Journey-sharing app Jaunt has won a competition run by Ford that sought innovation in mobility apps.
Ford's Smart Mobility Game Challenge challenged developers to come up with gamified solutions to real-life problems in urban travel.
The Jaunt app helps travellers connect to each other, posting journeys that other can join. The app was developed by Ilya Zarembsky and Betsy Medvedovsky in New York. It offers an interactive map that lets users select 'jaunts' by transport mode, location and time, and discover more about their fellow travellers. The idea is that the app helps to ease congestion in urban areas and also allow social sharing of journeys.
“Game developers have an impressive track record in taking new ways of looking at real-world problems and coming up with fresh solutions, and that is exactly what we wanted to tap into for the Ford Smart Mobility Game Challenge,” says Ken Washington, vice president at Ford research and advanced engineering.
“Jaunt is the perfect example of just such a disruptive approach. Avoiding busy routes by connecting travellers to share trips could help to reduce congestion through ridesharing, and makes lives better by helping people to enjoy journeys more – whether travelling by car, bicycle, public transport, or on foot.”
Second prize in the challenge went to SelfieGo, an app that encourages commuters to travel by bicycle or on foot through a location-aware selfie-posting game.
Flux, a game that encourages drivers in traffic to move at a steady speed by projecting graphics onto the windscreen, won third prize. Developed in Germany, the game-makers say that the app helps traffic move more smoothly and prevents accidents.
Ford Smart Mobility Game Challenge is part of Ford's investment in connected car and autonomous vehicles technologies, as the company positions itself as a "mobility" company as well as a car manufacturer.