Movements | October 17th, 2019

Issue #68 -  Brought to you by Michal Naka and Adam Feldman. Join thousands of others who receive this analysis and curation of emerging mobility news in their inbox every week — subscribe now.

Ridehailing

Uber integrates Cityscoot’s electric moped service into their main app in Paris. “Combined with the recently announced integration of public transit to the app, the addition of electric mopeds means Paris will be home to Uber’s largest suite of mobility options. Alongside cars, scooters and bikes, the mopeds will be featured on the home screen as well as in the list of options after inputting a destination.” | TechCrunch

MRT Jakarta is working closely with GoJek to enable easier passenger pick up and drop off at their stations. The goal is to improve the accessibility of their service and increase ridership by providing flexible first / last mile options. | Jakarta Globe

Cabin CEO, Gaetano Crupii, explores the ‘opportunity cost of travel time’ in his latest blog. “A-EV cabin design should not be a linear progression from current automobile interiors. Architecting high-productivity moving spaces is a very different optimization; you are designing experiences that don’t waste time.” |Cabin

Product Launches & Updates

Skip is testing a personal scooter rental service in San Francisco for $25 dollars a week. | Bryan Weis

Ola launches their cloud kitchens and focuses on building out their own food brands. | Inc42

Uber is experimenting with “Uber Pet” product on it’s ride app. | The Verge

Uber adds Boat Taxis to its product lineup in Nigeria. | Bloomberg

Pony rolls out its micromobility operations eBike and trailer in Europe. | Pony

Micromobility

Autonomous scooter startup Tortoise anounces a first deployment in Georgia. The costs associated with fleet repositioning and collection for charging and maintenance are major drivers of profitability or lack thereof for scooter operators. Reducing those costs through autonomous solutions could be a major win for these companies. | Axios

Micromobility operators are partnering with law enforcement on sting operations to crack down on scooter theft. “Wind’s sting operation was not an isolated attempt to curb wholesale theft. Earlier in July, it began hiding secondary GPS trackers inside a small number of “dummy” scooters in cities where high rates of vehicles were being lost.” | Bloomberg

MIT released a paper on the potential impact of shared autonomous scooters.  “We show that the availability of self-repositioning capabilities can help achieve up to 10 times higher utilization of vehicles than possible in current bike-share systems.”  | Arxiv

Scooter consolidation: Spanish scooter startup Koko (acquired by Circ) reflects on the brutal competition in Europe. “Because the high number of competitors forces constant product improvement… We realised that we needed to make a big investment in order to be competitive in this capital and technology-intensive business.” | Sifted

Scooter injuries are in decline in New Zealand according to the national accident agency, as Auckland celebrates 1-year of shared scooters and over 2 million trips. | Stuff

Scooter ridership is down in San Diego as the city enforces new rules: “Ridership is down, as measured by average daily trips, from 33,000 in July to 17,000 in the first half of September.”  | San Diego Tribune

Bird’s Chief Legal & Policy Officer, David Estrada, is leaving the company. | Techcrunch

Cities & Policy

Pittsburgh is leading the way with plans for an exciting mobility as a service offering. “Their winning plan, which was one of five submissions, envisions “mobility hubs” clustered near transit stops throughout Pittsburgh. There, travelers would find some combination of bike-share stations, Zipcar vehicles, Waze carpool pickup spots, and parked and charged e-bikes and scooters from Spin to rent. The Transit app would handle route planning and ticketing services to customers, and Ford Mobility would feed data analytics back to the city.” Successfully replacing a significant number of private car trips will require collaboration across multiple services like these and city governments, so this is an exciting proof of concept for the model. | CityLab

NYC’s Transit Tech Lab expands its scope for 2020. In addition to the MTA, Amtrak, the Taxi and Limousine Commission, NJ Transit, and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey have joined in. This program was very successful at helping early technology companies work with the MTA in 2019, so we’re really excited to see what they can accomplish with the expanded scope. | Smart Cities Dive

NYC DOT turned 14th street into a dedicated busway, banning private cars between third and ninth avenues. The project has been a huge success so far, with average travel times on one of the city’s slowest bus routes improving by 30% with no change in average vehicle speeds on surrounding streets. SFMTA is in the process of approving similar changes to Market Street. As these projects prove successful, they will likely inspire copycats in other cities. | WSJ

A really interesting discussion of authoritative maps. How do we handle the tensions between accuracy, coverage, freshness, ownership, policy goals, and authority? | Kevin Webb

Fundraising & Deals

US Electric Moped startup Revel raises a $27.5 million Series A. | Techcrunch

Uber is making a majority investment in South American grocery delivery startup Cornership. | Dara Khosrowshahi

Wheels raises $50 million. | Techcrunch

Jobs

Our friends at Tusk Ventures are hiring an analyst in New York City. Tusk has been in the mobility space since Uber, and are Bird and Nexar investors. The team is looking for candidates with startup operating experience, no banking, VC, or consulting required! | Tusk

Movements | October 10th, 2019

Issue #67 -  Brought to you by Michal Naka and Adam Feldman. Join thousands of others who receive this analysis and curation of emerging mobility news in their inbox every week — subscribe now.

