Happy New Year!
We hope that the start of the new year is treating you well. As we leave 2021 behind, we believe it’s important to reflect on all of the wonderful opportunities we have had. Whether it be winning the Open Data Award for Impact, to launching Marketplace Milton and myDurham 311, we hope that you enjoy our year in review as much as we have enjoyed 2021. Here’s to 2022 and all that is to come!
CEO / Co-founder
It would not be possible without your support, we look forward to all the exciting new things to come in the future!
In the Spring, we launched Marketplace Milton as a convenient way to access local business information in the Halton Region and the Region of Peel.
With the knowledge that voice searches are becoming more common with consumers, Qwhery made it that much easier to simply ask Google Assistant or Alexa questions by saying “ask Marketplace Milton”, and then “find my nearest nail salon!”
Marketplace Milton was created as a Community Collaboration project, with support from Digital Street’s Future Proof program, to aid small businesses in their voice-activated search results presence. Furthermore, to reach those consumers who often use voice when searching for shopping options. Ensuring local businesses are found in search results instead of solely national chains and franchises is essential to ensure the preservation of these small businesses.
This Digital Main Street project was made possible through financial support from the Government of Canada through FedDev Ontario’s Regional Relief and Recovery Fund.
The Entrepreneurship World Cup occurs annually and provides startups the chance to pitch their business models to a panel of judges for a chance to win prizes to assist in their endeavours. On August 17th, we had the pleasure of participating in the Entrepreneurship World Cup as a Canadian National Finalist.
9 startups were given the chance to present their pitches for a chance to go global to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to pitch in the World Finals.
On September 13th, Qwhery was named the recipient of the Open Data for Impact Award by the Canadian Open Data Society, a national nonprofit that represents open data supporters promoting and supporting open data initiatives across Canada.
We were recognized for our efforts in using our platform and tools to make COVID-19 data and information more accessible and available to the public.
During December, Qwhery was given the System Ready Speciality designation by Esri and Esri Canada. We cherish this accomplishment and will continue to present this designation with pride. This designation expresses that we are devoted to continually ensuring our products support and add to Esri’s leading geospatial technology.
Qwhery, in partnership with Durham Region, launched the Region’s first-of-its-kind smart home device voice service, myDurham 311. The new service, available through Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa was created to help users access information and answers to their questions with more ease, and less waiting.
This opportunity was made possible through Qwhery’s success in the Smart City Challenge, hosted by Durham Region, Ontario Centre of Innovation, and Spark Centre. The challenge asked various enterprises to help make Regional services more publicly accessible, and through Qwhery’s prior knowledge and tools, we were able to develop the collaboration.
To further accomplish Qwhery’s mission to improve community outreach and experience, Qwhery worked with Sugar Land, Texas, to develop and have a pilot release for ‘Ask Sugar Land’. As a voice service, it provides answers to residents’ local inquiries.
We also had the pleasure to co-present with the City of Sugar Land at the Texas BeSpatial GIS Day event in November. TxGIS Day celebrates the advancement of geospatial technology, and we are happy to have been a part of that experience, while broadening our outreach with our voice-first systems.
Thank you for your continued use and interest in our Q11 system. Since its release, we have reached numerous cities and communities to aid in their experience with local inquiry. We’ve added additional updates extending the use of Q11 for any city looking to create an omnichannel for communication and connect to our API.
New Capabilities Added:
- Waste Collection Schedules – “Alexa, when’s my next garbage day?”
- What goes where? “Hey Google, can I recycle used tinfoil?”
- Street Sweeping progress “Alexa, when will my street be cleaned?”
- Capital Projects “Hey Google, what’s being built nearby?”
- Building Permits “Alexa, is there a building permit for that?”
- Mosquito spray areas “Hey Google, when will my neighborhood be sprayed?”
- Emergency Alerts “Alexa, what’s happening in my city?”
- Knowledge Base – FAQs that can be defined by your organization. What are the top questions your call center handles that could be diverted to Alexa or Google assistant?
- News Articles – Keep your residents up to date with interesting topics and activities going on in your City.
- Along with ArcGIS, Qwhery now integrates with:
- Bang the Table – an online community engagement tool.
- ReCollect – digital waste collection tools and scheduling.
- Active Network – online event and activity registration software.
- GTFS Real-time Transit Feeds – Real-time transit locations and timings to your nearest bus stops.
Have an idea? Want to try out Q11 and Voice Technology for your city?
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org – we’d love to work with you to experiment and build something useful and innovative for your community.