Many thanks to Connected Cars Conference scheduled June 25 - 26, 2013 in Amsterdam for introducing Martin Voorzanger founder of startup Toogethr to DIDX podcast channel. Toogethr offers support that facilitates the popular peer-to-peer transport (car sharing) idea in new and better ways than ever. In an audio podcast interview, Mr. Voorzanger explains how Toogethr works, how it fits into the Connected Cars industry, where connected cars may take us in the future, and what are current and realistic trends.
(Click to listen to the 9 minute connected car audio podcast interview with Mr. Voorzanger.)
Toogether wants to make mobility more social, more fun, and more lucrative for all involved. The service is launched and available in the Netherlands and Belgium. (I wonder how long before Toogethr will be available in the USA?) People use the platform via a desktop or laptop on a browser or via an app on tablets, smart phones and other small mobile devices.
The app enables users to find who is available to give rides and to receive rides. One can decide yes or no to collaborate. I believe one can also decide to make one's Toogethr profile public and accept all or more private and accept only those we know.
A dream of the future connected car? Check the "driverless car" projects and other car manufacturers. How about vehicles that can be used by anybody? Command one to your location via a mobile phone prompt to take you wherever you want to go. Such a service may also pick other people up on the way to fetching you and so on which again shows how somethiing like Toogethr fits in. Choose between open carpooling, carpooling with those you know or private car with first to last being most expensive to least expensive.
Current trends, Martin says, point to the reality of more and more cars integrated with the Internet. It's just a matter of connecting the car to the Internet in a smart way and to have access to many data sources so decisions can be made by apps.
When people think of going from one place to another, especially the younger generations, they don’t first think of a vehicle. They cherish their mobile devices more than their cars and just want the most convenient way to trek from point A to point B. They’re looking for a solution to their transport demand. The idea of Toogethr seems to mix the best of carpooling and public transportation with interesting personal and business empowerment. Think of the gas saved and the CO2 released to Earth's atmosphere reduced.
Mr. Voorzanger believes that the world does not need more cars. Cars can be of better use than each one transporting one individual at a time in long traffic jam waits. Cars can be enabled with new services provided over the Internet with numerous benefits as discussed in the audio podcast with Martin. Toogethr's founder hopes to meet other companies and potential customers at Connected Cars Conference in Amsterdam June 25 - 26, 2013. He would like to discuss the "value add" of Toogethr and how it can be integrated with other services to improve connected cars.
The platform for Toogethr is open, and it has a free API. Martin's aim is to share data with multimodal (quite complex) root planners.
Download the Toogethr app for Android and Apple at http://www.toogethr.com/ or in the Google Play Store or iOS app store.
Be sure to take advantage of your Audible account during those long traffic jams until your geographical area gets Toogethr.