Ride share driver Rosa Chen is always looking for ways to boost her income.
“I do food delivery for Uber Eats… and Postmates before,” said Chen.
Recently, high gas prices have made it even tougher to drive.
“Sometimes I don’t drive because it’s just too expensive,” said Chen.
For the past year, she’s been earning extra cash by turning her hybrid SUV into a moving billboard.
Follow Rich DeMuro on Instagram for more tech news, reviews and cool stuff.
“So far, so good!” said Chen.
She signed up with a Santa Monica based startup called Adway.
“We give our drivers a couple of small and smart projecting devices that can easily attach to the side mirrors of their personal cars and can display ads at will,” explained founder and CEO Sasha Krylov.
He got the idea for the business while out to dinner with his wife. She saw an Audi logo projected off a car door and it occurred to him a similar setup could be used for advertising.
“At the time obviously it was displaying just the logo but she suggested it was trying to tell her something,” said Krylov.
Adway’s proprietary projector clips to a car’s side view mirror. The company helps drivers with the intial setup since it must be hardwired to the car’s battery. The HD projector comes to life at night, displaying bright, moving, eye catching ads.
“These devices are equipped with various sensors and trackers including GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth and a camera,” explained Krylov.
Ads can be customized depending on the area the car is driving in. Bluetooth inside the projector counts the number of unique cell phones nearby so advertisers have an idea of how many people might be seeing their ads.
“We typically favor those drivers that drive the most,” said Krylov.
About 60 drivers are currently using projection technology, mostly in Los Angeles. Many more are interested, with about 5,000 on the waitlist. About a dozen new drivers are onboarded each month.
Krylov says drivers make about $250 a month, plus there are opportunities to earn bonus cash.
“The money is pretty good, I get paid enough to make car payments,” said Chen, who added that the technology is also a conversation starter. “A lot of people actually come up to me and say what is that?”