In the increasingly crowded world of on-demand transportation options and the apps designed to hail and use those options, a new player is launching in Seattle with the hope of someday becoming the world’s primary mobility services platform.
French vehicle manufacturer PSA Group (makers of Peugeot, Citroen, Opel, Vauxhall) announced Tuesday from the Museum of History and Industry that Seattle would be the first location for its Free2Move app.
According to a news release, the app connects car-sharing, ride-hailing, bike-sharing, public transit and other services on one platform. Users can compare the location, characteristics and operating costs of available transportation options, including offerings from Car2Go, Zipcar and soon TravelCar. Bike services including ofo, LimeBike and Spin are coming in the weeks ahead.
The service was introduced in Europe in 2016 and has grown quickly. It’s currently available in France, Spain, Germany, the United Kingdom, Italy, Austria and Sweden, with 400,000 customers and some 30 operators, PSA said. Portland is expected to be the next U.S. market after Seattle.
Automotive News reported that Free2Move charges companies to host their services on the app.
“The decision to launch a service that helps people move around in the most efficient way underscores our commitment to the future of Groupe PSA,” said Larry Dominique, the company’s North America president and CEO. “As mobility services evolve and innovate based on the way people think about and consume mobility, bringing Free2Move stateside provides us with a unique way to address consumer demands, as well as a flexible platform to roll out future products.”
— Free2Move (@Free2Move) October 4, 2017
Seattle startup Migo launched a similar app this summer to help connect people to on-demand transportation. Migo hooks into APIs from apps like Lyft to funnel available options into its own app, GeekWire previously reported. For apps that do not have APIs, Migo has developed its own virtualization platform that lets it re-represent external app data into Migo itself.
Car2Go parent Daimler also has a platform, called Moovel.