O Google Maps has been updated to include multimodal trips involving public transportation: for example, you will receive suggestions for going by train and taking a Uber to the destination, or to ride bicycle to the subway. This feature is being distributed to iPhone and Android users starting this Tuesday (27th).
It works like this: the user inserts a destiny in the search box, tap Routes and then on the public transportation. Google Maps will automatically suggest routes that mix trains, buses, subways and Uber (or bicycles) if they are more convenient; you will see the estimated travel time for each case.
In the Google example, a user wants to go from San Francisco to the city of Fremont, California. The app suggests a route that involves taking a bus, then a train, and finally an Uber or Lyft (competitor service in the USA). For the trip in reverse, there is a recommendation to cycle to the train station.
Google says that mixed routes with Uber are starting to appear today on Maps for Android and iOS in 30 countries. IPhone and iPad users will also see bicycle options; this will come to Android in the coming weeks.
Google and Citymapper show bicycle stations
The idea is to help solve the “first mile” or “last mile” problem, when you are far from a public transport station, or when the destination is far from the train or subway.
Google Maps also started to show the location of bicycle rental stations, including in Brazil – you will find points from Bike Itaú (Bike Sampa and Bike Rio) and CicloSampa (sponsored by Bradesco Seguros). However, the app’s routes do not take this into account: they assume that you have your own bike.
Competitor Citymapper has been offering integrated public transport and Uber / 99 routes for some time in São Paulo, the only Brazilian city present in the app. Elsewhere, it is also possible to get routes involving rented bikes and dockless scooters, without a rental station: it gathers data from Lime, Jump (from Uber) and others.
“We can compare everything: public transport, walking routes, taxis and all dockless services”, explains the company. This is available in some of the 30 cities in which Citymapper operates, such as Paris, Berlin, London and Washington DC. It would be something interesting to have on Google Maps.
Tecnocast 120 – Scooters and regulations
Micromobility is here to stay, but it has been causing some controversy. Rio de Janeiro, for example, almost approved a bill that required the driver to take a test of the DMV (!!!) to ride the scooters. In São Paulo, the city government collected street modals and collected very high fines from companies.
As devices become popular, the need to create some kind of standard becomes clear, even to increase the safety of users. But what would be the most sensible way? Play and come with us!