Micromobility explores the disruption to urban transport that comes from new electric, lightweight utility vehicles. Using the history of computing as a framework, we unpack how e-bikes, scooters and more will change how people get around cities.
Benedict Evans and Horace Dediu discuss Micromobility
This week, we release the first of the many incredible sessions from the 2021 Micromobility World conference, wherein Benedict Evans and Horace Dediu discussed the disruptive potential of micromobility. It was an incredible conversation between two people who clearly have a lot of time and are excited by each others ideas. We hope you enjoy it!
Specifically they dig into:
- Why Benedicts background as a historian makes him a great analyst.
- The micromobiltiy disruption thesis - low end, the asymmetric nature of unbundling trips (market for vehicles vs. market for miles), the role of fun/enjoyment, speed of interaction
- Why micromobility is more interesting that autonomy
- The role of Marchetti’s constant in transport, and why that matters for micrombility’s unique capabilities
- What the rise of elevators can teach us about new urban transport technologies
- What the platform game will look like in this space.
- What the impact of COVID has been on how we think about transport
- How micromobility will enable Amazon logistics API to fulfil deliveries
- Tackling ‘Should the thing move, or the person move?’, and why that matters to micromobility.
- Why the low cost of micromobility platforms will allow real world marketing kickbacks similar to how ‘surfing’ on the internet works now - ’take me somewhere interesting’
- Why the rise of new forms of transport like automobiles enabled new crimes and the rise of Bonnie and Clyde
- Why cities will likely eventually move towards dynamic road pricing
If you prefer video, check out the video of it on the Micromobility Industries Youtube page here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1QAedjTudoQ
Apple C(ar)mputer - why Apple should be thinking micromobility, not automobility
On this episode, Horace joins Oliver on the show to talk about what an entry by Apple into the mobility market would look like, and why a car is perhaps the wrong form factor to be looking at. They talk through the growth prospects for micromobility, and why Apple’s entry into the market would be a meaningful contribution to the world of mobility.
This is on the back of Horace’s post ‘Apple Computer’ published on the Micromobility Industries blog recently. Check it out here: https://micromobility.io/blog/2021/1/11/apple-computer
Specifically they dig into:
- The parts of the upcoming Micromobility World conference that Horace is most excited about
- The size of the car market vs the micromobility market as it currently stands
- Where the margins lie
- Why Apple has typically entered into industries that are still ‘embryonic’
- What a meaningful contribution could look like and what technologies would materially affect the user experience
- The constraints of infrastructure on useability and the ‘feel’ of a vehicle
- How computation becomes more personal over time, and why that will apply to vehicles too
- The revisit Microsoft’s decision in the 90’s to get into the lounge, and why that was the wrong question.
- Horace coins the term ‘smartphone-y’
Thanks again to the sponsors of this episode, Christensen Group.
Christensen Group, a lead player in the micromobility insurance category. As the micromobility space continues to grow around the world with a diverse spectrum of business models, Christensen Group continues to be a leader in the space servicing: e-scooter, moped, motorcycle, e-bike sharing operations along with: subscription & private based programs, manufacturers, AI technology providers and more. They will have a virtual booth at this year’s Micromobility World event on January 27-29. They invite you to stop by and have a chat with them about safety, fundraising, regulatory requirements, and trends in the risk and insurance marketplace, or whatever else is on your mind. They’re also going to have folks from Zagster, ZipCar, Ford Mobility, and others dropping by their booth to discuss litigation trends, regulatory missteps, fundraising and start-up strategies, and more.
The world's largest micromobility market with Alan Jiang, founder of Beam
Fun fact: Seoul, South Korea is the largest market for shared scooters globally, and Beam is one of the largest players there.
This week, Oliver interviews Alan Jiang, founder of Beam, the largest shared Micromobility operator in Asia-Pacific. Asia is one of the hotspots for micromobility given its home to the majority of the world’s population experiencing the growth, density and ensuing urban congestion where micromobility really thrives. We’re very excited to cover more of it in 2021. Alan has a great view over the market and it's nuances.
