In the meantime, Germany has also adapted the legal situation: For some weeks, e-scooters can be borrowed in many major cities in Germany as well. For the users this is very easy. Registration is via an app and the scooters do not need to be returned. Instead, they can simply be parked somewhere in the city. This comfort is associated with the companies, however, with considerable effort. Because every evening employees swarm out to collect the scooters and recharge the batteries. In the morning, the vehicles must then be distributed over the city again. This is not only stressful for the employees concerned, but also represents a not inconsiderable cost factor from an economic point of view.
The industry is generally very interested in the product
However, the Chinese company Segway-Ninebot has now presented a smart solution: The newly developed electric scooter called KickScooter T60 can return to the charging station independently if necessary. The control takes place from outside via a cloud. However, nothing changes in day-to-day business: users who have borrowed such an e-scooter must continue to drive themselves. The autonomous driving functions are only used when no persons are being transported. According to the company, many potential customers – including Uber and Lyft – have expressed their interest in the semi-autonomous scooter. This should not be surprising. Because, at least in theory, the technology ensures that the business for the lenders of e-scooters is even more lucrative.
Footpaths could be freed autonomously from e-scooters
First of all, however, significantly higher acquisition costs are recorded. Because a T60 kick scooter is to cost the equivalent of about $ 1,400 – and thus at least five times as much as the previously used models. For the new development, however, could solve another major problem in the industry. More and more cities are complaining that the e-scooters are not turned off properly after use. Partial footpaths are therefore completely blocked. In Milan, the companies were now even asked to remove their vehicles from the city. The new generation of scooters, on the other hand, could independently drive to previously selected locations at any time, significantly improving the relationship between pedestrians and e-scooter users. The partially autonomous KickScooter T60 is expected to be launched in the first quarter of next year.