Launched on the 5th of March 2017, Lara is best know as a chat bot for availing public transportation directions in developing countries. Currently in Lagos, Nigeria.
Résumé: Lara est un système d'intelligence artificielle qui aide les utilisateurs à se déplacer d'un point à un autre en fournissant des instructions détaillées, textuelles, pas à pas et des estimations tarifaires précises.
Founded by Sam Odeloye (CEO), Nnamdi Nwanze (CTO) and Ladi Ojora (COO); Lara is an artificial intelligence system that assists users to get from one point to another by providing detailed, text-based, step-by-step directions and accurate fare estimates.
To make the app functional, a systematic approach to collecting data, sorting and delivering it to users in a format that’s easily accessible and interactive was created.Click Lara RP to see how the interface is interactive.
With a cleverly designed User Interface that mimics popular chat app, Whats-App, users are compelled to discuss with Lara as they would with family and friends, thus creating an interactive experience. See figure below.
User could go a head to request a shared taxi cab heading the same direction as theirs. See Figure above.
Future Expectations from Lara
“Soon Lara will also be available on Facebook Messenger because easy accessibility to her users is major priority for Lara,” says Ladi Ojora.
As Africa Mobilities Observatory - AMO, we believe Startups such as Lara are a necessity for everyone 21st century due to the fact that public transportation data is not publicly available anywhere in cities of developing countries, due to the fragmented system of public transit within these regions. Often times, people have to rely on Google Maps to find their way around. But even Google Maps, and most other foreign mapping services, do not have a locally relatable approach to delivering public transit data. Likewise, they do not give any estimation of fares.
If you were to be in Lagos, would you chose this over Google-Map?
By Joseph Semuju
Community Manager - AMO
African Mobilities Observatory - AMO, MICHELIN.