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Technology Helps Battle Covid-19 Effects

Technology Helps Battle Covid-19 Effects
smart city lights

Technology has come to help solve our problems in many ways. It has enabled us to transform our lives in many aspects such as shopping, education, entertainment, and many more – making things more convenient and simpler through intelligent innovations. The world has now become a small village due to technology.

The benefits of technology don’t only affect our personal lives; it has also changed how many businesses operate. Technology has simplified several processes and brought about many solutions such that tasks have become easier and leaving room for more creativity. Tech solutions like the rise of data analytics have helped businesses better analyze their performance and approach, making them more effective.

COVID-19 as a catalyst for tech solutions

Technology made businesses and individual lives better, but the spread of COVID-19 further catalyzed how the world adopted tech solutions. From online grocery shopping to an increase in remote working, tech has taken a more profound role in how things now run. One such industry that has extensively looked towards tech is the parking industry.

Although the world was already welcoming digital parking solutions like contactless parking etc., the outbreak of COVID-19 has brought it to the forefront. According to a report from 2018, IoT Analytics stated that about 11 percent of public spaces worldwide have become smart. The processes involved in activities like cash exchange at the park have become outmoded.

The advancement of technology in parking has helped new-age companies create platforms that can help book parking spaces online or check for space availability in a park before getting there. Method of payment has gone digital, making it secure and helping both guards and car owners avoid the transmission of COVID-19. There are no more queues at the entry points, as we now have cars zoom past RFID to their pre-booked parking space, all through a mobile app.

Smart cities and smart parking

The challenges that COVID-19 brought have helped the case for a technology-driven world that will be better prepared for such a crisis in the future. Urban life could entirely be tech-driven in the not-so-distant future. It is going to be about parking technology and the entire ecosystem. Smart cities will rise from innovations like AI, IoT, Big Data, Machine Learning, and several other tech solutions.

Common city problems like water supply, pollution, and parking will be addressed by the tech companies, policymakers, and government through the rise of smart cities.

Living standards will rise through tech-led innovations in a smart city, with infrastructures powered by ICT and IoT, sustainable energy, a secure living environment, and many more. The people living in smart cities will essentially have access to better transportation, better healthcare, cleaner air, and smart homes.

With smart cities placing the convenience of their citizens as a major priority, they will actively offer solutions to the parking challenges. The objective of the smart parking structure will be to ease the city roads from a high volume of vehicles and the parking space limitations.

Studies show that an individual spends above 15 to 20 minutes daily searching for a parking space. This results in a high level of stress for car owners. Asides from this, the environment also takes a hit if cars spend a lot of time searching for a parking space – as they consume more fuel and release more emissions into the atmosphere. Digital parking solves many of these issues, as fewer cars will have to park on the street, and commuting will be easier.

Smart parking also helps with space optimization, as it improves the visibility of parking spaces available in every building. Parking spaces will not be jam-packed, and the available spaces will be better utilized. Business owners will reap the benefits as there will be more space to accommodate clients, customers, and visitors without the parking hassles.

The authorities in smart cities can also rely on data via parking apps for predicting traffic trends and managing the city’s parking spaces even better. This way, smart cities can offer the level of convenience they advertise to address major urban issues successfully. The tech solutions in smart cities will save fuel, time, and patience. Additionally, car owners will have strong assurance in the safety of car park locations, knowing their cars are protected from theft and damage.

Improved residential parking

The convenience offered by digital parking is not just limited to offices, malls, and public spaces. City-dwellers also face significant parking problems within their residential areas. Today, residential societies have become very common. These are characterized by many tech-led services such as app-based approval of entry and exit of delivery persons, online rent payments, and more.

During the pandemic, issues with residential parking also came to the limelight. However, digital parking solutions also help on this front. As residential societies increase, so are the parking issues within these residential spaces. Technology has offered services such as approved entry and exit of delivery trucks, online parking bill payment, and several more that have helped ease these problems. 

