Starting Monday July 16, in New York City, L.A. and San Francisco, you can get driving directions delivered to your cell phone via a text message.
Here's how it works: You first call 347/328-4667 ("Directions" spelled on a keypad).
Next, say where you are, whether it's a street address or an intersection.
Then you just name your destination, which can be a street address, intersection, or business name, such as Starbucks.
You'll immediately receive a text-message with point-to-point directions. The free service is from new outfit called Dial Directions and the info comes from MapQuest. Luckily, you don't need a fancy smart phone to use the service. Any dumb phone will do.
Plus, outside of your cell phone provider's charges, there's no cost for getting information via text message.
I tested the service and found that the point-to-point directions were easy-to-follow.
One downside is that when you call 347/328-4667, you have to talk to a computer instead of a real person. If you hate that type of experience, you won't like this service. But I found that the computer understood words with a high degree of accuracy.
Related: More tips on maximizing your phone.