Ridesharing apps have continuously disrupted the auto industry since their emergence. Not only were they a blessing to commuters who were struggling to rely on unreliable bus services and faulty subway systems, they are now also the preferred option for car owners. According to an article on Fortune, over a quarter of adults in the US have sold or traded in their vehicles in the last twelve months, and 9% of that group turned to ride sharing apps as an alternative.
In retrospect, ridesharing can help spur a city’s economic growth just by improving traffic. Many working adults can relate to how billions of precious business hours have been lost to traffic congestion. In 2016 alone, traffic has cost US motorists around $300 billion dollars on wasted fuel and productivity, based on USA Today’s report. This can change with ridesharing.
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology recently published a study that suggested the potential of carpooling services to reduce the number of vehicles on the road without affecting travel time. Naturally, with fewer vehicles around, there will be less congestion. The director of the study, Daniela Rus, explained that a system like this could allow drivers to work shorter shifts while also creating less traffic and cleaner air. In a way, ride sharing also does the environment a huge favor, since passengers help reduce the carbon footprint left by driving alone. Fewer vehicles lead to less pollution, after all.
The increasing demand for ridesharing services only highlights the importance of implementing the Internet of Things (IoT) in business processes. For the uninitiated, the IoT simply refers to the connection of devices. Now, think about it: the concept of carpooling has been floating around for decades. It was only in recent years that companies leveraged smartphone data in a way that has made ridesharing an accessible and convenient option. In today’s digital landscape, data can be powerful. The information collected from IoT-enabled processes allows businesses to further study consumer and employee behavior. Armed with this knowledge, they are capable of finding real-time solutions to improve certain conditions.
Here’s a concrete example:
Thanks to the Internet of Things, RideConnect was able to pinpoint the cracks in the ridesharing industry and come up with better strategies. Our solution was simple: we eliminated the middle man between the drivers and the riders. Instead, RideConnect has created opportunities for drivers to have their own ridesharing business by giving them the platform to communicate with their riders. Of course, the company doesn’t plan on stopping there. With constant analysis being undertaken in terms of ridesharing data, we’ll be able to implement better programs.
The Internet of Things is also useful in improving travel efficiency. In the US, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has mandated the use of electronic logging devices (ELDs) for fleet businesses. Fleetmatics indicated that the implementation of the ELD devices will be no easy feat. It may take up to six months for operations to get adjusted to this new process. But looking at the bigger picture, ELDs will definitely eliminate a lot of problems. Drivers no longer need to input their logging hours manually, meaning they will have more time to do other tasks efficiently. And in essence, this is a perfect example of how the IoT makes life easier for everyone involved.