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BMW details 'dynamic parking prediction' research

The technology promises to shorten the search for vacant on-street parking in big cities.

BMW has detailed an upcoming ConnectedDrive feature, known as Dynamic Parking Prediction, that is currently in the research phase of development.

As the name implies, the technology aims to help drivers quickly find a vacant on-street parking spot, particularly in big cities, rather than aimlessly circling blocks hunting for an open space.

The feature takes advantage of existing real-time movement data from vehicle fleets, tracking when other individual vehicles are either leaving a parking spot or also driving around and looking for a vacant spot.

"Based on the digital map, the local prediction algorithm and the parking data from the fleet vehicles, the research application calculates current parking options in a given area, for example a particular part of town," BMW explains. "The number of currently vacant parking spaces and the number of drivers looking for parking are both factored into the calculation."

The company hopes the technology will both reduce the parking-search headache for BMW drivers and reduce congestion when large numbers of commuters are simultaneously driving around neighborhoods looking for parking in an area that is already saturated.

The capabilities will be demonstrated in a prototype i3 this week at the TU-Automotive Detroit conference.

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