Beam Trials Pedestrian Shield to Adjust e-Scooter Speeds for Road Surfaces

Beam Mobility is conducting an Australian-first trial of its Pedestrian Shield technology, which is powered by Drover AI’s PathPilot, to adjust the speed of e-scooters on different road surfaces.

Pedestrian Shield will be integrated into a number of Beam e-scooters in Adelaide, Canberra, Hobart, Launceston and Perth to trial the technology’s potential across Australia.

Drover AI’s Path Pilot can detect city infrastructure such as roads or footpaths in real-time using an onboard camera. With Pedestrian Shield, Beam’s e-scooters will accurately identify whether the vehicle is travelling on a pedestrian pavement, a street, or a bike lane, and will adjust the e-scooter according to the surface’s relevant restrictions.

Alex Nesic, Co-Founder at Drover AI said:

“Drover is excited to partner with Beam to introduce PathPilot to Australia as they endeavour to enhance the safety and intelligence of shared micromobility vehicles for all stakeholders. Micromobility offers many benefits in urban environments and Drover is thrilled to be able to contribute our technology to address the biggest regulatory concerns while also exploring the greater potential of AI-powered computer vision to contribute to the evolution of shared micromobility.”

Each of the six pilot cities has different state legislation for e-scooters, so Pedestrian Shield will allow each city to manage their own riding rules.

Beam Pedestrian Shield
The technology enables Beam’s e-scooters to adhere to restrictions such as reduced speed limits or no riding on pedestrian paths even in GPS-challenged areas
Beam Group’s Chief Technology Officer Deb Gangopadhyay, said:

“We’re pleased to be the exclusive partner of Drover AI in Australia & New Zealand, and to incorporate their industry-leading PathPilot technology into Beam’s Pedestrian Shield. The majority of pavement detection technology relies on positioning like GPS and detailed mapping of every road and pavement in a city. These solutions are not scalable and are unreliable due to the proximity of roads and pavements. In comparison, Pedestrian shield uses an on-board camera that detects when riders are riding on pavements instantly and accurately without the need for precise mapping and perfect positioning. We are excited to bring this technology to Australian roads first.”

Phase two of Beam’s Pedestrian Shield will launch in mid-2022 and will incorporate additional technology to enable the e-scooter to detect pedestrians on footpaths. The vehicles will then automatically slow down or stop to prevent collisions.

The data gathered in the trial cities will also power a nationwide roll-out of the technology later this year.

Beam’s General Manager (ANZ) Tom Cooper, said:

“This trial is the first of its kind in Australia, and one we hope will set a new standard of micromobility technology in the country. As micromobility becomes more commonplace in cities, we believe its usage will only continue to increase exponentially, with more citizens engaging on the streets and leaving their cars behind.”

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