by Elton Gomes
In order to combat incessant traffic woes in Indian cities, three individuals designed an app that digitized the entire parking industry. Rasik Pansare and Chirag Jain came together and designed Get My Parking, an IoT-based platform.
Get My Parking was launched in July 2015, and has since then digitized more than 300 parking lots by installing 800 devices. The firm conducts approximately 65,000 transactions daily. The acceptance of the initiative says a lot about the increasing parking issues in the country.
“Within six months of launching our solution, we had digitised over 50 parking lots. We used to spend 14 hours a day in parking lots, sat with the parking ‘mafias’ to understand how the industry functions, and even played board games with parking attendants,” Pansare told the Economic Times.
Although the initiative struck gold, Pansare says that it was difficult to convince parking contractors about its benefits: “It was like explaining banking to someone who has never banked. However, our agile, modular, mobile-based parking management system was soon lapped up by the unorganised industry,” as reported by the Economic Times.
How the app works
Motorists and drivers subscribing to Get My Parking app can find parking spots either by reading an installed radio-frequency identification (RFID) chip, near-field communication (NFC), or a quick response (QR) code sent to the user. This helps drivers and motorists find the nearest available parking spot. Additionally, it lead to a ticketless, cashless, and transparent billing system.
Get My Parking aids parking attendants in that it helps in digitally managing the lot, and is a cashless platform for payment, accounting, and auditing. The app is free for all individuals. However, parking contractors have to pay a license fee for using the app. Any hardware installation could also incur additional charges from contractors. The company intends to launch a new feature where commuters will be able to book a parking spot through the app.
For its B2B app, the company has partnered with firms such as L&T, Wipro, TCS, Cisco, IBM, and Intel, while its B2C app is available across Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Indore, Chennai, Patna, and Ranchi.
What is the problem?
India needs comprehensive reforms when it comes to parking. Civic reforms, such as those by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, have been highly dismal in Mumbai. A steady rise in the number of vehicles and an increase in population has created a parking crisis in Delhi as well. Parking in the capital has become so uncertain that parked vehicles leave little space for pedestrians to walk and might potentially block the way for emergency vehicles.
ParkingRhino helps people book parking spots through an app. Co-founded by Tridib Konwar and Mriganka Deka, the app is currently operational in Bangalore, Delhi NCR, Mumbai, and Pune, and can be accessed via Google Play Store. Drivers using the ParkingRhino app simply have to log in and search for verified parking spots around their location.
Towards the end of 2017, the Chandigarh administration had launched a parking app to help people park their vehicles. However, just one month later, the app received substantial flak for glitches and mismanagement by parking lot staff.
How successful will Get My Parking be?
By taking a digital approach, the Get My Parking app does away with physical parking challans or tickets. This will be immensely helpful as paper is saved. Moreover, the transaction conducted via digital modes remains credible. Due to the app, commuters will now be aware of the nearest parking spots, and this will enable them to save time on their commute. Saving time on the commute will in turn save fuel as well, making it a win-win for almost everyone. In addition, there’s very little room for parking attendants to trick customers because of the digital recording system. With its booking feature, the app might just be the answer to India’s parking woes.
Elton Gomes is a staff writer at Qrius.