As technology advances and industry players push the boundaries of innovation, the world of mobility is changing. Despite global economic challenges, there is no doubt we are seeing the exciting emergence of an interconnected mobility ecosystem with the potential to revolutionise the way we travel. The two API providers in this week’s On the Marketplace series – Smartcar and Eco–Movement – are providing the vital building blocks right at the heart of that ecosystem.
The connected car is creating new opportunities for businesses across the mobility space to add value for the end users. Its potential as a growth driver however relies largely on whether developers can integrate apps and vehicles at scale quickly and cheaply, a challenge to date due to an absence of APIs and an abundance of proprietary manufacturer infrastructure.
Headquartered in California, Smartcar has the solution. It is the first car API for mobility applications, allowing car owners to share their vehicle data with developers who can then easily build new products and services.
It is a great example of the benefits of API usage for developers and consumers – Smartcar makes it easy to integrate with cars using simple HTTP requests. Its set of APIs has a vast array of use cases. From expense tracking and fleet management to peer-to-peer car sharing with digital car keys and personalised insurance policies based on mileage and driving behaviour, Smartcar is facilitating rapid innovation in the mobility sector.
This month, for example, Smartcar announced the launch of its API for EV charging services, allowing charging networks and applications to monitor and manage their customers’ EVs via APIs. EV charging networks collect vehicle owner consent and integrate directly with the car, regardless of make or model, to deliver services such as estimated charging times, smart charging schedules based on the lowest electricity prices and enhanced trip planning revolving around EV charge points.
New Enterprise Associates (NEA), who led the $10 million Series A funding round for Smartcar in 2018, summed up the API benefits perfectly, saying: “As the prevalence of software applications for automobiles continues to increase, so does the need for a universal API. Smartcar’s solution removes the friction felt by both OEMs and app developers to allow faster integrations between web apps and digital vehicle systems.”
Removing friction through the innovative use of data to deliver an effortless and personalised journey experience is a core value proposition of our second API provider Eco-Movement.
With European CO2 regulations kicking in and EV demand growing, the number of charge points and associated Operators is growing every day. Eco-Movement is the leading data platform for charge point locations and provides the most complete and accurate dynamic data available in Europe to help EV drivers find the best charging locations. With more than 250,000 charging points currently in the database, Eco-Movement brings together data from every (semi-) public charge point in Europe in a single feed, now available via API on the re.alto marketplace.
However, Eco-Movement goes beyond simple CPO data integration. By using a complex series of algorithms and machine learning, their team is able to improve the incoming raw data by adding information such as charge station accessibility and predicted availability, and by making crucial corrections to elements such as available power and GPS coordinates. The result is an enriched data stream which is ‘navigation-ready’ for the EV driver.
Based in the Netherlands, the data from Eco-Movement is used by major car manufacturers, navigation providers and e-mobility service providers across Europe. It is also the exclusive provider of charge point data for the European Commission’s EAFO (European Alternative Fuel Observatory) initiative, which provides alternative fuels statistics and maps.
If you can see the potential in subscribing to the APIs from Smartcar or Eco-Movement (or any of the other re.alto Providers) in order to accelerate the development of your own digital products or services, view Eco-Movement and Smartcar directly on the API marketplace.
Or perhaps you’d like to find out more about how re.alto offers specialist consultancy on how you can create your own APIs? Drop us a line, we’d love to chat.