At the recent Google for Nigeria event which held in Lagos, Google announced plans to partner with Road Preppers, the Nigerian company that built Lara.ng. The sole purpose of the partnership is to include routes for public transit within Lagos into Google maps in order to improve the transportation experience of Lagos inhabitants during transit.
The Lagos-headquartered company uses Artificial Intelligence alongside skills in fields such as design thinking, transportation, maps, data analytics to solve problems people encounter getting from one point to another.
The flagship product of the company Lara.ng is an Artificial Intelligence-based software that Lagosians have embraced. The software’s chatbot named Lara provides users with directions for public transit at any hour of the day. Lara also takes it a step further by supplying estimated fares for kekes, buses, taxis or the LagBus.
The company says this partnership with Google will help them improve on the technology of Lara to better understand the data their platform operates on. Working with Google will also help them improve on their Artificial Intelligence systems.
We were limited to doing updates quarterly but we now have the resources to work with a partner that will help us update on commuter needs if it comes on a weekly or monthly basis. Also, we will be leveraging on their technologies to understanding our data better and improve on our AI systems.Samuel Odeloye, Co Founder, Team Lead.
According to Road Preppers, Lagos is not the only state that Lara will operate in. The company has set its sight on states like Oyo, Abuja, Kano, Port-Harcourt and Kaduna as expansion targets for their Artificial Intelligence solution. The partnership with Google puts the company in a better state financially as Odeloye says the tech giant will help them restructure their business model.
The partnership is also a way for Google to expand its operations in Nigeria as it will leverage on the data already generated by Road Preppers to improve its services and make them more relevant to the Nigerian populace.