Formally incorporated in February 2018, mobilityX is a seed-funded startup by SMRT, Singapore’s largest metro operator and multi-modal transportation service provider. It aims to provide integrated Mobility as a Service (MaaS) solutions in Singapore and around the region. Test-bedding in a local university campus and industrial parks since August 2017, it shares some of its insights and future plans.
Starting with the well-integrated Singapore transport system, mobilityX is looking to connect public transport, ride-hailing, car-sharing plus the first and last mile providers – the e-scooters and bicycles.
“In the old days, transport was typically infrastructure-centered such that you would go to the train station or bus stop for your ride. That’s really changed with the smartphone and data analytics. Mobility, on the other hand, is about putting the consumer at the center,” Colin Lim, mobilityX’s CEO, shares.
He adds, “Abundant transport options is important as we make travel choices based on what works for us, by time, cost, and what’s convenient. Even drivers, like myself, use other modes of transport. I send my kids to school every morning by car, but during the day when I have meetings, I’ll take the train or bus.”
Integrated payments for a better travel
Colin: “Having integrated payments is one way to improve the commuter experience. Payments on public transport tends to be via our transport cards, in the case of Singapore, our EZ link cards. When we use ride-hailing services, we use the apps or our credit cards. Then, when it comes to bike-sharing and e-scooter sharing companies, we have separate wallets. This is actually very inconvenient for the user.
"Mobility, on the other hand, is about putting the consumer at the center.”
Our goal is to put all of these different modes of transport onto a single digital platform. This doesn’t just simplify payments, but also help consumers better plan and book for their travel needs. The digital platform itself then becomes the vehicle for even more innovative services.”
Uncovering user behavior through data
“We learnt some interesting behaviors from the testbeds, such as the popularity of e-scooters over bicycles in Nanyang Technological University (NTU). And for good reason. NTU is rather hilly and it’s difficult to cycle. There’s also this interesting case, though in hindsight, would have been obvious. We saw a peak in the e-scooter usage after 10pm. When we looked deeper, it’s because NTU shuttlebuses slow down the services in the evening and at 10pm, stop altogether.
We leveraged something else to improve the commuter experience, and this is something Adyen does really well: data analytics. We had the opportunity to look at how usage across transport modes works. We didn’t just see shuttlebus or e-scooter usage in isolation. We looked at everything holistically by layering different sources of data.”