One of the biggest problems facing e-scooter companies is the fact that users often decide to leave their rented scooters wherever they see fit, which can be quite annoying, especially when they end up clogging up a busy sidewalk or fill up an entire parking space.
To rectify this issue, Spin, a Ford-owned EV-scooter subsidiary has joined forces with Segway and a company called Tortoise to introduce a new ‘self-parking’ feature called Valet to the next-generation of its scooters that will allow them to remotely move between locations. The new technology will be added to Spin’s S-200 range of scooters.
While the scooters don’t possess full self-driving capabilities just yet, they will be able to be remotely moved around by a third party. This will be made possible through the use of GPS technology in combination with Spin S-200’s front and rear cameras, which allow the company to precisely locate each scooter. If needed, Tortoise’s team of remote operators can safely relocate the vehicle at a slow rate of speed.
The Spin Valet remote operations feature allows the company to reposition incorrectly parked scooters in a matter of seconds. This includes any scooters blocking sidewalks and pedestrian walkways, residential or business entrances, or public transportation stops.
Along with ensuring areas like the pedestrian walkways are clear of any stray scooters, there is another benefit to using the Valet system. If a scooter is parked at a destination where it’s unlikely to get another trip, remote operators could reposition the scooters to a location where there’s more demand.
Spin also intends to use the Valet system to help with recharging the scooters. Spin Valet will eventually the company to reposition the vehicles to a Spin Hub charging station where it will automatically be able to recharge, ensuring the next customer always has a full charge. This will be done remotely of course.
Spin will first test the system in 300 S-200 scooters starting in Boise, Idaho later this year before bringing them to other markets in Europe and North America throughout 2021.
Take a look at the new Valet systemin action below: