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TIER trials IoT module ‘Parrot’ to improve e-scooter parking in London

TIER Parrot

Berlin-based micromobility platform TIER is trialling internet of things (IoT) modules on its London e-scooters in a bid to improve their parking and positioning accuracy.

The module, dubbed “Parrot”, will analyse data locally on TIER e-scooters instead of carrying out calculations in the cloud and beaming information back to the vehicle.

This process, known as edge computing, aims to speed up the analysis of data gathered by the scooter’s sensors.

TIER is testing to see if the new hardware and software will give the two-wheelers faster response times.

It could also notify the company when e-scooters require maintenance and identify unsafe riding.

“Our number one goal was to improve the safety and overall rider experience of our e-scooters through increased positioning and parking accuracy,” said Eryk Sokolowski, head of vehicle and IoT programmes, TIER.

The Parrot modules, which have been developed in-house, will be fitted to 60 of TIER’s e-scooters around the capital. The company plans to conduct further trials in Norway and France later this year.

Connectivity on the e-scooters will be done through an IoT SIM by Twilio.

Sokolowski added: “This is an incredibly powerful tool that will allow us to figure out whether an e-scooter has a puncture and get it fixed, or use this data to tackle drink riding by analysing rider behaviour, all while giving us the flexibility to meet changing market and regulatory needs.”

Taylor Wolfe, head of IoT, Twilio said: “With our architectural foundation of a multi-IMSI IoT SIM, powered by our APIs that improve SIM management efficiency, we are excited that TIER will have the best global connectivity experience for Parrot and give them peace of mind that their connectivity will scale as their business grows”

TIER is not the only company strapping sensors to two-wheeled vehicles, with We Are Universal recently rasing funding for its electric bikes that collect mapping data for autonomous vehicles.