Transport Pods

As 70% of the world’s population is set to be urban by 2050, the stakes involved in solving the problems brought about by inner-city transportation are becoming increasingly high. Combined with the pace of development in network technology and Smart City projects, smart transport companies are now addressing all stages of the market – from personal sharing schemes to new methods of travelling that promote a different kind of society. These five exciting new developments have tackled the problems of parking, congestion and pollution head on, and give us an intriguing insight into the future of the transport industry.

1. Hyperloop

Straight out of a sci-fi film, the. Hyperloop is a tube-based transportation system designed to operate both within and between cities. Reducing friction to almost zero through. Magnetic levitation and propulsion, the system uses less energy and is more energy efficient than other high-speed modes of transportation. The concept was invented by Elon Musk and catalyzed in 2013 when he released. A white paper with basic designs which companies have since used to build on and improve. One of such developer, the Hyperloop One, aims to be operational by. 2021 and claims speeds of up to 670 mph.


If this technology becomes a reality, the Hyperloop could transform the transport industry by. Creating an alternative with reduced travel times, higher security and increased sustainability. What is also interesting is the open-source origin of Hyperloop. An increasingly popular model in the connectivity sphere, which means that. Retro-fitting Hyperloop into Smart Cities and internal connected systems is entirely plausible with the right level of interest.

2. Foldable Cars

Wacky but wonderful, CityTransformer’s foldable car is the ultimate solution for reducing traffic and pollution in cities. Driving like a car and also parking like a motorcycle. This electric car allows you to drive in designated narrow lanes and to park. Four vehicles in one car parking space, substantially increasing the number of parking places in cities. Not only does this save time and effort, this light-weight two seater also reduces pollution as the energy. Used finding a parking space is no longer wasted – when combined with a smart. Parking system this technology could reinvent the way we view inner city mobility. Equipped with smart and personalized interfaces, City. Transformer imagines that their cars would be part of a smart mobility sharing solution. In order to maximize potential, increase environmental impact, while creating the ultimate solution for today’s urban transportation.


3. Motosharing

Up and running in 10 Spanish cities, the scooter company Muving is already changing. The rules of the transport game and, from first hand experience, making it a whole lot more fun. The technology allows customers to unlock electric bikes from all over the city using the. Muving app and gives them instantaneous access to a fast, cheap mode of getting around. This ‘Uber’ methodology has resonated with consumers in recent years, removing the stress and waste involved. In driving by offering clients a no-strings-attached alternative which. Cuts out the cost of ownership – gasoline, parking, maintenance, tax. And replaces it with a sustainable, practical, and cost-effective alternative for both cities and users. And if all shared vehicle schemes are this fun to drive, then. Don’t see any reason why they won’t take off.


4. Local Motion

Addressing the problems of transport from a wider perspective, Local Motion has created a solution which allows. Their customers to unlock the full potential of a shared fleet. Creating a perfect balance between accessibility and security. Local Motion offers a system whereby your company badge can. Unlock a car, even in high-interference areas such as parking lots or urban streets. This allows cars to be shared without any bottlenecks. (such as picking up the wrong key), and therefore maximizes the use of the motor pool. The web-based management technology also allows a greater control over the fleet, allowing you to lock and unlock cars remotely, keep track of their location and handle maintenance easily – a crucial tool when moving into the world of fully integrated, city-wide sharing schemes.

5. Tesla’s Shared Fleet

Capitalizing on the fact that we only use our cars around 5% to 10% of the day, Tesla’s plan is to allow owners to sublet their cars to a company shared fleet which any individual could use. The plan would mean that instead of being left unused while you’re away on holiday, or even busy at work, your car can be rented by others to get around. Not only does this help offset the cost of ownership, it also reduces the number of cars needed for any given population by maximizing the capability of existing ones. As one of the earliest advocates of both automated and electric cars, Tesla’s shared vehicles are designed to be both sustainable and smart, allowing customers to summon a Tesla from anywhere and rest assured that their trip to work is building a cleaner, more innovative world.


A hundred years ago, Henry Ford revolutionized transport with the Model T, an innovation which gave average Americans a freedom they could never have imagined. Although different in their approaches, all five of these technologies represent a new idea of transport in which freedom (in this case, freedom to share), whether it be a car, a motorcycle or a train, is also key.

Ultimately, predicting the future of transport is impossible, but these companies shine a light on the changing nature of transport, in which the basic unit – ‘my car’ – has expanded to be more inclusive, to create a transport system which is efficient, integrated and sustainable, and to change the way we interact with a new digitized landscape.


Visiting Dubai can seem like stepping into the future. It’s home to man-made islands, the world’s first 3D printed office, and firefighters with jetpacks. Now the city wants residents to commute in sci-fi style, too – recently, the city unveiled and tested two autonomous transport pods, each designed to ferry up to six people.

At the end of February, Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) featured these two pods attached to each other other and running around one of the city’s main streets. Built in Italy by the U.S.-based company Next Future Transportation, the cube-shaped autonomous pods run on electricity, with a top speed of 80 k/h (roughly 50 mph).

These pods are part of the city’s 2030 Dubai Future Accelerators program, with a goal of making 25 percent of daily transportation fully automated. In order to do this, the RTA will spend $410,000 (1.5 million dirhams) for further research and development of the pods.


“The goal is to develop these two research vehicles,” Khaled al-Awadhi, Automated Collection Systems director at the RTA, told Reuters. “These tests are aimed at developing the performance of these vehicles.”

Transporting the Future

The plan, according to the RTA, will be to initially deploy the pods on pre-programmed routes. Eventually, they would become accessible using a mobile app for home pickups, like a ride-hailing service.


Next Future’s autonomous transport pods are just one of the latest transport technologies Dubai has been interested in. City officials have been working on a number of Hyperloop projects, including building a network that connects major cities.

Meanwhile, Dubai’s other autonomous transportation efforts include testing a vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) ride-hailing service, as well as a driverless taxi service on land powered by Tesla Model S and X vehicles. Dubai also funded a startup working to perfect a technology that would allow driverless cars to “communicate” with each other, and with smart road infrastructure.

Dubai RTA authorities have not given an exact date as to when Next’s autonomous cube pods will hit the roads. For now, officials have said they aim to iron out their plans for the pods by the end of 2018 or by early 2019.

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