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APIs are key for integrated, efficient and user-friendly transportation services.  

 

Bestmile recognized early on that mobility requires an ecosystem of technologies and stakeholders to deliver next generation services—human driven and autonomous. Connections must be made between travelers, drivers, vehicles and other transportation modes but also with mobility providers’ existing operation software, traffic data, navigation systems, payment technologies and more. 

The Bestmile Fleet Orchestration Platform features a set of open APIs that enable mobility providers to integrate services with the broader transportation ecosystem and allow them to build their own applications and interfaces. These include: 

 

  • • A Booking API that allows providers to connect their own booking apps or other booking  sources to the Bestmile platform. Travelers can use these apps to get service quotes and estimates, create bookings, view ETAs and vehicle locations, receive real-time updates, and change their plans. 

 

  • • A Transportation API that enables the Bestmile platform to connect with traveler information systems that are ordinarily displayed at public transport stations and stops. This allows travelers using a mobility service to see the status of scheduled or on-demand services they might be trying to connect with, all within a MaaS or booking app. 

 

  • • A Fleet API that connects the platform with fleet management systems. Fleet supply, vehicle availability, and driver plans can be defined and viewed directly on the Bestmile Dashboard, or on an external system through the Fleet API. 

 

In this article we will dive into how Bestmile’s Booking and Transportation APIs have been leveraged by technology partners to develop interactive and user-friendly traveler interfaces for the Uvrier on-demand autonomous shuttles service.  

 

 

Uvrier – AVENUE deployment 

 

EU’s 2018 Autonomous Vehicles to Evolve to a New Urban Experience (AVENUE) is an ambitious four-year, €22M project to design and deliver full-scale demonstrations of on-demand autonomous mobility services. Its goal is to “pave the way for the full-scale introduction of disruptive door-to-door services and ‘mobility cloud’ strategies in urban transportation.” 

 

The Uvrier deployment, under the direction of PostBus and the Mobility Lab, testthe combination of autonomous vehicles and on-demand. The deployment not only promise technological findings, but also provides insights on whether the mobility behavior of the local population changes with the provision of an on-demand service.   

In order to improve travelers’ interaction and overall experience, two different bus stop interfaces were developed for the Uvrier mobility service leveraging Bestmile’s APIs 

 

The two interfaces are shown to users in alternance in order to determine which interface travelers are more receptive to and how they impact ridership. 

 

 

Animatico – Interactive Avatar

 

Animatico is a Swiss Startup based in Zürich. They build interactive avatars to assist and guide users through various customer service tasks. 

  

In order to bring a human touch to the autonomous mobility service of Uvrier, Animatico created an animated avatar named Vincent with which travelers can interact, book a ride with the shuttle or ask general questions (e.g. next train connections, things to do in the region etc.). Vincent possesses an entertainment layer which allows him to chit-chat and joke with the travelers. 

  

Using Bestmile Booking API and Transportation APIs, Vincent is able to gather the users booking information (e.g. destination, amount of passengers), request & book the ride for the passenger and share the shuttle’s estimated time of arrival. 

In addition to bringing entertainment to the service, voice interaction simplifies the booking process for travelers and remove the need for public touchscreen. 

 

 

 

 

HES-SO Valais-Wallis – Traveler Dashboard 

  

  

The HES-SO Valais-Wallis is a leading hub of skills and innovation, contributing both to economic and social development and to the creation of jobs within the canton of Valais in Switzerland.  

  

As a founding member of the Mobility Lab, HES-SO Valais-Wallis is taking part in the Uvrier mobility service and developed a traveler dashboard to complement the existing traveler mobile application. 

  

Inspired by Bestmile’s operator Dashboard, the Research Institute of Information Systems of the HES-SO Valais-Wallis worked closely with a UI/UX team to design the user-friendly interface. Using Bestmile Booking and Transportation APIs, the traveler dashboard displays a map of the service with real-time shuttles’ positions and enables traveler to book their ride in a few taps. 

 

 

Bestmile APIs, a gateway to Fleet Orchestration 

 

Thanks to Bestmile complete developer’s toolbox, sandbox environment and hands-on team, both partners were able to easily build and deploy their interfaces. 

Bestmile APIs offer a simple, flexible and efficient way to interface with Bestmile Fleet Orchestration platform and integrate with other ecosystem software and applications in order to deliver the next generation of mobility services.  

 

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