Iomob Blockchain-Enabled end-to-end Mobility Solutions for Smart Cities

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Today, an alarming number of citizens face growing mobility crisis as various transportation modes operate dividedly bearing mutual hostility.

The rise of ‘Mobility-as-a-Service’ A recent study estimates that by the middle of the 21 st century more than two-thirds of the world’s population will reside in heavily packed cities. Today, an alarming number of citizens face growing mobility crisis as various transportation modes operate dividedly bearing mutual hostility. The fragmented transportation system along with a lack of a comprehensive approach, has allowed myriads of companies offering ‘Mobility-as-a-Service’ (MaaS) to gain traction.

Recent estimates have pointed out that the MaaS market can reach up to $ 1 trillion by 2030. Insights into the global transportation system have presented businesses a golden opportunity to connect mobility providers and end-users to tailor make a unified mobility platform strengthened by a shared and decentralized blockchain infrastructure. Having observed this, a

company named ‘iomob’ embarked on a journey to establish an ‘internet of mobility’ solution becoming one of the 1 st blockchain services to support open mobility ecosystems in smart cities.

The company was founded by 3 Ph.D. experts skilled in mobility, software engineering and blockchain: Boyd Cohen, Josep Sanjuas and Victor Lopez. It ideated integrating transport services with blockchain commons on to a mobility universe erasing the need for intermediaries, legal agreements and propriety applications. The innovative solution combines open source and blockchain technology to create a global decentralized form of MaaS enabling any mobility service provider to be availed by end-users in an open, multimodal, decentralized and democratic platform. When utilizing the company’s blockchain protocol, the public transit systems, mobility providers such as ride-sharing, bike-sharing, e-scooter services and taxi companies as well as application facilitators can compete as well as collaborate efficiently.

The company’s basic infrastructure offers a level playing field where nobody can gain an upper hand and an unfavourable party can be replaced by a more efficient one. Boyd Cohen informs, “Any number of apps can be connected through our decentralized infrastructure, a connected universe where end-users can seamlessly toggle and choose between transportation options depending on circumstances”.

Customers can enjoy advantages such as economic benefits to all parties engaged to this collaboration, direct incentives for anyone contributing to the growth of the mobility ecosystem, requiring minimal platform fees and being cost-effective. Addressing the global transportation problem Iomob’s foundation is their protocol i.e. blockchain architecture connecting user-facing apps for the different mobility providers through regional mobility hubs. The spine of iomob’s protocol consists of providers who deliver their transport services, hubs i.e. computer infrastructure working towards higher discoverability and applications which are smartphone app interface for end-users to request services.

Iomob’s protocol ensures end-users a start-to-finish transportation solution through an intermodal commute experience. This protocol has abilities such as redirecting unmet demands to other mobility providers thus fixing problems of ‘too much demand’, enabling any mobility provider to extend their services publicly, including end-users payment in fiat money and

addressing gaps in traditional transport facilities (such as the problematic ‘first and last’ miles of lengthy commutes). Through enabling public and private intermodal routing, booking and payments with a full constellation of mobility services interconnected through their infrastructure, the company’s ecosystem functions as a global mobility marketplace when their clients don’t have to be proficient in the intricacies of the underlying technology.

Cohen says, “We are engaged in advanced discussions with multiple governments across Europe, APAC, and North America to integrate local transit service. Having plans to deploy our services, we therefore believe all crucial elements of a successful project are in place.” Although their services haven’t been deployed in any city, the company’s main focus, from 2019 to 2020,

is a full rollout in a handful of smart cities in continents such as Asia, North America and Europe. Iomob recently won the City of Tomorrow Challenge, sponsored by Ford Motor Company, to implement a pilot in Pittsburgh starting January 2019. It has also secured verbal and written commitments for pilots in a major US West Coast city and two cities in Southeast Asia.

The company’s main priorities are deploying their infrastructure on a public blockchain such as ‘Ethereum mainnet’, facilitating future-choices, navigating the tradeoffs between scalability and decentralization that blockchain technology offers and establishing a successful internet of mobility. The company will fund its own development and incentivize its growth through a token economy by minting a cryptographic token. Iomob also counts on two strong early APAC investments from the Fenbushi Capital group and Centrality, while it aims to close its next funding round by the end of January 2019.

Cohen says, “Iomob unlocks untapped value by enabling cooperation in a way that’s more practical, safer and cheaper than the status quo.” The company is aiming to be the definitive infrastructure facilitating mobility globally and seamlessly transform the current fragmented transportation landscape in to a platform for players to provide services, compete and collaborate—thus, adding to the value for smart cities.

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