A research team of patent experts has discovered a recent patent application which reveals Uber's plan to use fully autonomous electric scooters (and now scooters) within cities.
Electric scooters are gaining popularity all over the world. I have one too: I was killing myself. Aside from safety in my opinion to be reviewed, they have the potential to help reduce traffic and emissions. And they can offer fast and affordable transportation options, particularly in densely populated urban areas.
Uber already provides rides via electric scooters and scooters, but has major problems with their large-scale use (and it's not the only company to have them).
After use, some users do not park their scooter or scooter properly, or lean it against the wall, or throw it a little in bulk.
Municipalities often place restrictions on where these scooters can be parked. Specific parking lots are still few.
Result? In many city centers that host fleets of scooters for ridesharing, it is chaos. Not to mention that these vehicles need to be recharged.
Uber may have solved: smart and autonomous electric scooters.
Uber's smart scooters will have multiple sensors: inertial measurement sensors (for example, accelerometers). Cameras (fisheye, infrared cameras, etc.). Beacon sensors (for example, Bluetooth low-energy sensors), GPS sensors, ultrasonic sensors, radio sensors (for example cellular, Wi-Fi, V2X, etc.) and so on and so forth.
With this nice little bit of sensors, these smart scooters will determine for themselves if they're not parked upright. And they will be able to "get up" automatically.
If they are not parked in the designated areas, they will locate the nearest parking area and automatically drive to the designated area.
When they need to recharge, the autonomous scooters will head out and automatically connect to the nearest charging station.
How do you imagine an urban center in the near future, between the comings and goings of pedestrians and that of "solitary" scooters?