Since the invention of the automobile, transportation has come a long way. With innovative technologies gearing up to transmute the face of the automotive industry, breakthroughs such as driverless cars and ‘connected car’ are well on their path to commercial reality. As getting around becomes faster and easier, we see an apparent shift in societal attitudes towards mobility itself.
The Future of Mobility
Mobility lies at the heart of the urban life; already, new business models introduced by companies such as Uber and Waymo are dramatically changing the way society views it. However, issues with mobility systems – congestion and pollution – could become even more prominent with increasing urbanization. By 2030, 60% of the world’s population will live in metropolitan areas; coupled with rapid innovation, this will naturally change how people view mobility systems.
With advances such as electrification, connectivity, and autonomy, the future may be arriving sooner than anticipated. Thanks to app-based services, people can now plan commute better and effectively leverage available transport systems. Such advancements also hold macro level advantages for the society with reduced environmental hazards and improved public health.
Shifting Social Attitudes Surrounding Mobility
Even with current technology, ride-hailing is still a costly proposition compared with personal vehicles. Adding self-driving vehicles to the mix would significantly reduce the cost difference between a personal car and a hailed ride, leading to a societal shift in private ownership as shared mobility proves to be cheaper. An autonomous vehicle could also replace most current shared-mobility models such as carpooling and ride-hailing, driving itself to a designated parking spot or to the next customer. This would certainly pave the way for a huge shift in longstanding social attitudes surrounding vehicle ownership, usage, and safety.
Much like transportation, the parking industry is increasing its reliance on technology. Parking data aggregators are now facilitating designated zones for drop-offs and pickups, easing traffic congestion by putting cars to more efficient use. As we go along, this is certain to change the way people approach driving, parking and their daily mobility.
With the emergence of smart mobility management systems, value shifts concerning asset ownership, driving experience, and passenger perspectives will occur. Experience enablers like parking apps will lead to a more relaxed and productive in-transit experience.
Evolving mobility systems will allow people to travel more efficiently and more cheaply. Getting this right would also benefit cities, significantly improving the quality of life for an entire populace. Improved mobility management in the future will also open the gates for data analytics, using technology to drive productivity. The future of ‘human mobility’ is certainly going to see less of ‘human elements’ and more of tech that is integrated into our urban lifestyle like a supportive, endless mesh.