The South Australian government has offloaded its Addinsight traffic intelligence system to robotics company SAGE Automation after a review recommended “immediate divestment”.
Infrastructure and transport minister Corey Wingard revealed the decision on Thursday, with SAGE to look after all future development of the software tool.
The system, developed by the then Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure in 2012, provides real-time and predictive updates of traffic movements and congestion.
It does this by using beacons installed on the Adelaide road network to identity movement of Bluetooth and wi-fi devices.
De-identified aggregate data is then used by the government’s Traffic Management Centre to monitor and improve traffic flows. An app was also developed for public use in 2016.
Wingard said SAGE was chosen following an expression of interest in 2020 as it has the “experience and technical expertise required to further enhance the Addinsight offering”.
“What was initially developed to be used in-house, is now used by customers and road users around Australia and New Zealand – it has been a great success story of South Australia,” he said.
“However, the [Department of Infrastructure and Transport’s] core business is not to manage and develop a commercial software product.”
Wingard said the department had consulted with the Office of the Chief Entrepreneur in 2019 on “opportunities to further strengthen Addinsight”.
An external review was subsequently commissioned, which recommended “immediate divestment from Addinsight to maximise its attractiveness as a potential investment”.
The government previously said that continuing to develop the system to ensure it remained relevant and up to date would require a “substantial amount of taxpayer dollars”.
Under the terms of the deal, the department will continue to have access to Addinsight data and will partner with SAGE to identify further opportunities to use the system in Adelaide, Wingard said.
SAGE CEO Adrian Fahey said Addinsight was already the “perfect platform” for collecting, analysing and using road data to support operations, infrastructure planning and better event response.
“Imagine a world that ensures reduced frustration experienced by road users, less road signage, better planned road maintenance and reduction in traffic management costs,” he said.
“Addinsight can enable the future connectivity of vehicle to infrastructure communications, which will help to futureproof our road networks for the next generation of mobility.”
The SA government’s decision to commercialise Addinsight comes a week after NSW abandoned its plans to commercialise the Sydney coordinated adaptive traffic system (SCATS).