Innovative Mobility Services

posted in: General | 0

As urbanisation continues, more and more people need a way to get from one place to another on a small space. This imposes a challenge to cities especially in the planning of transportation. In the recent years Information Technology has been introduced to tackle some of these issues, with using services called mobility services. Herzog and Wörndl define mobility services as services and applications supporting the user in finding destinations, routes and relevant information for required means of transport [1]. Mobility Services in this definition make transport within and between cities more convenient, faster, safer or sustainable or motivate people to move in a way that fulfil these requirements [1].

This article aims at introducing three of such Mobility Services that could be considered innovative in a sense that they are introducing a new way of revolutionising mobility.

Yoshi

Yoshi is an application developed for the U.S. market. It aims at saving their customers time by providing a mobile gas service to any location a customers car might be parked. The user of Yoshi can use an app or texting in order to request gas to a specific location. The user therefore does not need to go to a gas station, which might be far away or closed. In addition, Yoshi offers several other services like car washing, oil change or tire checks. Yoshi is not only available to private persons, but can also be used by businesses, who might want to offer the gas service to their employees. This service has been used by namely companies such as Google, Chariot and Stanford [2].

In addition to offering such an innovative service, Yoshi’s payment system has been set up affordable. A user can pay $7 for a one time delivery or a $20 monthly fee to get a weekly delivery. In addition, the price for gas is synced with the local AAA average. Customers can gain reward points by using Yoshi services and can use them to pay for gas or other services [2].

All in all, Yoshi claims to be simple, cost effective and safe by reducing environmental impact.

For more information about Yoshi please see their website:
http://www.startyoshi.com

MaaS

In 2016, Sixt launched an innovative, bundled mobility service called MaaS (Mobility as a Service) [3]. In the App, a user can spend a dedicated mobility budget for all kinds of mobility. They can choose between getting a rental car offered by Sixt, the car sharing service DriveNow or the transfer service myDriver. The budget can be used internationally and for all of Sixt offered rental cars [4].

Sixt first customer in Germany using this revolutionised way of defining mobility is BCG. The cooperation started in August 2017, and since then the number of BCG employees using a company issued mobility service has been doubled [5]. Sixt claims that this service could be used to totally replace the traditional company issued car or could be at least be used for an additional incentive [4]. Especially in the consulting industry mobility is essential as consultants do a lot of traveling. With the MaaS App, BCG can offer an innovative service to its employees offering a flexible possibility to create an individually combined service. As BCG states, the service is especially used by younger employees of the Generation Y [6], the MaaS service bears a lot of potential in the future and might really replace the company issued car one day. Until then, the service can be used as a trendsetter for combining existing mobility services.

Qixxit

Another app linking various ways of mobility is Qixxit, which was launched 2013 in Germany by the Deutsche Bahn. In Germany, Qixxit allows and door-to-door trip planning while using all kinds of transportation such as car, carsharing, train, plane and many more services. The user of Qixxit can individually decide which services he or she might want to use in order to get to the desired destination. Using easy switching buttons, the user can decide for each trip if they want to, for example, allow using a car for this trip. In addition to calculating routes and arrival times using the allowed modes of transport, Qixxit provides the user with an estimated cost for the total door-to-door trip [7].

Using 14 different types of transportation [7], Qixxit can create routes individually and flexible to the customer’s needs. It can therefore be seen as innovative as it changes the way people are traveling. By also showing the prices for each trip, Qixxit might motivate people to take public transportation services such as trains rather than taking their own car. This could potentially have an environmental impact.

All in all, the three introduced services aim at changing the mobility behaviour of their customers by either combining existing mobility services or offering a completely new mobility service. It will be interesting to see, which new services and combinations will appear in the next years as the trend to Mobility as a Service continues to go on especially with the Generation Y.

References

[1] Herzog, Daniel, and Wolfgang Wörndl. “Collaborative and Social Mobility Services.” Digital Mobility Platforms and Ecosystems (2016): 198.
[2] http://www.startyoshi.com on 06.10.2017
[3] http://about.sixt.com/websites/sixt_cc/English/2699/directors-dealings-details.html?newsID=1609897 on 07.10.2017
[4] https://corporate.sixt.com/maas/ on 07.10.2017
[5] https://about.sixt.com/websites/sixt_cc/German/2999/news-details.html?newsID=1641357#news-EQS on 07.10.2017
[6] http://www.automobilwoche.de/article/20170810/Nachrichten/170819998/mobility-as-a-service-sixt-startet-alternative-zum-dienstwagen-mit-bcg on 07.10.2017
[7] Described from the Qixxit App (https://www.qixxit.de/en/) on 08.10.2017

 

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.