From time to time, I see studies reported in leading magazines that do not deserve the coverage they get. The New Scientist recently asserted that SatNavs make car journeys shorter and safer.
However, the study was based on just 16 drivers with SatNav and 16 drivers with maps, in Taiwan. The report states that on average in-town journeys were 7% shorter, and that rural journeys were 2% shorter. What is the likelihood that this is significant, even as a study aiming to predict the population of Taiwanese drivers?
The assertion about safety is even more shaky. The researchers found that SatNav drivers made fewer changes of course. The researcher said that changes in course are a sign of frustration, which can lead to dangerous driving, so SatNavs may be safer. I would hope that no market researcher would build such a house of sand, on such poor foundations.