3 days showing self-driving shuttles capabilities brought autonomous driving to next level of experience.
Some experiences are worth sharing and there is no better way to show a self-driving vehicle than riding in real everyday scenarios. Olli (#meetOlli), an autonomous shuttle performed 3 days of rides for more than 300 guests from all over the world to prove its new capabilities. Thanks to the RoboticResearch partnership with LocalMotors a new software platform and sensor sets have been designed and integrated into Olli.
The experience brought passengers on a ride smoothly, reaching up to 19 Mph, crossing pedestrians and cyclists intersections, with vehicle overtaking and signal recognition. But dynamic obstacles avoidance has been one of the most interesting tests. Every group was asked to move barriers located in the path of the vehicle and based on the software OLLI changed its trajectory each time to determine the safest possible route to drive forward as published in official Local Motors social media feed
The event gathered also a number of partners in fleet management , engineering services, insurance, HMI experience, mapping, operators and financing. It is clearly an entire ecosystem built to support self driving vehicles coming to market and providing all the necessary supporting tools to manage barriers to introduce this new technology.
Autonomous driving is the forefront of mobility and an entire industry will be shaped in the future according to new services, business models and players.
Next step is to bring confidence to the public around autonomous vehicles, deploying vehicles and proving how safe this technology can be. It’s a long way to go to reach fully autonomy but the journey will definitely be exciting. See you on the roads this summer!
Strategy, pillars and operations for autonomous driving fleet management business (part 1)
We are quite aware that future business model for carmakers is mobility oriented more than car focused. All brands are moving to become miles/km providers, much bigger market than struggling selling cars to dealers and customers.
Weekly news support this future.. but the focus of this post is more about the business side. How to make money in this new shaping industry?
The convergence of electric and autonomous technologies, public regulations, tradeoff between public/private business, integration of fleet management, long-term and short-term rentals are disrupting multiple traditional businesses and shaping a completely new competitive arena where different industries want to play the game.
We see car makers directly moving to mobility (brand like Moia, Maven, IMotion, Moovel, Lynk&co just to mention few ones) or huge public transports operators (Deutsche-Bahn, Transdev, Keolis) extending their offer to ride-sharing pilots, or big rental companies embracing sharing mobility (corporate or privately based) and don’t forget new players often heavily backed (Zoox) or leading forefront giants like Uber or Waymo.
Quite a crowded arena, specially if we consider that none of those players really own the whole stack of services that future business will require. Even more if we understand that final stage of this change will be the coming popular definition “Mobility as a Service” clearly described in this picture by Sampo Hietanen, pioneer entrepreneur running his Maas Global company.
Starting from here I outline some of the most important topics to be considered addressing this market based on assumptions that only few companies will have the resources (money, team, assets) to scale globally and we’ll probably see many providers acting locally followed by an increasing number of M&A.
Full mobility service business case is based on a tailored range of vehicles according to client’s preferences. Vehicles will feature new design (cars/van/minibus/light-freight) with multiple mobility targets. Vehicles will be initially electric and autonomous in a short timeline of period (local deployment according to regulations). In some regions it’s possible to include 2 wheels in the game.
Fleet Financing (leasing/rental) will be a core business because even if we think about the future.. we’ll still need someone to own and rent cars for mobility. At least until we’ll move in 3 dimensions instead of 2 and flying car will hit the road.. (actually the sky) of our cities.
Business operations: the business case includes a broad range of operations:
#CES2017 is the first show to look at to understand trends and new technologies. It’s true that Automotive uses the show to unveil prototypes and concepts often far away to market creating a sort of gap between future and reality. Referring to mobility industry the show has been a key place to talk about autonomous driving, connected cars and electric vehicles in recent years. This opening editions is showing both concrete products and services. The GONV summit gathered public institutions (mayor of Las Vegas,
State Governor) and private industries executives (LocalMotors, Lyft, Ehang, Hyperloop and many more) talking about new business cases and autonomous driving deployment.
The industry is clearly showing that this technology is coming to reality and to prove so a series of test drive locations have been set up for visitors. “Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is expected to put forth a highly autonomous driving demonstration in collaboration with its automobility partners. Microsoft is currently working on an autonomous driving project in partnership with NXP Semiconductors, IAV, Esri, Swiss Re, and Cubic Telecom” (cit). Similar approach comes from French industry representatives (Valeo,Keolys), as other relevant players like Nvidia (special Key note presentation), HERE (that just announced INTEL as new investor for the company) that will have big inside/outside locations to engage visitors to. High expectations comes from FCA that finally unveiled PORTAL the first fully electric car for millennians.. designed by millenians based on a new concept of family vehicle. It’s a prototype.. but seems that a market ready version will be ready in one year.
Even more rumours lead the Faraday Future unveiling. The official presentation of the first car comes after weeks of skeptics and executive leaving news providing the idea of a struggling company.. The level of presentation they just had proved that the company has strong commitment and even if financial problems are part of the challenge.. it doesn’t seem to be a close to end project. The car is quite innovative and sure will be one of the most interesting products to look after.
Ces2017 will open in the next days.. a lot to see and more to come, even from non exhibitors.. here comes that you can meet a #LucidMotors prototype next to parking spot for private presentation. Stay tuned.