HERE announces Mitsubishi, weather and public transport partnerships
ITS (UK) member HERE Technologies today announced that it has entered into a strategic partnership with Mitsubishi Corporation (MC) of Japan.
Through the partnership, HERE plans to play a role in various strategic initiatives in Japan and other markets in Asia Pacific. These include deploying HERE technology in several projects to address customer needs in transportation and logistics and other industries, such as (1) making truck logistics and last-mile delivery more efficient; (2) optimising delivery routes and capacity management for middle mile logistics; (3) supporting smart city initiatives with an emphasis on reduction of traffic congestion; and (4) enabling better mobile navigation systems and location-based advertisements in airports and entertainment facilities.
As part of their collaboration, MC is also planning to leverage the HERE location platform to support its own digitalisation initiatives. MC is a conglomerate with businesses in many industries, including industrial infrastructure, materials, urban development, automotive, mineral resources, and chemicals.
“We are excited to partner with Mitsubishi Corporation and bring our location technology to new markets and industries,” said Edzard Overbeek, CEO, HERE Technologies. “Our joint partnership is proof of how different data sets enabled with location intelligence can drive growth, cost efficiency and innovation for customers across multiple industries.”
HERE has been growing its presence in Asia Pacific. Its commitment to the region includes the recent extension of the HERE Workspace along with a suite of HERE Location Services into Japan.
The appeal and necessity of location data and technology across geographies and industries is also reflected in the company’s diversifying shareholder structure. On December 20, 2019, HERE announced that MC and Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation (NTT) plan to jointly acquire a 30% ownership stake in HERE. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2020, subject to regulatory approval.
Meanwhile HERE Technologies has also announced that the Global Weather Corporation (GWC) has joined the HERE Marketplace to provide its RoadWX® road weather data service, a segment-level forecast of road surface conditions (dry, near dry, wet, snow/ice and slush) to HERE Marketplace customers. GWC will also provide specialised information such as road condition confidence level, pavement surface temperature, on-road water and snow depth, potential visibility limits, and many other important weather variables.
The GWC road weather service, RoadWX® will be map-matched to the HERE road segment topology. The combination of the two companies’ capabilities and underlying technologies represents a significant breakthrough for addressing the many vehicle safety and efficiency use cases, ranging from advanced infotainment to the rigorous safety standards of highly automated driving and navigation.
For example, the integration of GWC’s road-level weather data with high-definition maps and real-time vehicle sensor data from HERE can broaden the availability of highly automated driving in regions that are most impacted by adverse road weather conditions.
Whereas atmospheric weather conditions can confuse some vehicle sensors, knowing in advance the road surface information provides an external reference beyond the readings from vehicle sensors. For example, a vehicle may “kick out” of a state of highly automated driving if its sensors, such as windshield wipers, indicate a light rain. However, knowing the road surface condition on the road segment ahead may indicate that the vehicle can still maintain traction in a state of highly automated driving.
GWC chose to make its RoadWX data service available on the HERE Marketplace because of HERE’s long-standing and trusted reputation of delivering automotive-grade navigable road maps and HERE’s deep industry connections worldwide. By joining the HERE Marketplace, GWC will offer its data and services to qualified marketplace customers who want to create location-centric solutions in industries such as automotive, insurance, and transportation & logistics.
“Today there is a clear need for a neutral party that can safely and securely offer standardized access to vehicle sensor data, and HERE is positioned to do exactly this,” said Kirk Mitchell, Senior Vice President and General Manager for HERE Technologies, Americas. “We look forward to working with GWC to take advantage of the HERE Marketplace to offer its high-value, differentiated products to automotive and other industries as the movement to sophisticated in-vehicle experiences and highly automated driving continues to evolve.”
GWC now offers its real-time and historic road-level weather data on the HERE Marketplace so that data consumers can readily utilise it in their applications. HERE Marketplace customers can access GWC data products in raw form or as HERE map tiles, where each tile provides road surface conditions and related information by road segment. GWC’s forecasts are updated every 15 minutes, providing current conditions and forecasts hourly out to 48 hours and every 15 minutes for the first several hours.
