Micromobility operator, Beam is now integrating its Pedestrian Shield path detection technology within its e-scooter fleet in Auckland, New Zealand.
The AI technology is powered by Drover AI’s PathPilot product. It can detect whether an e-scooter is travelling on a road, footpath or cycle lane to enable customised enforcement and assist policy-makers in urban planning.
An initial 200 e-scooters will now be fitted with the technology in Auckland, following the conclusion of a 2022 pilot in Australia.
“We are thrilled to support Beam with the introduction of our cutting-edge technology to the streets of New Zealand, with the objective of ensuring smarter, safer and more organised shared micromobility for riders and other right-of-way users alike.
“Beam has done a tremendous job growing the popularity of shared scooters in the region and Drover is keen to help them continue to improve the experience.”
In the initial phase of deployment, the units will detect surface areas during e-scooter operation. This will enable the technology to collect information about Auckland’s specific roads and paths and adapt its knowledge of the city based on experience.
Riders using e-scooters equipped with Pedestrian Shield will be alerted to any surface changes by a range of audible sounds.
In the second phase, which is scheduled for later this year, the e-scooters will also be able to cap riders at different maximum speeds depending on surface. For example, a rider will be allowed to travel faster when riding on a bike path compared to a footpath.
“This is a big step forward for the shared micromobility industry in the region, allowing cities better understanding and control of how Beam’s e-scooter riders are using the city’s road infrastructure.
“As cities adapt quickly to more forms of micromobility as a mode of transportation, we are committed to investing in technology to ensure Beam’s vehicles are best-equipped to serve both riders and the wider community.
“The integration of Pedestrian Shield will happen in gradual stages, to ensure the highest degree of accuracy in surface detection for the safety of Auckland’s road users. With Beam’s current permit in Auckland running to 2024, this gives us an opportunity to increase our investment in e-scooter technology across the city, including even more industry-first features which we look forward to introducing to Auckland first in the coming months.”
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