Micromobility

The makers of Scooter Map, launched Spring, a software platform for micromobility operators. Spring provides the rider app, operations app, admin dashboard, and IOT connectivity for $10 / scooter / month with an emphasis on efficient operations. | Spring

Superpedestrian shows off its scooters ability to store maps and geofences onboard the device. “Operators can apply rules including speed and parking limits and the vehicle enforces them within 1 second - or 7 meters in full speed - an order of magnitude better than current industry standards.” | Superpedestrian

An interview with the former GM of Bird France. Interesting stat: “Bird France alone has grown this year into a $35m+ business.”  | TheStartup

A 59-year old man in Fort Lauderdale was arrested and charged after cutting the brake lines on over 100 shared scooters in the city. | The Verge

Video interview with Bird CEO Travis VanderZanden. The company is focused on 3 business lines: sharing, platform, and ownership. "The unit economics are positive. We certainly have a lot of work to do on Opex. We are not fully loaded profitable yet, but we are profitable at the ride level and the city level." | Techcrunch

Lime’s President Joe Kraus sees little value in acquiring smaller scooter operators: “I absolutely believe that most of our users have multiple scooter apps on their phone. But what matters is: what is the first one you open?”  | Financial Times (Paid)

Bird is hiring a eCommerce manager to help build out their retail business. | Bird

Ridehailing & Carsharing

New Uber safety feature could let riders record audio in rides. | Digital Trends

Can carsharing survive? Former Reach Now CEO, Steve Banfield, reflects on the recent influx of freefloating systems that have shut down across North America. Steve looks into the different factors at play: city design, permit fees, law enforcement, and ownership habits.  | Steve Banfield

New Investments & Deals

Bird announced its $275 million dollar Series D round last week. The company plans to continue to scale across cities, especially in Europe. “We believe the cash will last for a few years.” | Techcrunch

Tier Mobility raised a $60 million dollar Series B round as the company crossed 10 million trips in 11 months. “We have a clear path to create a new type of vehicle and we’re not far away, and it’s suited for cities and will be good in rainy seasons.” | Bloomberg

Movements | October 2nd, 2019

Scooters in Paris, Car2go ends service, and Apple Pay Transit features!

Issue #66 -  Brought to you by Michal Naka and Adam Feldman. Join thousands of others who receive this analysis and curation of emerging mobility news in their inbox every week — subscribe now.


Micromobility

Lime claims the majority of their riders are locals, not tourists: “On average, 82% of survey respondents stated that they live, work, or go to school where they ride Lime.” | Lime

San Francisco announced new scooter permits for Jump, Scoot (Bird), Lime, and Spin. Each company can deploy up to 1,000 vehicles with the chance to increase their caps to 2,500 in the coming year. Ironically, all 3 companies that launched in San Francisco ‘without permission’ in March of 2018 and set off the national media firestorm were among the permit recipients. Does the ‘ask for forgiveness strategy’ work after all? | SF Examiner

Uber’s micromobility robotics team is working on sidewalk detection. | Ryan Rzepecki

“After less than one year in operation, e-scooters have reached a modal share of between 0.8 to 2.2% in Paris.” | Carbone 4

JUMP unveiled their micromobility swappable battery kiosks that are set to launch in markets in 2020. This mitigates one of the major operational pain points of running an e-bike or scooter service.  | Megan Rose Dickey

Gogoro launches a new swappable battery electric commuter moped starting at $1800. Related: Gogoro now has over 1,400 battery swap stations around Taiwan. | The Verge

Ridehailing

Uber launches their official incubator to test new business ideas on the Uber platform. It’s open to both internal and external hires. | Techcrunch

Lyft blocked Transit app’s access to Citibike payments in NYC. | Transit

New Products & Updates

Apple Wallet adds native transit account management features in iOS 13 starting with the Suica transit card in Japan. Translation: You don’t need a 3rd party app to add funds to your transit card. | Ata Distance