RoadWX® is based on machine learning technology that models the environmental and physical characteristics of the road surface and sub-surface for all classes of roads. Road conditions forecasted are; dry, near dry, wet, snow/ice and slush at the road segment-level. Additional variables include road condition confidence level, road surface temperature, water/snow depth on-road, air temperature, precipitation type and amount, wind speed and direction, and more.
“The combined technologies of the HERE platform and the GWC RoadWX®, offers customers a solution that scales to meet their global requirements for accurate road weather forecast data,” said Mark Flolid, CEO for Global Weather Corporation. “HERE Marketplace customers will have access to our specialised RoadWX road weather service and the future advances we have planned to meet the weather needs of the connected world.”
To learn more, hear Mark Flolid, GWC CEO and Co-founder, speak during CES at the HERE booth on Thursday, January 9, at 10 am PT. To obtain an evaluation sample of GWC data, contact HERE.
And HERE Technologies aggregates public transit data, continuously updating, expanding and verifying more than 2800 data sources, covering 1900 cities in 65 countries worldwide. Multiple data formats are converted, standardised, processed and harmonised from a wide variety of rich data sets, to provide a seamless service for the customer. From a product perspective, this offering ranges from APIs, ready-to-use cloud services for multiple use cases on the location platform, to SDKs for seamless integration into customer applications.
For urban travellers and commuters, this means they can plan and book the fastest, cheapest or most convenient way to get to their destination. It mitigates disruption and delay across a multi-modal transport network by offering a comprehensive range of services and options to help get them from A to B. In addition, daily updates of real-time timetable data from 180 cities worldwide ensure that transit network information remains constantly updated, further improving the customer experience.
HERE Public Transit
The HERE Public Transit API, which holds real-time information on departure boards and service interruptions, improves the experience of using public transit, finding the most intelligent way to get to a destination based on a range of dynamic events. For example, if a train is leaving in two minutes but the station is a five-minute walk, the API is smart enough to know you may need to take the next connection or use a different means of transportation.
The API leverages a rich portfolio of data from public transit authorities and external agencies, as well as HERE proprietary map content, to improve the entire door-to-door user experience. It provides precise pedestrian instructions that account for pedestrian-specific features – such as stairways, sidewalks, crosswalks, bridges, tunnels, elevators and escalators.
HERE Intermodal Routing
The HERE Intermodal Routing API offers an innovative and smart routing experience across cities, combining consolidated public transit with other modes of transport, such as private car, bike, taxi and a variety of shared urban mobility services in order to navigate more efficiently between a given pair of locations. It also offers parking information within proximity of transit stops, helping urban regions combat traffic congestion. It can tell a commuter how long it takes to drive to the station or suggest an efficient transfer to public transport if, for example, there’s a low-emission zone ahead. Based on daily updates of timetable data, it will also tell them when the next train leaves and how long it will take to walk to the office. Future capabilities include options for parking at EV charging stations near public transport, as well as combining public transit options with other upcoming modes of urban mobility.
One such example of intermodal routing solving real mobility issues is the Deutsche Bahn Park+Ride app (available for Android and iOS) developed by HERE, Deutsche Bahn, S-Bahn Stuttgart and newly renamed parking startup Bliq (previously AIPARK) to support commuters with their daily travel combining car ride and public transit in the city of Stuttgart. The app uses a Park & Ride API service that provides routing based on all relevant information – including real-time data on street traffic, parking availability and public transit connections – making Park and Ride offerings more attractive and reliable.
“The mission for HERE Technologies is to pave the way towards greater collaboration in order to provide a seamless urban mobility experience, by helping public and private organisations to offer enhanced multimodal services to their customers,” said Giovanni Lanfranchi, CTO and Senior Vice President of Development at HERE Technologies. “We provide an open platform for content providers to offer and publish urban mobility data that can be integrated into applications to optimise the needs of the urban traveller.”