A diversified mobility offering via a single application

Metro, bus, Tramway, Velib, Autolib, Uber, blablacar… For a decade, transportation offerings have been multiplying as well as diversifying. These days, it’s possible to take a VTC (chauffeured tour vehicle) on a daily basis, borrow an electric scooter to go to work or even share a private vehicle for long or short trips.

The face of urban mobility is changing and, as a result, choosing a transport method is becoming more and more complex for users. This upsurge has led to what is now known as MaaS (Mobility as a Service). Though still in test phase, the entire urban ecosystem has been disrupted, the first target being public transport users who can now take advantage of these complete mobility systems via a single app.


How does it work?

The goal is to simplify the lives of urban transportation users by providing them with a single subscription and platform for researching and booking routes.
Based on the user’s needs, smartphone apps can offer the fastest, cheapest or even most comfortable routes. These routes are a cross-referencing of multiple modes of transportation: public, private and shared.

For example, there’s Navigo, the card that provides access to buses, subways, urban railways and tramways throughout the Paris metro area.

Elisabeth Borne, Minister of Transport, launched a €15 million call for proposals in 2018 to encourage the emergence of new mobility services throughout France by 2021.


The RATP on the forefront of mobility

The RATP announced on Tuesday, February 19, 2019, the launch of its first Mobility as a Service (MaaS) app. It will be rolled out in the city of Annemasse (in the Auvergne-RhĂ´ne-Alpes region). According to Cyrille Giraudat, RATP’s director of marketing and digital development, the RATP already offers an application along the same lines, which they’re hoping to augment with dedicated functions and an offering of diverse modes of transportation.

TAC MobilitĂ©s (the public transportation network’s app for the city of Annemasse) offers ride-sharing, taxis and nearby parking. RATP Dev is also offering similar services for the city of Geneva. Transportation information and ticket purchasing is now possible through this application.


Upcoming changes

The application will focus on real-time route searches. TAC MobilitĂ©s doesn’t actually yet offer a complete MaaS experience to its users. Future changes will include payment options and more diverse offerings moving toward new modes of private transportation.

Like Citymapper or OUI.sncf, this type of application allows you to map itineraries, but also offers a ticketing solution. In the future, the RATP group is hoping to deploy this type of solution in each metro area where the group is present.


Why this infatuation for MaaS? What orginally appeared as an IoT innovation for centralizing and managing urban mobility routes is increasingly being seen as an ecological solution. Indeed, MaaS tends to favor public transport or shared rides (instead of everyone taking their own car) in order to reduce the l’impact of pollution on cities.


To read: And what if multi-modal mobility was accessible to all?