Roadify is a community-powered platform that will improve the daily commute for many New Yorkers. Roadify utilizes the power of text messaging and Twitter (with more platforms soon) to connect travelers in an upstream/downstream fashion that saves everyone time and minimizes traffic, pollution, and overall frustration. Roadify can help people find a street parking spot, determine how close the bus is, and figure out how to save time on thier commute.
(1) Usefulness to residents, visitors and City government:
The dynamic breadth of the platform allows a wide range of users to GIVE and GET information quickly (including real-time ALERTS about traffic), while creating a sense of community and positive interaction.
Roadify incorporates cars, commercial vehicles as well as public transportation like buses and trains.
For residents of areas like Brooklyn’s Park Slope, where parkers create 64% of local traffic and average 27 minutes hunting for a spot, Roadify can save users hours per month and help get cars off the streets more quickly.
(2) Inventiveness and originality:
Roadify’s unique set up allows for it to be an easy companion for commuting. It provides value across several modes of transport, combining published and user generated information, and is accessible by any phone with text. As information such as bus schedules and actuals, traffic areas, and flight status become more accessible, we can easily incorporate them into Roadify.
User-generated data will always be the fastest and most accurate when it comes in from the field, and will be something we will continue to harvest.
We chose to focus on the less visual but more ubiquitous platform of SMS text in order to be inclusive and reach a wide demographically-diverse audience. We, therefore, had to be more inventive to enable dynamic yet-simple-to-use functionality within the limits of 160 characters.
We think the GIVE and GET exchange system, along with StreetCARma points, are examples of inventiveness and originality that even non-iPhone users can enjoy. Sometimes you have to be more clever with a smaller sandbox.
(3) Visual appeal and usability:
Roadify’s input mechanisms (SMS, Twitter, etc.) are quick and popular, providing information instantly for little or no cost.
Roadify’s usability is easy for non-technical people to use. While other applications work only for iPhones or Blackberrys, they neglect the fact that 87% of cell phone users in the U.S. don’t have “smart” phones (“The State of Mobile Marketing” comScore data, 2009). Roadify works with almost every phone.
That being said, however, with “smart” phones increasing in popularity, Roadify is developing compatible applications.
(4) Effectiveness in increasing access to information and improving government transparency:
Roadify is a host for organic information. It is reliant on user-supplied information, which means that users get to be active participants in the process.
Roadify has tapped into NYC.gov’s Data Mine to utilize Alternate Side Parking regulations and timings. The system responds to any "GET" on a suspended day by automatically alerting drivers to the suspension days provided by the Data Mine. This highlights windows of parking times caused by Alt Side Parking ending.
Roadify is currently running an advertisement campaign that incorporates a color-coordinated map of Alt Side Parking days and times in Park Slope. The idea is if everyone had a more friendly way to acceess city-generated information, they could lessen the traffic on the street caused by aimless circling.
(5) Potential for commercialization:
Roadify has many revenue options:
1) subscription, 2) advertising, 3) selling data collected to transportation businesses/organizations including navigation systems, 4) taking portion of SMS fees that run through the system.
One primary idea under subscription is to charge people who primarily GET whereas the GIVERS would be free or even paid – using the larger base to subsidize the activists who keep a social media business vital. Initial estimates anticipate that Roadify can generate annualized revenue of $20M by Year 5 in the U.S. alone. Profitability could be achieved within 2-3 years depending on the growth plan.
For a complete Business Plan, please email email@example.com.