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AZ Tech Beat | August 23, 2019

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Phoenix says to feed the meter with your smartphone

Phoenix says to feed the meter with your smartphone
Jesse A. Millard

Instead of rummaging through your car’s upholstery for spare change to feed the parking meter when you’re in downtown Phoenix, try Pango Parking. The City of Phoenix recently partnered with Pango USA, a mobile application, to make paying for parking as easy as a click on your phone.

Pango Parking, which is available for Android, iOS, Windows and Blackberry, allows users to pay for a metered parking spot with a smartphone. The service was activated today for parking meters offering credit card payment options and will go live in the coming days for the remaining coin only parking meters, Ben Carpenter said, City of Phoenix.

Read: Tucson startup, Park Genius, developed by U of A students.

Those who complained about the rise in meter prices and hour extensions until 10 p.m. seven days a week, may find this new payment system manageable and keep people downtown longer than normal.

Application features include a car-finder option, location services, a map of the area showing parking spots with rates and notifications that alert the user prior to the meter expiring to add money.

The app will add an additional seven cents to the meter, and when a user initially signs up for the service there is a one dollar authorization fee to make sure a valid credit card number was provided, then it’s refunded.

Pango also allows local businesses to draw customers to their store front with complimentary parking offerings through the app.

Ground teams for Pango have been walking around Phoenix this past week promoting the new application to local businesses, Carpenter said. Stickers and signs promoting the application will be posted on storefront windows and parking meters to let patrons know about the new program.

While there are other parking payment systems on the market, Pango won the contract with the City of Phoenix after rounds of proposals, Carpenter said.

*The article has been updated since its original post for clarification