However, the biggest issue is the limited space in these societies. When social distancing and limited mingling time are advised, a jam-packed parking space becomes a big issue. More so, when someone parks in another’s designated parking spot, it could lead to some fracas. The amount of time spent searching for a suitable space also increases stress levels. The risk level increases when car owners have to park outside their vicinity.

However, technology has also offered a solution to this. The modern smart parking companies are now finding their way to these residential societies and easing residents’ issues with parking. Smart parking apps help residents identify vacant parking spaces even before reaching their destination. Slots reservation will be available for visitors via smart parking apps, and the whole parking process becomes more seamless and straightforward for these residents.

Additionally, the entire process improves safety and limits physical interactions for everyone. Guards can monitor things via digital platforms and intervene without having to leave their offices.

Another way that technology helps is through RFID tags on every car in the resident society. With this, the entry and exit of vehicles become automated in society. Car owners do not need to mention their residential address before they are allowed in, as the RFID tag will identify them and automatically lift the boom barrier.

Parking apps, RFID tags, and automated payment are all technological solutions that are aiding parking in residential areas. The pandemic has helped accept these technologies and catalyzed the quick adoption of smarter and better parking solutions.

Technological innovations that have helped the parking industry during COVID-19

With the world battling COVID-19, there has never been a more significant time for technological innovation adoption in the parking industry. Some of the technology driving the parking industry during this pandemic includes:

Contactless parking

Contactless parking existed before COVID-19, but the pandemic has seen more people adopt this solution. As we try to avoid physical contact and touching contaminated surfaces, parking solutions that eliminate all of these is essential.

The mode of operation for contactless parking means that parking payments will move away from paper-based to digital-based. The future is about digital solutions, and contactless parking has come to stay.

The need to be cashless is also a future that is being promoted. Contactless parking erases the need for cash, which automatically reduces physical interaction. The process also promotes efficiency and reduced workload for the workers.

The future is based on working technological systems, and the solutions offered by contactless parking promote a working and straightforward method of parking.

Automation

Automation is a trend that is fast being adopted worldwide, especially during this pandemic. It has proven to be efficient in car parking, with machinery doing all the work.

When a vehicle enters the parking lot in automated parking lots, the lasers will scan it before a moving platform elevates it and transfers the vehicle to a parking space. The system functions similarly to an automated storage bracket, and it allows as much as four times the number of vehicles that a conventional parking lot will accommodate. The effective use of space is because the vehicle drivers exit the car before it is parked, eliminating the need to leave many spaces between the cars.

With automated parking systems, parking lots will become much smaller, or there will be less need for more parking lots as the available ones will be enough for the vehicles. Parking lots will take up more vertical space than horizontal space because machines park the cars rather than drivers.

OPS-COM Solution

Parking management software is one way that technology has helped in the fight against COVID-19. It promotes less physical interaction and has everything you need to ease parking and improve customer experience.

OPS-COM is a parking and security management platform with over 20 years of experience in providing parking solutions.  Innovation, development, and a seamless user experience are core principles of OPS-COM.

The basic features such as online permit management and virtual payments are only a small part of OPS-COM’s offers. They also provide advanced solutions like managing parking violations, resolving disputes, choosing between virtual or physical permits, among other features.

What gives OPS-COM the edge over its competitors is how they put the customer’s needs first. This is evident in every new installation as it is fully customizable to meet the client’s needs. If a client already has parking management technology installed on location and it is important to keep using it, the OPS-COM platform can be modified to integrate with it. If a client wants an internal reprimand process instead of a violation citation that results in a fine, the platform proffers a solution.

Switching to the OPS-COM is as seamless as it can get, as they design a working system and train parking administrators and patrol staff. They will not leave you dealing with customers by yourself as they offer top customer support with every install.

Robin Mulloy

Helping parking and security providers reach their full potential through technology

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