Of all the mobility news in 2019, nothing has dominated the headlines more than electric scooters. What do some of the biggest stories last year in the space say about the future of the micro-mobility devices? Ride takes a quick look at some of the biggest trends in the space last year and how they could potentially shape the world of e-scooters in 2020 and beyond.
- A number of e-scooter trends that gained traction in 2019 are poised to have an even bigger impact in the space in 2020.
- Tighter regulations and safety concerns will continue to play a significant role in the world of electric scooters.
- Autonomous tech and personal ownership will become major trends in the electric-scooter space in 2020.
The popularity of electric scooters will shape urban mobility in a number of ways in 2020. (Photo: Marcus Amick/Ride)
Last year was filled with a number of significant trends in the evolving landscape of urban mobility, especially in the world of e-scooters.
Ride takes a look at five of the most news worthy shifts in the space, for 2019, which are poised to have a significant impact on the micro-mobility devices as we shift into 2020.
1. More options
For the past couple of years, Lift and Bird have pretty much dominated the e-scooter rental service market. But a number of new competitors that gained traction in 2019 will broaden consumer offerings in the space in 2020. More consolidations in the sector and more aggressive moves by companies like Uber to ramp up their e-scooter service Jump will create more options in the space as well.
2. Tighter restrictions
Last year a number of cities around the world deciding to ban electric scooters due to growing safety concerns over the micro-mobility devices. From San Diego to Singapore, more municipalities have been putting tighter restrictions on the use of e-scooters in urban areas, with some areas deciding to simply ban the devices, all together. Those restrictions will only get tighter in 2020, prompting more and stiffer fines for those whom are inclined to ignore the laws.
Safety concerns will drive some of the biggest trends in the world of e-scooters in 2020. (Photo: Marcus Amick/Ride)
3. Finding a safe lane
With a growing number of municipalities pushing to ban e-scooters on sidewalks, look for the availability of more bike lanes in cities. Urban mobility initiatives like the one being proposed in Atlanta, which includes creating what’s known as Light Individual Transportation (LIT) Lanes to help accommodate electric scooters, is sure to prompt other cities to explore and launch similar plans in 2020.
4. Autonomous capabilities
Most of the advances in the world of e-scooters in 2019 were centered around safety, spanning improved braking systems to longer range. But one of the most interesting trends in the space, announced last year, was new e-scooter technology introduced by the California-based start-up company, Tortoise, that enables the devices to be controlled remotely. Expect that tech to gain a lot more traction in 2020.
5. Seeking a more personal touch
To date, a major portion of the market for e-scooters has been centered around shared services. But 2019 showed that there is a growing interest in personal e-scooters offered by companies like Boosted, Segway and Unagi, to name a few. Look for that list to expand even more in 2020, along with the number of luxury features and foldable options in the space, for those looking to buy an electric scooter.