The problem with a dis-aggregated transportation network and why one MaaS Platform is not the answer

Residents and visitors of cities, regions and even countries often face a dis-aggregated public transportation network (what we have alternatively called a fragmented transport landscape). Making it more difficult for them to move around without resorting to private transport modes that are typically higher carbon producing than their mass transit competitors.

So the idea of Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS), providing the means to plan, book and pay for transportation through a single platform and payment system , looks attractive. The Utopian ideal is that it will be possible in the future to do away with a personally-owned car at some point. And instead rely upon an ever-changing collection of mobility services made up on those private and public providers.

But unfortunately the reality of the situation with urban and suburban transport is that, when some public transport providers (e.g. rain, subway and buses) are merged together into a single MaaS platform and even when some private providers merge their services (e.g. taxi and eScooter, as in the case of Uber)… it is not technically or commercially realistic to link all these providers in the same proposition. Meaning that regular commuters or less regular tourists & visitors have no central account to view all their transportation activity.

Even if you had a Transport Authority that (through carrot, stick or Jedi mind trick) combined the top 10 or more providers of mobility in a region or country into an aggregated platform, you may still not have a significant number of the smaller (typically private) transport providers that make up the entire mobility ecosystem.

Which may actually be anti-competitive.

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