Unlocking the benefits of vehicle data: Solving data limitations in the transport industry.
Focussing on harnessing the power of realtime data in a decentralized, scalable way, the award winning open source project Streamr has spent the last six months developing partnerships and building relationships with various stakeholders in the automotive and transport sector. These range from car and component manufacturers, hardware and software companies, local and central governments, highways authorities, maintenance companies, technology startups, and civil engineering consultancies from all over the world. These organisations have already started to help us solve some key data challenges including:
- Data limitations surrounding road surface quality
- Unreliable and inadequate data sets for use in traffic models
- Inadequate information on driver behaviour used for assessing insurance premiums
The Streamr Partnerships team has identified three use cases, which have been subsequently validated with experts in the transport and smart cities sectors. They involve gathering various types of realtime data from vehicles. This data is then streamed via the Network, our realtime data transportation layer and made available for sale to data consumers on the Streamr Marketplace.
The Network will be decentralized in stages over the coming years, creating a vastly more scalable, low latency, P2P infrastructure for the IoT-Smart City data economy. Because it will benefit from the utilisation of sunk cost computing hardware, it will operate at a much lower price to the user than solutions currently provided by incumbents.
Streamr’s soon to be released Community Product feature for the Marketplace will also further the development of data products in a revolutionary way. For the first time, data buyers will be able to bulk subscribe to streams of data originating from many multiple and independently owned data producing gadgets such as home sensors, wearable IoT devices and vehicles and directly remunerate those owners. For the data buyer this will facilitate purchasing multiple and disparately owned data products in a “one click” fashion. For the individual and independent data producers of a gadget, the Community Product will bring them the opportunity to bundle their data with others to create more value for their individual stream and be directly paid for their own data. This pattern of individual and independent data streams bundled by gadget type, geographic location or other descriptors, into one product and then made available for sale, will form the bedrock of the new Smart City data economy.
Streamr is also working on the development of the Trackr location data sharing app which will also enable data monetisation and opt-ins at the level of the individual.
Each of our vehicle use cases is explained below.
Road Surface Quality
Potholes and poor road surface quality on highway networks causes damage to vehicles and can lead to severe accidents. According to a 2016 AAA study, the damage to vehicles caused by potholes cost US insurers $3bn per year. The UK government will spend over £200m in 2018 trying to combat the problem.
So how will Streamr make a difference? Through Streamr it is possible to stream realtime road surface data from road users’ vehicles. By making this data available, it may be possible to better understand the causes of potholes, predict when they will appear, and create more innovations around the material used for constructing the pavement.
The Streamr Network can connect directly with sensors in vehicles or via the OEM database to gather anonymized data concerning: road surface imagery, acceleration, suspension and location. Using this data, a “road surface quality” Community Product will then be created in the Streamr Marketplace, which interested parties could subscribe to and run analytics on via the Streamr Editor tool. They can also download the data themselves. One example of an interested subscriber might be an AI company. An AI company can label the data and curate it into a refined product suitable for contractors to use in their maintenance regimes.
Whenever a party subscribes to the product, the road users & OEMs would be rewarded in cryptographic tokens called $DATA. Like other cryptographic tokens, $DATA can be exchanged for fiat currency or other crypto tokens like Bitcoin.
By allowing data purchasers to combine road surface data products from multiple data producers, Streamr takes this data offering to a new level. For example, on any particular day, every single road user on the M25 motorway that encircles London could be streaming their realtime data to the Streamr Marketplace where it could be sorted into an “M25 Road Surface Quality” community product. Every road user and the various OEMs participating in the product would be rewarded with a share of the data tokens whenever a third party subscribes/ purchases to the product. Having these more sophisticated data products available could lead to greater innovations in road standards and developments in the materials used for constructing the road surface.
Improved driver behaviour leading to lower insurance premiums
Vehicle insurance companies base their quotes on limited data. This sometimes leads to misaligned premium pricing. Streamr is working on solutions to overcome this challenge by enabling road users to stream realtime data of their driving behaviours.
Streamr is currently designing a pilot that would involve gathering various in-vehicle datasets, which could be used to determine how well a road user is driving their vehicle and the level of risk created during a trip. The pilot would aim to gather data on:
- Lane discipline
- Speed limit discipline
- Abrupt braking
- Vehicle occupancy
By making this data available to insurance companies, participants could be rewarded with lower premiums for better driving behaviour.
Streamr has partnered with decentralized location data market Fysical to use realtime aggregated location to more accurately inform and shape traffic models. The collaboration will leverage data from mobile apps on 10 million phones to enable the development of new and improved infrastructure in an industry that has largely relied on limited information. Through its collaboration with Fysical, Streamr demonstrates a significant use case of how data can be collected, modeled, and used to improve the delivery of transport planning services within the infrastructure industry.
Streamr has procured Bold Native Advisors Ltd (Native), a global multidisciplinary consulting firm, to build a traffic model of the nation of Georgia using aggregated location data obtained from apps on iOS and Android phones. The pilot aims to build a new demand matrix for a traffic model, with Georgia selected due to the fact that in 2017, Native built a model in Georgia on behalf of the World Bank, using traditional datasets and roadside interviews.
Through its data Marketplace, Streamr is rectifying the existing roadblocks to efficiently develop traffic models. Among other features, the Marketplace enables national transport authorities to use vast amounts of traffic-related data that was previously difficult to access. Together Streamr, Fysical and Bold Native are pioneering a real-world use case that highlights the benefits of recent historic information in the development of infrastructure.
Want to sell data on the Streamr Marketplace? These three tutorials will help show you how: