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Companies Launch AI-Fueled Support Road Maintenance System

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June 3, 2020- According to a report by Venture Beat, SoftBank has teamed up with two other Japanese companies to create a joint venture, i-Probe, which will support road maintenance programs in the U.S.

Initially, i-Probe was created as a subsidiary of Pacific Consultants (PCKK), a Japanese construction services company. In March, it became a joint venture owned by SoftBank, PCKK, and Oriental Consultants Global, an engineering services company. 

By combining the specialities of the three companies, i-Probe will use real-time data from connected cars to sell insights to public agencies that are in charge of fixing road defects like potholes and bumps.

i-Probe told Venture Beat that they gather data from tire sensors already installed on connected cars. The data is used to generate visualizations of road conditions, which illustrate the severity of road defects and can help road maintenance crews prioritize workloads.

A spokesperson for i-Probe told Venture Beat that i-Probe began a partnership with the San Diego Regional Proving Ground, which tests technology that connects to vehicles. i-Probe has also signed a deal with an unnamed automaker to continue developing their technology.

Prototype vehicles have begun testing, but i-Probe doesn’t expect to launch for another few years, according to the story.

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