Avis Budget Group partners with Otonomo to unlock the potential of its connected car data

Mobility solutions provider Avis Budget Group has entered into a partnership with Israeli start-up Otonomo, an automotive data services platform, to unlock new avenues for value creation from the data generated by its connected fleet of vehicles. These will cover an estimated four billion road miles this year and are anticipated to generate over seven billion road miles of data in 2020.

The Otonomo platform will help the company gain new and actionable insights from its connected cars, which span a diverse range of makes, models and telematics technologies. By reshaping this disparate connected car data for new users, it hopes to gain insights to streamline operations, reduce costs and improve customer satisfaction. The platform also provides new opportunities for collaboration with cities to realise new societal benefits, including smart city and traffic planning

“By partnering with Otonomo, we can better utilise the data captured by our connected vehicles,” says Arthur Orduna, chief innovation officer at Avis Budget Group. “The Otonomo platform also allows us to safely and securely engage with new public and commercial partners, and together, make an impact on what the future of mobility looks like for consumers, communities and companies alike.”

The company, through the Avis and Budget brands, have more than 11,000 rental locations in approximately 180 countries and through its Zipcar brand has more than one million members in its car sharing network.

With the help of Otonomo, Avis Budget Group can explore data for good opportunities that can make smart cities smarter, roads safer, traffic flow and parking more efficient, and driving more enjoyable. Data from the Avis Budget Group fleet could significantly improve smart city applications such as planning, road hazard identification, or advanced traffic management. In time, this could translate to reduced emissions, accident prediction and prevention, and an overall better experience for all travellers.

Ben Volkow, a serial entrepreneur behind four successful companies and CEO and founder of Otonomo says the partnership with Avis Budget Group delivers a range of opportunities and can help it deliver a vision of enabling a world of environmentally-friendly cities that run more efficiently. He says the vehicle data can be put to work to create smarter cities and for traffic management, which improve driver quality of life, minimise congestion and reduce traffic accidents.

“For example, by identifying traffic “hotspots” at certain times, streetlights can be adjusted, potholes can be fixed and resting areas can be constructed. Real-time data can be used to issue safety alerts, while historical aggregate data can be used for long-term planning of infrastructure and transportation,” he explains.

Avis has revealed that US global marketing information services company JD Power has been among the first companies to use its fleet data and is already using it to complement its own consumer research on different makes and models. Instead of having to ask drivers for feedback, it can now hear the “voice of the vehicle” directly through connected car data.

Industry research shows that by the end 2020, there could be more than 255 million connected cars on the road generating data from electronic control units (ECUs), Controller Access Networks (CANs), and even infotainment systems. The number of connected car data points are in the billions, and these datasets are growing fast, but this data is designed purely for vehicle operations and needs translating from its raw format and additional processing for wider usage.

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