The transport sector has remained mostly unchanged as many other industries are being affected by new technologies. Until now that is. Developments in technology that have brought us the sharing economy model (used by Uber and AirBnB) have also led to new ideas in the transport sector.
The transport industry is set to change its model from one that consists of privately owned vehicles and public transit to one that offers multiple options.
According to online magazine Medium, MaaS operators bring different forms of transport including bus, metro or private operators like ride-hailing, taxis, ride-sharing (including newer additions like electric bikes and bicycles) onto a single platform for users. This model could be more convenient and cheaper for users in urban areas where there are increasing numbers of people to transport.
In the article, the MaaS Alliance described MaaS as follows: “Mobility as a Service (MaaS) is the integration of various forms of transport services into a single mobility service [that’s] accessible on demand.”
MaaS can address environmental issues better than established transport can as it’s a better use of resources and alleviates overloaded road traffic and public transport. It also provides a service with customer/user/traveller needs as the main focus, offers mobility rather than transport, and offers the integration of transport services, information, payment and ticketing.
However, before we can enjoy the benefits of a MaaS model, there’s a hurdle the operators will have to overcome. Users will access MaaS options via smart devices, especially smartphones, which will require an exchange of data. Authorities need to decide how data can be shared legally, securely and efficiently for a successful system.
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