Technology

New Platform Lets Operators Access Data Across Tech Vendors

Posted on October 31, 2014

Representatives of the limousine industry technology companies forming the CoNext Project gather for a group shot Sunday, Nov. 2, 2014 during a launch event at the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, N.J., before the start of the Chauffeur Driven Show. Jennifer Wong and Pat Charla (center) of Drive Profit coordinated and publicized the CoNext Project, which links multiple limo industry software vendors so operators can communicate reservations and affiliate information in real-time.
Representatives of the limousine industry technology companies forming the CoNext Project gather for a group shot Sunday, Nov. 2, 2014 during a launch event at the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, N.J., before the start of the Chauffeur Driven Show. Jennifer Wong and Pat Charla (center) of Drive Profit coordinated and publicized the CoNext Project, which links multiple limo industry software vendors so operators can communicate reservations and affiliate information in real-time.

[Updated with new photo  and caption 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT 11/3/14]

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. -- Ground transportation operators using Livery Coach, FASTTRAK CloudThe Hudson Group and SedanMagic, now have real-time access to vehicle location data, intra-network communications and on-demand booking delivered via a new neutral communications platform through the The coNext Project that was unveiled this week.

On Oct. 31, GroundWidgets joined the alliance of software providers working with The coNext Project. The entry of GroundWidgets brings an additional 500 operators, 10,00-plus cars and 12.5 million rides. The CoNext Project now brings together more than 1,530 operators, 41,52-plus cars and 80.5 million rides each year for the ground transportation providers represented by the CoNext system providers, said Amir Zafar, founder and CEO of GRiDD, the technology company who developed the neutral platform.

This new connectivity will eliminate the need for ground transportation operators to call in reservations to their affiliates. With a push of a button, they will now be able to send jobs electronically to any operator -- regardless of their dispatch system -- and they can get real-time ride statuses, book changes, and send rides to an affiliate regardless of the software they are using. This reduces the overhead of their dispatch and reservation operations.

This is the first time operators from different software providers can communicate directly using a vendor neutral network technology in real-time.

Apurva Patel, CEO of GroundWidgets, said,  “It has always been in the best interest of our industry to have a single, neutral communications network. Chauffeured service passengers are part of a global community, and we have to make sure that our clients are seamlessly connected to this global network. Participation in The CoNext Project means that we are adding a new level of real-time connectivity where operators partner with each other and are positioned to extend the duty of care their corporate customers expect."

In addition to the connectivity, operators will now be able to elect to go on demand when they have excess capacity.  The on-demand feature will be at the discretion of the company not the chauffeur.

The CoNext Project will launch with a celebratory “toast” at an event at the Chauffeur Driven Show on Sunday, Nov. 2 at 8 p.m. in the Diamond Ballroom at the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, N.J.  During the show, demos of the platform, including the on-demand functionality, can be seen at Sunday night’s event and information will be available at the participating software provider booths during the show.

About The CoNext Project
The CoNext Project offers ground transportation providers with access to both connectivity and on- demand functionality across multiple networks, via a collaboration of dispatch and technology system providers. Information: www.theconextproject.com or email [email protected] for more information.

About GroundWidgets
GroundWidgets is an entrepreneurial technology company driven and managed by founding developers and technologists. GroundWidgets is exclusively focused on consulting and development of applications for the ground transportation industry harnessing the collective institutional knowledge of its founders and their experience of over 25 years in the ground transportation industry.  Information: www.groundwidgets.com; [email protected]

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