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Today, getting from point A to point B in the United States is easier than anyone ever thought possible. The advent of the personal automobile removed most barriers to mobility, creating a situation where the majority of drivers commute in 5-passenger vehicles with only a single occupant. The fragmentation within the transportation industry has led to inefficiency and wasted resources: congestion in the top 15 urban areas alone results in 1.6B gallons of wasted fuel and 59% of the $101B in congestion costs incurred nationally each year. In addition to high social costs like pollution and congestion, this method of transportation has a demonstrable impact on driver’s pocketbooks: individual vehicle ownership expenses top $9K a year. This is in addition to costs associated with congestion, including wasted fuel and lost productivity, which tops $1,100 per commuter annually.
As drivers seek alternative forms of transportation they are faced with another burden: an ever-growing list of applications and websites, each providing information on a single mode of transportation. In reality, these “solutions” are only adding more complexity to the problem and further fragmenting the market by overwhelming consumers with additional information. This process of constant search and comparison oftentimes leads to a state of paralysis, where individuals opt to drive rather than find their best alternative ride option.
Ridescout is a mobile application that provides riders with information on all ride options around them, becoming the Kayak of ground transportation. The Ridescout aggregation system searches nearby buses, subways, taxis, carsharing, and carpooling programs in real time and displays all relevant ride options on one simple interface. This allows the user to choose the most convenient ride option for them given their specific circumstance and context. Ridescout is the only application that aggregates all ride options and is 100% supplier agnostic. With the integration of social networks, users can easily locate and offer/accept rides from their friends on Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.