Evaluation of a cellular phone-based system for measurements of traffic speeds and travel times: A case study from Israel Academic Article uri icon


  • The purpose of this paper is to examine the performance of a new operational system for measuring traffic speeds and travel times which is based on information from a cellular phone service provider. Cellular measurements are compared with those obtained by dual magnetic loop detectors. The comparison uses data for a busy 14 km freeway with 10 interchanges, in both directions, during January–March of 2005. The dataset contains 1 284 587 valid loop detector speed measurements and 440 331 valid measurements from the cellular system, each measurement referring to a 5 min interval. During one week in this period, 25 floating car measurements were conducted as additional comparison observations. The analyses include visual, graphical, and statistical techniques; focusing in particular on comparisons of speed patterns in the time–space domain. The main finding is that there is a good match between the two measurement methods, indicating that the cellular phone-based system can be useful for various practical applications such as advanced traveler information systems and evaluating system performance for modeling and planning. 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

publication date

  • January 1, 2007