India News | Think of Us as Android of Video Telematics World: LightMetrics Co-founder Pushkar Patwardhan

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New Delhi, Oct 18 (PTI) Intrigued that over 94 per cent of accidents result from human mistakes, a group of engineers in February 2015 pooled their expertise in artificial intelligence, machine learning and computer vision to enhance road safety. The result was LightMetrics, recounts its co-founder Pushkar Patwardhan.

The group of six, who had previously worked with Nokia Research, decided to focus on helping humans become safer drivers and got together to form the company offering advanced video telematics solutions.

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Cut to present. LightMetrics today offers an AI-based platform for real-time driver coaching and associated driver safety analytics to enterprises in the automotive ecosystem.

“The addressable market for LightMetrics is quite substantial, with over 200 million commercial vehicles around the world. This presents a significant opportunity for growth,” Patwardhan told PTI.

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“Think of us as the Android of the video telematics world, where our software can work with a wide range of cameras and devices,” he added.

LightMetrics is on an expansion drive and plans to enhance products, explore new opportunities, and bolster sales and marketing efforts to tap growth.

Amazon Web Services (AWS), said Patwardhan, has revolutionised operations, as it accelerates data analysis, enhances platform reliability, and seamlessly scales with increasing user demands.

Excerpts from the interview:

Q: Could you take us through the journey of LightMetrics, and the defining milestones in that journey?

A: LightMetrics was founded in February 2015 by a group of six engineers who previously worked at Nokia Research. We wanted to use our expertise in technologies like edge AI, machine learning, and computer vision to enhance road safety.

We were intrigued by the fact that over 94 per cent of accidents result from human mistakes. While the automotive OEMs (original equipment manufacturer) are focused on making roads safer with safer vehicles, we decided to complement that by focusing on helping humans become safer drivers.

Our focus is on the business-to-business (B2B) market, specifically targeting commercial vehicle fleets and auto insurance companies. We realised that these industries were keen to decrease expenses related to unsafe driving practices.

We began our journey in India and later shifted our attention to North America as our primary market. This strategic move allowed us to better understand the needs of our customers and address their concerns more effectively.

As we concentrated on North America, we secured partnerships with large telematics service providers to augment the insights they provided to fleets with insights from video. This validation further reinforced our confidence in both the problem we were addressing and the way we were approaching its solution.

Q: What is the addressable market for LightMetrics, and the strategy to grow?

A: The addressable market for LightMetrics is quite substantial, with over 200 million commercial vehicles around the world. This presents a significant opportunity for growth. Additionally, the video telematics market, which involves using videos for vehicle monitoring, is experiencing a strong 18 per cent annual growth rate in the US and Europe.

Our approach to tap into these growth opportunities involves two key strategies — focus on partnerships, and hardware-agnostic approach.

Think of us as the ‘Android of the video telematics world’, where our software can work with a wide range of cameras and devices. This flexibility allows us to cater to a large portion of the global market.

Q: How has LightMetrics grown in the past years and what are your future plans?

A: In the past year, LightMetrics has experienced significant growth. We’ve installed our solutions in three times more vehicles compared to the previous year. Our team has also expanded from 25 to 65 people, with new team members joining us from Europe, the United States, and Latin America.

In April this year, we successfully secured funding from Sequoia Capital India (now known as Peak XV). This funding will play a crucial role in supporting our growth plans. We’ll be using these investments to enhance our products, explore new opportunities, and strengthen our sales and marketing efforts. All through the last year, we have been actively hiring globally.

Q: How has LightMetrics leveraged technology to drive operations?

A: Our product consists of three important parts, the first being smart camera software. We’ve developed software that’s installed directly on the cameras. This software adds intelligence to the cameras by using AI and ML (artificial intelligence and machine learning) technologies. This smart software enables us to analyse driving behavior and improve fleet safety. It works with Android dashcams.

Further, our operations heavily depend on a cloud-based backend system. We host this system mainly on Amazon Web Services (AWS). This cloud infrastructure supports the storage and processing of the data collected from the cameras.

We also offer tools like dashboards on the web, as well as apps for iOS and Android devices.

Q: How have you embraced new technologies like big data, AI and ML to stay ahead?

A: AI and ML are at the heart of LightMetrics – unlike a lot of others, we do almost all of the AI on the edge, that is on the device. Since we deal with video, it is impossible to upload huge amounts of video to the cloud for doing AI on the cloud. The benefit of edge AI is the real-time feedback to drivers when they drive in a risky manner – for example, if the driver is drowsy, there is a lot of value in alerting the driver in real-time.

On the other hand, big data tech enables us to gather insights from the metadata that is uploaded to the cloud from all vehicles. Several features on our LightMetrics product dashboard use big data tools under the hood to provide insights into how the vehicle is being driven, drivers who are doing well, drivers who need to be coached, what they need to be coached for, among others.

Q: What benefits have you experienced running on AWS?

A: AWS has revolutionized our operations. It accelerates data analysis, enhances platform reliability, and seamlessly scales with increasing user demands. By alleviating server management burdens, we channel our focus into advancing our product and fulfilling our mission of safer roads for all.

AWS cloud offers so many well thought out services, that frees us from development tasks. AWS support system is fantastic (their online support, account management makes it a preferred cloud to work with).

For a company so large, the customer service that AWS provides is something we aspire towards – given the extraordinary customer support and service from AWS, from the routine to optimal architectures for new applications we are working on, we can always count on them.

(This story has been produced by PTI in collaboration with Amazon Web Services).

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from Syndicated News feed, LatestLY Staff may not have modified or edited the content body)





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