Latest in Gear

Image credit:

Uber wants to make its own electric scooters

The project is being overseen by its Jump division, according to Bloomberg.
Nick Summers, @nisummers
August 31, 2018
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

ROBYN BECK via Getty Images

Uber is working on its own scooter to compete with Lime, Bird, Scoot and others, according to Bloomberg. The project is being overseen by Jump, a bike-sharing firm that Uber acquired in April for a reported $200 million. Little is known about the hardware, however, and how it might differentiate from existing push and electric scooters. The only tidbit, for now, is the location of Uber and Jump's engineers: San Francisco. Both companies are yet to confirm the story. In an interview with Bloomberg, though, Nick Foley, Jump's head of product, discussed the need for stronger scooters and hidden brake cables. Make of that what you will.

While the scooter is developed, Uber needs to work on courting city officials. Yesterday, San Francisco's Municipal Transportation Agency awarded scooter permits to two companies, Skip and Scoot. Bird, Lime and Spin, the first companies to drop a fleet of scooters in the city, were denied alongside Uber and Lyft. San Monica, however, has given Bird, Lime, Lyft and Jump a 16-month permit for a pilot program starting on September 17th. Through Jump, then, Uber has at least one market to test its own hardware in. The expansion could affect Uber's partnership with Lime, which allows users to rent green scooters through its ride-hailing app.

Electric scooter rentals have been hugely controversial. They're cheap to rent, reduce traditional traffic and help people complete "last mile" journeys. The dockless system, though, means they're regularly discarded on the sidewalk, blocking doorways and causing unnecessary congestion for pedestrians. Like dockless bikes, they're also easily damaged and a prime target for thieves who want a free ride or to sell them for quick cash. These issues are the reason why San Francisco and Santa Monica have introduced purpose-built regulation. Scooters may have a place in our cities, but they need to be implemented in a fair and thoughtful way.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

The 2020 Engadget Holiday Gift Guide

The 2020 Engadget Holiday Gift Guide

View
The gold, 8th-generation iPad returns to $299 at Amazon

The gold, 8th-generation iPad returns to $299 at Amazon

View
China's lunar sampling robot beams back its first full-color moon shots

China's lunar sampling robot beams back its first full-color moon shots

View
My return to ‘No Man’s Sky’ was a reminder of death and the void

My return to ‘No Man’s Sky’ was a reminder of death and the void

View
Singapore is the first country to approve the sale of lab-grown meat

Singapore is the first country to approve the sale of lab-grown meat

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr