Porsche has announced a proof of concept blockchain parking fee collection method known as “You Owe Me”.
To facilitate its users, the sports car manufacturer Porsche has decided to employ blockchain technology for recording and transacting parking fee. The manufacturer hopes to use the decentralized technology to bring automation for the micro transactions involved in paying for parking fee. With the aid of Dutch Quantoz, a blockchain specialist organization, the car manufacturer hopes to offer an automated system that would not only cut down on the time required to pay, but also bring a cashless economy to the car parking sector.
Porsche will be using RFID cards for the purpose. A car owner will be able to enter a car park and identify using the card. The owner can then park the car and go about his or her business. When the owner leaves the parking garage with the car, he or she can use the card at the exit point.
The sensor would have recorded the time of in and then the time the owner left. Using time logging and owner identification data retrieved from the card, the correct amount to be billed is generated and sent to a designated blockchain wallet of the user.
In all this, Porsche plays a role of an intermediary. At regular intervals, Porsche will collect the owed money (Hence the name “You Owe Me”) from the car owner and pay the parking garage authority.
One member of the development team described the working, “The parking garage is the sender and the customer is the recipient of a kind of promissory note, which includes the amount and the currency”. He further said, “With Blockchain, we can transfer data faster and more securely, giving our customers even more comfort in the future…”
Porsche’s You Owe Me is not just about parking fee though. It is also working on including tolls and even remotely lock and unlock the vehicle. The system could be used for even paying out for charging of electric cars.
Any parking or other service provider can connect to the You Owe Me platform. Since Porsche will be responsible for collection of money from car owners and paying service providers, it brings a level of trust. Blockchain ecosystems are not known for IOUs and the traditional method (in a decentralized environment) is usually to set up a smart contract. The use of smart contracts would have made it complex with such variables like time and premiums.
Blockchain is not a new frontier for the sports car manufacturer as it has worked with the technology before. Porsche has used blockchain in the past, such as the EUR 150 million loan deal with Spanish bank Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria using a private version of hyperledger.
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