Interview with TTET, Tsquare application developer
Tsquare application was developed by Toyota Tsusho Electronics (Thailand) or TTET by using data from more than 9,000 GPS installed in Taxi to provide real-time traffic information.
I had a chance to interview Mr.Goragot Wongpaisarnsin, Assistant General Manager of TTET about this project.
Who is TTET?
Toyota Tsusho Electronics (Thailand) or TTET is the subsidiary of Toyota. Toyota Motor Japan has founded Toyota Tsusho (Japan). After that, they have founded Toyota Tsusho Thailand, and Toyota Tsusho Electronics (Thailand) accordingly.
TTET has 3 core businesses which are 1) Embedded Softward 2) Device 3) Connected content
How TTET started to collect traffic information with GPS?
TTET started to develop GPS system to collect traffic information in 2011 with the funding from the Ministry of Technology, Japan to install 700 GPS in Bangkok. The result of this initial project showed that the traffic in Bangkok was congested. TTET has seen the business opportunity in this project. Therefore, we started to invest and install more GPS.
In 2012, TTET started to develop an application in collaboration with Toyota called “Smart G-book” (or T-connect) which can be used in some cars.
In 2014, TTET has started to analyse traffic information obtained from the GPS, and started working with Bangkok Administration and WBCSD to launch “Sathorn Model” project which aims to solve the congestion problem in Sathorn area. This project was funded by WBCSD until 2015. After that, Toyota has funded the project until 2016.
Beside Bangkok, TTET has started to collect information in other part of the country, starting from Phuket. The purpose of TTET is to collect nationwide traffic information.
Moreover, TTET in collaborative with Toyota, has expanded our service into other regions such as UAE and KSA.
How to install GPS?
Probe or GPS unit has cost around 3,000-4,000 baht per unit excluding maintenance cost and airtime cost.
TTET probe is different from normal probe as TTET probe will send the data every 3-5 seconds and the accuracy is as high as 70% which is in the same standard as the traffic control system in Japan. We also have field test frequently to check the accuracy of the data.
TTET also deals with Taxi garages (B2B) as the taxi garages also need to install GPS to track the car which become an opportunity for TTET to service and bring in the GPS system for them. The Taxi garages will pay the annual fee and TTET also gives discount in exchange for the traffic data.
When GPS send the data back, we use AWS cloud system to collect the data and analyse.
Not only providing traffic information, TSquare was used to analyse the flood crisis in 2554 and indicate where the flood occurred which helps the government to obtain real-time flooding information.
With this amount of information, is there anything special?
When the rain falls, the traffic will not jam immediately. There will be a lad time around 0.5-1 hour before it starts to jam.
Another thing we noticed is that every Friday evening, the traffic congestion is really bad because people go out for dinner. But what Tsquare discovered is that this pattern also occurs every Thursday evening as well.
What is the goal in the future of TSquare?
We will expand the coverage to all part of Thailand and want to open data to public.
New version of Tsquare will be launched soon. We have modified user interface.
About expanding the market abroad, we need partner to help install GPS system which is the main limitation.
Currently, there are 15 people in the TSquare team. We want all members to be multifunction.