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P2P parking (First guest post!)

Roger Dennis is a technology innovation consultant who has worked in a range of industries including banking. His blog is called IdeaPort.

With Dave’s recent blogging on parking, it seemed a natural progression to mention an intersection between information trading and peer to peer payment systems.The SpotScout Equation

While Zopa blazes a trail and becomes the eBay of banking, people are looking at other applications for the eBay model. One of the more interesting ones is SpotScout which is aiming to trade information about parking spaces. While the website is less than clear about SpotScout works, Wired had a recent piece which featured an interview with the founder.

The idea is that if you know you are about to leave your parking space, you send a message via your phone to SpotScout. That information is then broadcast to the mobile phones of people looking for a park. If they pull into your parking spot they pay a fee which is split between SpotScout and you.

The website says they are launching soon in the States, and it’s a business which could work almost anywhere there’s parking problems. It could also easily be integrated into in-car navigation systems, and that could be a killer app.

It would not be hard to imagine driving down the street, following the stress free, seductive tones of your dashboard GPS, when it announces that there should be a park available by the time you arrive, and asks if you want to reserve it.

The only problem with the idea is the acronym. Does peer-to-peer-parking-payment have too many ‘p’s in it?