Volvo launched their new station based carsharing brand ‘M’ in Stockholm. One of the cool things about Volvo’s carshare is that there are no logos or paint jobs on their vehicles. Leave it to the Swedes to keep a clean and minimalist design! | Volvo Car Mobility

This startup founded by two ex-airline route planners, wants US airlines to replace smaller regional jets with their new bus service. “Landline will act almost as a Sun Country Express. Customers will have everything on the same ticket, and if the bus or the flight is late, the airline and Landline will make sure the passenger still reaches the final destination”.  | Skift

Uber launched a major update to their mobile app and revealed a whole range of new product features, all aimed at becoming the operating system for your everyday life. New safety features, multimodal trip planning in more cities, exclusive virtual restaurants, loyalty programs for Eats customers, and a bunch of updates for drivers. | The Verge

Cities & Policy

Car2go announces it’s ending free floating carshare service in 5 North American cities. Related: City officials in Calgary are sitting down with Car2go executives to understand their decision to pull out. | Geekwire

Phase 2 of Calgary’s eBike share program was supposed to welcome new operators and up to 10,000 eBikes. However, no companies applied for a permit. “We are seeing more people using scooters than bikes.” | Live Wire Calgary

A German policy think tank and city association put together a great report and overview on German scooter regulations (Bonus: it’s all in english!).  | Agora

Jersey City partners with Via to launch an on demand bus service. “This new system creates virtual bus stops, meaning it sets up digitally the most efficient places for people to go to get picked up and dropped off,” said Brian David Platt, business administrator in Jersey City. “We’ll have a cash option, we’ll have a debit-card option. We are trying to be as accessible and available to all of our residents.” | NJTV

Movements | September 25th, 2019

Issue #65 -  Brought to you by Michal Naka and Adam Feldman. Join thousands of others who receive this analysis and curation of emerging mobility news in their inbox every week — subscribe now.

Micromobility

Micromobility operator Bolt joins Bird by now making its fleet model “BoltChariot” and “BoltOne” scooters available to purchase by the public. Both vehicles feature dual cameras, Bolt’s ‘MobilityOS’, and access to Bolt Service Centers. Bolt claims that you can earn extra income by renting out your personal vehicle in your local shared Bolt fleet. | Bolt

Cities are experimenting with ‘geo-fence’ technology, which require micromobility operators to cut vehicle power or reduce speed in certain geographic areas like parks or plazas. This can lead to less than ideal ride experience for users who are already struggling to navigate cities that lack basic infrastructure for non-auto road users. Reducing vehicle speed oftentimes clogs bike lanes and incentivizes users to ride on sidewalks. |  LA Times

Who uses Brussels’ scooters? | The Bulletin

Remember next time you hear about scooter complaints in your city: “Just saw some City of San Diego numbers showing 74 percent of scooter complaints come from the same 10 people.” Official data.  | Jeremy Ogul

Fehrs and Peers released a market assessment for shared bikes and scooters.”This spatial analysis approximates the suitability of urbanized areas for shared micromobility services, considering land use and transportation factors as well as entertainment, tourism, and education destinations.” | Fehrs & Peers

Ridehailing

Uber launches “RideCheck”, a new safety feature  that monitors if your ride deviates from its expected path or detect if you were in a crash. Here is a video demo of the features in action.  | Mashable

Lime is shutting down its ‘LimePod’ free-floating carshare experiment down in Seattle. “Lime says it is shutting down the LimePod service because it couldn’t find a partner to deploy an electric fleet.”  | Geekwire

New Investments & Deals

Toyota AI Ventures invests in a Series A extension for Skip Scooters. CEO & co-founder Sanjay Dastoor expounds more about the Toyota investment on Twitter: “We invest more upfront cost in diagnostic sensors and a module architecture, then we identify problems sooner and can get a vehicle safely back on road faster. That means more rides and less cost.”  | Toyota AI

Landline has raised a seed round from Upfront Ventures. They’re building out a simple, consistent, and reliable bus service that connects rural customers to airports. | TechCrunch

BlaBlaCar is acquiring Busfor, a platform for bus trips in Russia. This follows last year’s acquisition of Ouibus, SNCF’s bus platform, and sets them up as a major competitor to FlixBus in Europe. | VentureBeat

Product Launches & Updates

Square’s Cash App had started to partner with transit agencies to offer “Boosts” to riders who pay with their Cash card. | Luke Beard

Lyft made some major changes to their iOS app this week, making scooters, bikes, public transit, car rentals, shared rides, and regular old Lyft rides available right when users open the app. | Lyft

Lyft’s app is also starting to show bike lanes. Let’s hope for some directions in the future! | Engadget

