BMW to trial blockchain for car mileage tracking
German multinational automakers BMW is controlling blockchain platform to track mileage in leased vehicles. They have initiated a startup innovation program DOVU.
There were five startups that worked with BMW Group UK as a part of the company’s innovation lab which was first revealed in the month of February. DOVU was one among the five startups. It designed and developed a system with Alphabet– BMW’s fleet manager which aimed to incentivize drivers to log mileage in the vehicle which are borrowed or leased vehicles.
Alex Morris, DOVU head of the product explained, the system was targeted to aid BMW the activities its vehicles are up to and the impact caused by them. When the drivers participate, they will get tokens as an exchange for their data.
“What we’re doing is we’re essentially trying to build out this circular economy on the DOVU platform. [Drivers] can earn tokens, but down the line, they’ll also be able to spend tokens on services – for example, they might be able to get replacement tires or something like that using the DOVU ecosystem. The partner, in this case, BMW, defined the categorization of the reward and that’s defined in a smart contract. As long as the parameters are met for the smart contract, they’ll receive tokens,” Morris said to CoinDesk.
The pilot program demands drivers f the borrowed vehicles to enter their mileage on a weekly basis. The information will be stored on DOVU’s blockchain. The current automatic mileage tracking systems don’t provide any such information which the company wanted. Also, the system is not reliable.
“Right now, mileage is the most important factor for the resale value of their vehicles,” he said. “The problem is quite an important one for them to solve, so when we suggested tokens to incentivize them to do that they were very excited,” Morris stated.
DOVU’s community manager Max Lomuscio said that they have already completed proof-of-concept. Currently, they are gradually moving into a second phase. The actual trial with drivers will take another 6-8 weeks.
According to Morris “the plan is to become this kind of ubiquitous rewards system that can work across vehicles, make some kind of unified wallet for token rewards that you can use on your BMW, but maybe jump into your second car and earn more tokens and then spend those throughout the ecosystem.”
The startup DOVU is also aiming to work with smart city environments. They have already begun discussions with a few cities to gauge the earnings and spending use cases. They are also planning to incorporate the data acquired into the public transit and other features of a metropolitan area.
Image source: Shutterstock