As technology continues to grow, more and more aspects of life are becoming interconnected. With a mobile device, an individual can access most services and goods they need, including transportation options. That means consumers and users are used to a more connected way of life, with the benefits of improved convenience and efficiency. One way that is happening is with the surge of smart mobility. This is a way that transportation methods are connected and improve the quality of life in urban areas. 

Read on to learn more about smart mobility and why it’s an important development in connectivity. 

What Is Smart Mobility? 

Smart mobility is an interconnected web of digital and physical transportation elements that create a more efficient way to get around. It includes key physical and digital elements to function: 

Physical components: Private vehicles, commercial vehicles, road infrastructure, trains, smart buses, smart traffic lights, CCTV cameras, road sensors, and more. 

Digital components: The connectivity, MaaS apps, fleet management software, and cloud-based infrastructure. 

Smart mobility has primarily arisen because of the growth of connectivity and the challenges with current mobility. Cities right now struggle with high levels of congestion, pollution, and a loss of overall efficiency. These challenges have driven companies and governments to look to a smarter solution.

There are opportunities for new developments in nearly every element of smart mobility as it evolves through continual innovation and emerging technologies.

Smart Mobility and the Internet of Things (IoT)

Smart mobility relies heavily on connectivity. Without it, the transportation network wouldn’t be “smart.” The connectivity happens because of the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT is the connected web of smart devices accessed through user interfaces. If it can connect to other devices, then the device is part of the network of IoT. 

The apps, infrastructure, software, and other important pieces of smart mobility are all connected via IoT. Even the road sensors and traffic lights can be a part of this smart network. The key for developing smart mobility is to utilize IoT software and devices effectively. 

Real World Integration Examples

These are some of the ways smart mobility is being used in urban areas: 

MaaS integration: Mobility as a Service allows users to select transportation options and order them right from their devices. This includes rideshare apps, scooter rentals, and peer-to-peer rentals. 

Traffic management: Sensors can gather data on current traffic levels. The real-time data can help cities clear up traffic jams, minimize congestion, and update traffic signals. 

Smart parking: Instead of circling the parking lot, people can be guided to available spots with smart technology. 

Integrated payment: Whether someone’s ordering a ride or hopping on a bus, they can do so from one app. It simplifies the fare systems and helps improve efficiency. 

Public transport enhancement: Smart mobility can also be used to make public transportation more accessible and effective. Some cities integrate transport information and payment with other apps to make everything more centralized and user-friendly. 

Data-driven urban planning: Smart mobility can provide a plethora of real data that cities can use as they design future infrastructure. That might include widening roads or building more accessible stations for public transport. 

Key Principles of Smart Mobility

Smart mobility is supported by five main tenets: 

Sustainability: One of the main missions is to move the transportation industry away from pollution-emitting vehicles and toward zero-emissions. It also provides a variety of transportation options for people to choose from. They’re no longer limited to traveling only with a private vehicle. With smart mobility, there’s an increase in ridesharing, carpooling, and public transportation use, helping improve sustainability. 

Efficiency: This network also improves travel efficiency. Individuals can get to their destinations on the fastest route, whatever that might look like. Smart mobility also reduces city congestion, which can help people get where they need to much more efficiently. 

Flexibility: Each user can choose routes and modes of transport that work for their particular needs and situation at the time. They can decide that a ridesharing app works best right then or rent an e-bike to get somewhere quickly during rush hour. Smart mobility empowers individuals to choose what works for them. 

Accessibility: With the increase of options, accessibility also improves. People are able to travel via methods that meet their individual needs and what’s most accessible for them. 

Integration: Smart mobility allows for the integration of multiple technologies and platforms. Multiple services can also all be combined into one app. For example, a user can view bus routes and schedules and order a ride in one centralized place. 

Benefits of Smart Mobility Systems

Increasing the prevalence of smart mobility systems helps create: 

Improved sustainability: Smart mobility helps cities move away from high levels of emissions that come from intense congestion and traffic. Instead, users are able to choose new modes of transportation, reducing the number of cars on the road. 

Reduced traffic fatalities: With fewer cars, that comes with important safety benefits. Specifically, the reduction of vehicle accidents, injuries, and fatalities. Smart mobility can also help reduce accidents with the increase of smart driving systems. These come with emergency braking and flashing lights when something is in a blind spot. 

Economic benefits: The cities and governments experience economic benefits. Car accidents cost $340 billion in 2019 and three percent of a country’s GDP per year. Congestion also costs $74.1 billion annually. By reducing the number of accidents and the amount of traffic, cities and countries can reap economic perks. 

Improved sociability and quality of life: With smart mobility, people are better able to stay connected in their communities. They’re able to reach the people they want to see and to meet new people. When people are restricted to their own personal vehicles, they don’t make community connections. Through a community-based smart mobility system, they do, improving the quality of life in the area. 

Taking A Role In Smart Cities

Conversations about smart mobility often lead to Smart Cities. Smart Cities are fully integrated and connected urban areas, and smart mobility serves as a valuable pillar for creating one. This transportation network connects all forms of mobility, lending to greater connectivity in the city. 

In addition, the data from smart mobility can help inform Smart Cities to optimize road safety and help manage conditions. Cities can use that to inform decisions and build infrastructure. For example, Columbus, Ohio has used smart mobility data to create safer streets. It has received a grant to become a Smart City and will help move in that direction with smart mobility. 

Enhancing Fleet Management

Commercial fleets will continue to need to use vehicles to transport goods and services. Still, managing a fleet is enhanced by embracing smart mobility, as it provides valuable information to improve route efficiency and safety. 

Fleet managers can use this data to ensure that drivers arrive with the efficiency expected by modern customers. They can also help keep their drivers and equipment safe by using smart data to monitor conditions and fatigue. 

Understanding the Future of Mobility

As technology continues its evolution, more cities will integrate and build new ways to travel and connect for improved human experience. The future will require even more levels of connectivity to support the growth of mobility and smart cities. The Internet of Things will only continue to expand. 

Reliable Connectivity Is Key

Overall, smart mobility provides valuable data to improve user experience and allows for more efficient and safe travel. Meanwhile, cities will reduce present congestion and dangers of travel, ultimately resulting in more connected urban areas.

As smart mobility relies heavily on connection, it’s important to have a reputable connectivity partner.

Simon IoT highly values the public safety, environmental initiatives, and efficient transportation of developing smart cities. Through dependable connectivity, transparent pricing, and expert knowledge, Simon IoT provides tailored plans to meet needs and prepare for future innovations. Talk to our experts about your smart city development.