Autonomous Vehicles, New Mobility & the Built Environment

An Opportunity to Bridge the Rural Mobility Divide Through Autonomy

[Note, video updated on 9/14 to include images of Volvo Vera and Schaeffler Mover, as referenced below]

Drawing a parallel between the so-called broadband digital divide and mobility, Princeton Professor Dr. Alain Kornhauser suggests that, “Rural America has a substantial number of mobility challenged individuals,” in this 3rd part of an interview filmed at the AVS18 conference. Kornhauser believes that adding autonomy to the mix can help individuals who don’t have access to the same mobility options available in more dense urban areas.

The exciting thing about autonomy, particularly in combination with electrification, connectivity and sharing, is the idea that vehicles can be designed to move both people and goods. Separate announcements from Mercedes, Volvo and Schaeffler (“Schaeffler Mover“) about the use of a common “skateboard platform” for various autonomous vehicles, reinforces the notion that it will be possible to serve multiple use-cases with at least a common drive-system. Uber Eats provides another proof-point that it is possible to serve various transport and mobility needs with one vehicle.

Kornhauser suggests he and his Princeton colleagues will soon quantify the rural market for autonomous travel and that his gut feel is that this segment presents an enormous opportunity. Finally, Kornhauser shows off his latest fashion statement that was given to him by his fellow SmartDrivingCar podcaster and noted radio & TV journalist, Fred Fishkin.


Author Ken Pyle, Managing Editor

By Ken Pyle, Managing Editor

Ken Pyle is co-founder of Viodi, LLC and Managing Editor of the Viodi View, a publication focused on independent telcos’ efforts to offer video to their customers. He has edited and produced numerous multimedia projects for NTCA, US Telecom and Viodi. Pyle is the producer of Viodi’s Local Content Workshop, the Video Production Crash Course at NAB, as well as ViodiTV. He has been intimately involved in Viodi’s consulting projects and has created processes for clients to use for their PPV and VOD operations, as well authored reports on the independent telco market.

Linked In Profile

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: