading called Privacy and ensure Location Services is turned on.

20. Why is Speed Adviser waiting for a signal when I have full 3G or 4G signal strength?

Your phone receives two types of signals; a 3G/4G signal from your selected carrier, which carries both voice and data, and a GPS signal. Speed Adviser only uses your phone's GPS signal. The five bars or dots that appear in your phone's status bar indicate the strength of the signal from your chosen 3G/4G carrier. The GPS signal for your phone works independently from your selected carrier's 3G/4G signal. You cannot conclude that because the 3G/4G signal from your selected carrier is strong, that the GPS signal is also strong.

If the incoming GPS data is found to be good enough for the app's purposes, the app will immediately start working normally. If the data is not good enough, the app will display the message ‘Waiting for GPS signal' and then it waits for the GPS signal to improve. This may take several minutes.

If this does not work, assuming there is no fault with the GPS hardware in your phone, any of the following may improve your GPS reception enough to enable the "initial GPS lock" and sufficient GPS data for the Speed Adviser app to begin functioning:

  • Ensure your phone is mounted where your phone will get a clear view of the sky. Under the front windscreen is good, unless you have a windscreen coating with metallic content - in which case try mounting it against a side window.
  • If possible, move away from buildings, tunnels or mountainous areas.
  • Ensure your phone's battery is fully charged. Power it from your vehicle if possible.
  • Remove your phone from any pouch or case.
  • Ensure the phone's date, time and time zone are set correctly. If possible, elect to have these set automatically.
  • Ensure Mobile Data is activated.
    • For Android devices go to Settings then tap on General management then select Data usage and check that Mobile data is turned on.
    • For iPhones go to Settings, tap on Mobile and check that Mobile Data is turned on.
  • Ensure your phone’s Wi-Fi is activated.
    • For Android devices go to Settings then tap on Connections and check Wi-Fi is turned on.
    • For iPhones go to Settings then tap on Wi-Fi and check it’s turned on.
      Restart the phone.

If none of these work, check to see if other apps on your phone which also use GPS are working OK.

21. Why is there no sound coming from Speed Adviser?

The volume of the audio alerts from Speed Adviser is affected by the configuration of the app and the audio environment in which your phone is operating. The best way to listen to the audio alerts is via your vehicle's stereo system. If your stereo supports phone connectivity or has an external (auxiliary) input, use the appropriate cabling to connect your phone to the stereo. Then turn the stereo on and select your phone as your audio source. The volume of Speed Adviser's alerts will now be governed by the volume setting on your vehicle's stereo system. To use the phone's speaker you will need to set Speed Adviser's volume to a high setting. To set the volume of the audio alerts, tap anywhere on the app's background picture to open the volume/brightness controls. Adjust the volume slider as described in "How do I adjust Speed Adviser's volume?" above. Also, make sure that your phone's speakers are not covered by a case or a screen protector.

The ring/silent switch on the side of your phone does not affect Speed Adviser's alerts. Please note that Speed Adviser only plays audio alerts in two circumstances; when the speed limit changes and when you exceed the speed limit.

If your car stereo supports the A2DP Bluetooth profile, you may be able to stream Speed Adviser's audio to your car stereo over Bluetooth. To do this, go to Settings and turn Bluetooth on. Then tap on the Bluetooth heading. After making your phone discoverable, elect to "search" or "scan" for nearby Bluetooth devices. Your car stereo should appear in the list of available devices. Select your car stereo from the list to pair with it. You may need to enter a PIN code, which will be listed in your car stereo's manual (but will probably be 0000 or 1111).

Set your car stereo's audio source to Bluetooth, and you should hear Speed Adviser's alerts through the stereo. To test this, invoke the volume/brightness popup by tapping anywhere on Speed Adviser's main screen, then try adjusting the volume slider. At the end of each slider adjustment, the app will play "Too Fast", which you should hear through your car's speakers.

Finally, please note that the Speed Adviser only plays audio alerts in two circumstances; when the speed limit changes, and when you exceed the speed limit.
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22. How can I offer my feedback on Speed Adviser?

If you wish to report an incorrect speed zone appearing on the app or to offer general comments or suggestions, or if you have questions about Speed Adviser, please email us at SpeedlinkSupport@transport.nsw.gov.au

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