The Daily Press took a look at the dozen companies asking to work with the City for its shared-mobility pilot program. Most companies offered similar pricing and standard features, including a mobile platform, GPS tracking and an in-app education.

For a full look at the applications, you can visit smgov.net/Departments/PCD/Transportation/Shared-Mobility-Services

You can email the City your thoughts through Friday afternoon at 2 p.m.: kyle.kozar@smgov.net

Here’s a look at some of the unique offerings and innovative ideas different companies suggested:


Lyft:

If a rider picks up or drops a scooter near a Big Blue Bus hub or Metro Expo Line stop,  they could receive a discount on their ride. Lyft said they would also like to integrate TAP cards into the usage.

Rather than relying on a contract workforce, the company said it would hire a maintenance team to reposition scooters and bikes during the day and charge them overnight at a facility.

The company offered to immediately geofence the Strand to keep scooters off the beach bike path.

 

Lime:

Lime proposed to launch the pilot with 1,000 electric scooters and 250 e-assist bikes, with a maximum fleet of 2,500 scooters in the city.

“During operational hours we feature a fleet of six vehicles sweeping the City for errant bikes and scooters which may have been misparked or misplaced,” the application said.

Lime’s developed a new sensor to tell the company when a scooter has toppled over, so they can send an operations person to stand it back up. While many scooter companies ask users to take a photo at the end of their ride, Lime has used the pictures to create an interactive game in the app called “parked or not” to educate riders.

 

JUMP:

Jump says it’s integration with Uber in San Francisco resulted in fewer car trips through the app while usage rose 15 percent. The company offered to share scooter, bike and Uber rideshare data with the city. The Uber app is already available in 25 languages.

In their application, Jump promised to track bad behavior by scooter and bike users and follow up with education, financial penalties and account suspensions.  In addition, users might receive trip credit for dropping a scooter in the appropriate area.

 

Bird:

Bird’s application revealed the company has been operating about 1,500 scooters in Santa Monica already. The company has been working with other cities to create parking areas.

“So long as these parking spaces – often the size of one car parking space – are on every block, it allows us to continue to provide ubiquitous access to Birds in a way that remains orderly in high-traffic areas.”

Bird’s application included a reference to geofencing in addressing parking, but did not mention prohibiting rides in off limits areas like parks.

 

Razor:

Scooters feature air-filled front tires and wider bases. The company proposed a team of full and part-time workers to maintain the fleet and charge overnight, rather than contractors.

The company said it could provide audio and visual notifications on its scooters in crowded areas to tell the rider to slow down or find another route. It also proposed geofencing to regulate parking and restrict operations.

Razor also offered to provide non-motorized scooters to the Boys and Girls Club of Santa Monica to celebrate their launch.


Scoot Networks

San Francisco-based Scoot launched its first fleet of 100 percent electric vehicles in 2012 with mopeds, four wheelers, bikes and scooters.

Scoot electric vehicles would come with locks on both bikes and scooters. The company said tethering the devices to infrastructure reduces trip and fall accidents and reduce theft.  Scoot said their full-time fleet operators would monitor both vehicles and riders in the field to ensure safety.

“Our vehicles will have unique identification numbers prominently displayed on both sides of the vehicle so citizens can photograph and report unsafe drivers,” the application said.


Spin

Spin’s application emphasized their willingness to partner with the city as collaborators to work out kinks. Users keep each other accountable by giving a “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” on the parking placement of a scooter they pick up.

The company relies primarily on a contract workforce to charge scooters overnight and perform basic repairs.


Cloud:

Cloud’s CEO and Founder Gray Bright actually sits on the board of the Santa Monica Pier Corporation.

The company proposed installing beacons at certified drop-off locations to get a better sense of where and how their devices are parked. They also said they were experimenting with a function that would turn off the motor in geo-fenced zones, such as the beach path, to transform it into a foot-powered scooter in certain zones.


Hopr:

The CEO of Hopr said he is working closely with a helmet company to design a shareable helmet that will be attached to the devices so users don’t have to bring their own. The system would integrate cable locks and dockless parking hubs and racks, as well as geofenced parking zones and user alerts when they are not in a permitted area. The scooters use battery packs, which are swapped out, rather than a plug-in charge.

Hopr uses a part-time and full-time workforce, rather than contract employees to maintain their fleets.

 

Skip

Skip employees a “ranger team” to find missing scooters, rebalance the fleet throughout a city and remove them from forbidden areas.  They began testing electronic “tip over” detection in May in Washington, D.C. and found they can fix most tip-overs within 30 minutes.

Their website and app is available in English, Chinese and Spanish. They offered to give a free ride to customers who can demonstrate ten perfect parks in a row as an incentive to leave the vehicles responsibly.

 

Drop:

The company has already partnered with more than a dozen cities, mostly in Canada, for bike share programs. Drop has set up hubs called “havens” in other cities to leave bikes and scooters, which are required to be locked to a rack.

They said they make sure all efforts to build up their fleet are sustainable.

“We do not believe in creating a cash-burning environment to acquire more users in order to achieve the single objective of outcompeting another operator in a market.”


Gotcha:

Gotcha is looking at adding a 3-wheel scooter to its fleet of 2-wheelers to add stability and keep the device upright when not in use. The company did not recommend geo-fencing as a part of the pilot unless “virtual hubs and racks are unsuccessful.”

“Gotcha will log mis-parked scooters and contact the last customer to remind them of proper parking,” the application said. “Third offenses will result in a suspension of membership. Membership may be revoked entirely after five offenses”

The company has established a strategic partnership with a helmet company to provide free helmets at local retailers in Santa Monica, so they can be picked up the same day riders want to use a scooter.

Kate Cagle

Senior reporter for the Santa Monica Daily Press