Toyota Launches Multi-Modal App in Japan
Toyota Motor Corp. and several local partners have launched full-scale operation of the carmaker’s “my route” multi-modal smartphone app in the cities of Fukuoka and Kitakyushu.
The service allows users to search, coordinate, book and pay for multiple types of transportation via a single app. This includes buses, trains, bicycles, car-sharing, rental cars and taxis.
Toyota just concluded a one-year pilot program for the service in Fukuoka. The app was downloaded by 30,000 people, and 80% who participated in a survey said they were satisfied with the service.
The app is expected to be rolled out to other cities next year. In addition to the broader availability, Toyota says users will have more payment choices—including the carmaker’s digital wallet—and can access the service via four languages (Chinese, Japanese, Korean and English).
Toyota will provide users information about its rental and car-sharing services. Kyushu Railway and Nishi-Nippon Railroad will provide information about trains and buses, including local and inter-city transportation.
User choices range from single rides to full-day passes. Discounts also will be available for local shops and events.
Continental, an automotive supplier that has a deep engineering bench, is making a huge organizational change, one that Dr. Elmar Degenhart, chairman of the executive board, explains is necessary because, as he puts it, “The industry is changing at a high pace, so we have to change, too.”
Will self-driving, or autonomous, vehicles mark the end of steering wheels?