The rise of Mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) platforms, shared and networked vehicles, and other transportation technologies have changed the way we think about cities, transport, and dataWilliam (Billy) Riggs, Professor of Planning, Engineering and Management, University of San Francisco
The concept of travel is changing - quickly. We now trust strangers to drive us around in their vehicles; car owners offer their mini vans for rent by the hour; dockless electric scooters and mopeds are ubiquitous in many cities, available by the minute. Instead of buying, leasing, or owning a vehicle, today we can ”subscribe” to the mobility services.
A decade ago, these business models seemed futuristic, and a number of questions emerged:
- Will they work?
- Can technology support them?
- How will payment work?
- Is insurance available, let alone can it be priced to accommodate task or usage-based consumption?
The answer to all of the above is “yes”. Today, this is our reality. But today didn’t arrive overnight. We believe Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) will have a similar trajectory: slowly, then all of a sudden. It is not ubiquitous in every city today, but if ride-sharing and last-mile delivery going from infancy to global scale in the last five to eight years is any indication, MaaS will be here before we know it. Megatrends - including urbanization, new transportation consumption patterns, a change in customer expectations, rapidly evolving technology, and city innovation - are shaping the future of mobility.
New models have emerged to address transportation needs across a range of distances. These include ride-share, car-share, car subscriptions, and micromobility, with more surely on the horizon. Today, these solutions do not replace but are intended to augment existing modes of transportation. Each model represents a step forward in enabling us to shift preferences from private vehicle ownership to MaaS. MaaS aspires to provide a single entry point for all possible mobility solutions and allow for integrated and seamless customer experiences, including payment and insurance across the journey.
Companies reshaping mobility and offering on-demand services will need to identify key drivers to changing behaviors, address inconveniences, and understand what customers are willing to pay in return for the added benefits. Balancing ideal requirements with regulations, environmental conditions, data-sharing requirements, and city infrastructure readiness will define the winners in this competitive market.
Current trends and future scenarios
This paper explores the components of MaaS that are present today. It summarizes the landscape, opportunities, and risks. The paper also explores future mobility models emerging in commercial freight, robo-taxis and integrated mobility, and the associated technical, regulatory and workforce considerations. Mobility is also a space where insurance and actuarial sciences have an important role to play. Emerging mobility models, the reduction of driver-related mistakes, and the complexity of components required to operate without failure, require thoughtful discussions and action.
An exciting future lies in more than the sum of existing mobility models – ride-share, car-share, car subscription, micromobility, on-demand freight, robo-taxis, integrated mobility, and more. Taken together, MaaS has a number of opportunities and challenges. Winners will solve the MaaS opportunity in collaboration with cities, and with each other.