Parkopedia Teams With Valtech on Connected Car Project

Parkopedia has teamed with Valtech Mobility to offer drivers “vehicle-centric digital services.”

Announced Friday (June 2) in an email to PYMNTS, the partnership combines Parkopedia’s parking, charging and payment processing expertise with the app creation, integration and back-end development experience of Valtech Mobility, a joint venture of Volkswagen and digital agency Valtech.

“The new partnership with Valtech Mobility means that vehicles with the associated software fitted will benefit from integrated in-car services that simplify and heighten the driving experience,” Parkopedia said in a news release provided to PYMNTS. 

“This is achieved by providing accurate parking, charging and cost information, along with Parkopedia’s integrated Payment Platform that makes it possible to pay for services without having to exit the vehicle or pull out a smartphone.”

The companies argue their partnership gives carmakers an easier time supplying parking and charging data together with in-vehicle payments for services like fueling and highway tolls, and will allow vehicle manufacturers to tailor the user experience to suit individual drivers.

PYMNTS looked at the connected car trend earlier this year in a conversation with Car IQ CEO Sterling Pratz.

He said that as this movement picks up speed, vehicles are turning into mobile retail stores with embedded payments, letting drivers pay for services from inside their cars or trucks on a transactional basis.

“It’s a complete one-stop, in-dash experience,” Pratz said. “That’s what we think is revolutionary. Any payment that’s gone into a car before has always been multiple steps. There’s an app for each merchant, and then a credit card associated for each merchant and app. In our case, that all goes away. Anytime a driver goes into a gas station, it automatically connects and pays, same with driving through a tollbooth.”

Elsewhere on this front, chipmaker Qualcomm last month announced plans to buy Israeli firm Autotalks in a bid to broaden Qualcomm’s automotive business.

Autotalks’ chips are designed especially for what it calls “vehicle to everything” (V2X) connectivity for manned and autonomous vehicles. The chips focus on improving vehicle safety and preventing accidents, enabling data and information flows that in turn can help alert drivers (and the vehicles themselves) to obstructions and other road hazards.

“The readiness to conduct more activities from the so-called car cockpit is there and would conceivably see more widespread adoption as drivers feel at ease with what can be done during the daily commute or a road trip,” PYMNYS wrote at the time, pointing to recent research on connected activities that show the use of parking apps up 30% year on year.