Postmates partnered with Phantom Auto to bring teleoperations to its fleet of sidewalk delivery robots. “Cars are two-ton machines that are moving at 50 miles an hour making millisecond decisions that are very consequential from a risk point of view. They can't really stop and think and ask for help. On a sidewalk, you can stop any time and ask that remote operator who is always monitoring. You're only moving at 3 miles an hour and weigh 100 pounds or so.” | Forbes

Amazon made some big news this week as they committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2040. One of the biggest pieces of this effort will be moving Amazon’s entire delivery and logistics operations to a fleet of 100,000 electric vehicles that they’re purchasing from Rivian. | NY Times

Musings

Kara Swisher provides an update on her attempt to live without owning a car. “Overall, I’d say I’ve used cars about half as much as before, and my total spending on transportation is less than what I used to spend when I had a car.” She also notes that travel and logistics require a lot more planning now, she’s more sensitive to transit delays, and has increasingly relied on last-mile modes like e-scooters to pair with public transit. | NY Times

San Francisco, like most US cities, is awash in parking. There’s just so much of it. Michael Keating dives into some ways that we could repurpose that space and how it might transform the city. | Michael Keating

Movements | September 18th, 2019

Microautonomy public demo, Lime hits 100 million trips, and new hardware!

Issue #64 -  Brought to you by Michal Naka and Adam Feldman. Join thousands of others who receive this analysis and curation of emerging mobility news in their inbox every week — subscribe now.


Micromobility

After nearly two years of development, Karmic announces the new ‘Oslo’ micromobility vehicle. The class 2 eBike breaks the mold of what is considered an ‘eBike’ and brings in inspiration from standup scooters into a beautifully designed hydroformed aluminum chassis. The Oslo is now available for pre-order, starting at $1500 (the same price as a high-end iPhone Pro Max) on Kickstarter. The Oslo looks to be ushering in a new era for micromobility vehicle design that is approachable for the masses. One twitter commentator said: “eBikes are twice as appealing to me as a cyclist when they don't look like a low-end bike with the motorized bits hanging off of it, and even more appealing to non-cyclists when they don't look like an old bike.”

Lime hits 100 million trips after 26 months of operations. Related: Berlin sets Lime’s record for the fastest city to reach 1 million scooters trips… in 80 days.  | Lime

Ridehailing firm Ola, has launched its motorized bike product in 150 cities across India. |  Techcrunch

Micromobility autonomy or ‘microautonomy’ startup Tortoise appeared with their first public demo in Georgia last week. “Excited to help Peachtree Corners be the first US city to introduce safe & sustainable shared micromobility with automated vehicle repositioning!”  Related: Podcast interview with Tortoise co-founder and former Uber executive Dmitry Shevelenko on Uber’s road into micromobility. | Tortoise

India’s Yulu, an electric micromobility company, partners with Delhi Metro and hopes to launch 5,000 vehicles at transit stations by the end of the year in the country’s capital city. | Economic Times

Ridehailing

Uber laid off over 400 employees from their product, design, and engineering team last week. “The layoffs came after Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi asked every member of his executive leadership team if they were to start from scratch, would their respective organizations look the way they do today.” | Techcrunch

Uber launched a mobility research grant fund pilot to support research on ridehailing and mobility in underserved communities. | Uber

Cities & Policy

The Île-de-France transport authority of Paris plans to offer citizens €500 to buy an e-bike in 2020. The subsidy will be given to citizens "regardless of their economic situation."  This is great news and we hope to see more governments adopt this policy! | DW

Interview with AirGarage CEO and co-founder Jonathon Barkl who is building a managed marketplace for physical space, starting with parking lots. He dives into aligning incentives for urban real estate, future use cases for parking lots for micromobility, and other new forms of transport.  “So, what we're trying to do is take these spaces that have traditionally been single-use, single-tenant spaces and transform them. Once we transform them into multi-tenant, multi-use spaces, we can open them up for many drivers to come in and use.”  | Double Sided

The Regional Plan Association issued recommendations on how to get congestion pricing right in NYC. In short, ensure transit and bike alternatives are in place ahead of time, plan for future hardware needs, price dynamically, and limit exemptions. | RPA

Cabin’s take on the future of inter-city travel: large format vehicles that enable a range of new uses. | Cabin

Scoot founder Michael Keating writes an op-ed on micromobility titled ‘Safety is where the rubber hits the road’. “Their number one concern (shared by a full 90 percent of our riders) isn’t the heavy, fast cars on the road next to them, it is the roads themselves — specifically the lack of bike lanes and hazards like potholes.” | SF Chronicle

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