Speciflcally they dig into:
- Alan’s background at Uber and then Ofo
- how he’s seeing the market develop in Asia and Australasia
- Seoul - it’s the worlds biggest scooter market, and you're one of the largest players. What are the benefits to scale and what are they seeing?
- Beam’s unique commodity hardware strategy
- fundraising and what he’s seen change in the conversations over the last 12-24 months
- how Alan think of the ridehailing players, and whether Grab/Go-Jek/Didi are going to go hard into micromobility
Micromobility Supply Chains, Distribution and Maintenance with Puneeth Meruva of Trucks VC
Today on the show, Oliver interviews Puneeth Meruva, Associate at Trucks VC about their latest report: The Three Axes of Micromobility: Supply Chains, Distribution and Maintenance about the often unseen world of getting Micromobility into the hands of consumers. This is a topic that hasn’t received much coverage to date, so it was a fascinating conversation fully of nitty-gritty and relatively technical details about the opportunities for development and investment in the micromobility ecosystem.
Specifically they dig into:
- a recap of Trucks VC, their thesis and other portfolio companies in the Micromobility space
- Puneeths background and how he got there
- what the research was about, and why Trucks undertook it
- key findings in the fields of components, distribution, maintenance etc
- Whether timelines for new product development are getting shorter vs longer and why
- Who the interesting businesses are in the distribution and maintenance space
- future opportunities in design and tech both in vehicles and business models (including a reference to www.nimbus.green - one of the companies Oliver is most excited about at the moment)
- A discussion about vehicle platforms, and whether Puneeth agree’s with Horace’s thesis that these vehicles will become computing platforms.
The report itself can be found here [https://www.trucks.vc/blog/the-three-axes-of-micromobility-supply-chains-distribution-and-maintenance]
Aiding the micromobility buyers journey - the cofounders of Ridepanda
This week Oliver interviews Chinmay Malaviya and Charlie Depman, cofounders of Ridepanda, about their efforts to build a better customer journey for purchasing owned micromobility. The platform is relatively new, but it hits on a very relevant need. Thanks to Reilly Brennan from Trucks VC for putting us onto them.
Specifically we dig into:
- Their backgrounds at Bird, Scoot and Lime and how that led them to starting this business.
- The core customer needs that they’re trying to solve
- The importance of trusted reviews and reliable servicing for customers
- What matters to customers, and why brand is far further down the list than expected
- What early traction they’re seeing
- How COVID 19 has impacted the buyers guide
- Their fundraising journey and what they’re seeing for Micromobility related startups in general.
This week, Horace joins Oliver for the podcasts 100th episode, and they run through what’s happened in the last 2 and a half years, and wonder aloud what will happen in the next two.
Specifically they dig into:
- Horace’s early theses
- The emergence of scooters and why they proved to be so challenging to Horace’s ideas about what vehicles would be most popular
- The biggest mistake that Horace thinks he made in his early theories
- What Oliver considers the biggest barriers, and where he over and underestimated progress over the last 2 years
- Where they expect to see development
- The pace of adoption, and why patience is needed.
Customer ReviewsSee All
I was a Math PhD student with no purpose
I slaved on my Real Analysis homework assignments every day, staring into the dark abyss that is my home chalkboard—driving the struggle bus every day into oblivion.
Then I discovered the Micromobility movement.
Now...now...I have hope for mankind.
I jest. But for real, this podcast is fire.
Great guests, not a well balanced pod
Has a ton of potential but has the standard SF agenda where they think their pre determined outcome is bound to happen instead of looking at market forces.
Good guests but needs some more researching and real world experience from the hosts
Love subject matter;can’t stand dynamics
I love the coverage of Micromobility subject matter but the reoccurring snobbery of Horace- who takes every opportunity to endlessly talk and barely acknowledge his cohost- is draining to endure. I wish their episodes with one another were truly more of a dialogue instead of Horaces contentious and condescending monologues. Interviews are more solid.