Scooters that park or drive themselves on the sidewalk to meet a customer is a scene that the residents of Boise, Idaho, will be witness to in the coming months. Scooter operator Spin will test this new remote guidance system for its scooters with a fleet of new 3-wheeled vehicles.
Spin, a subsidiary of Ford, has joined forces with Segway to build a new scooter and with the Tortoise company to develop its remote control system. The idea is to ensure that scooters no longer clutter sidewalks and no longer hinder pedestrians, especially the elderly or disabled. In Boise, a first fleet of 300 Spin S-200 scooters is to be deployed in the spring.
In fact, everything will take place remotely, where a team of Tortoise operators can at any time geolocate the scooters and then move them by "remote control" at low speed (less than 5km/h) to reposition them properly, either in a nearby dedicated station or in an orderly row on the sidewalk. The aim is to be able to free up access in public space for the disabled, entrances to residences and stores or public transport stops. On site, passers-by will be able to watch scooters 'park by themselves.'
The next step would be to 'automatically drive' the scooter on demand to a customer. This will happen in the same way, with a person remotely piloting the scooter to the meeting point.
Note that with its three wheels, the Spin S-200 is also much more stable and therefore safer than a conventional electric scooter.
After an initial test period in the capital of Idaho, the Spin S-200 should be deployed throughout the United States this year, but also in certain European cities in Germany and the United Kingdom, where the operator is already present.
Check out the Spin S-200 in this video: youtu.be/v34YCW9bxzA