In future, highQ will bundle all app developments related to the mobility platform under the brand name “mytraQ”. As pioneers of multimodal mobility, highQ developed a first mytraQ app (free of charge and completely free of license fees) as early as 2014. The app has been available in app stores ever since.
mytraQ enables you to flexibly combine different modes of transport. In the future, depending on the traffic and environmental situation, additional transport services such as eScooters, car sharing and carpooling options will be combined and networked. mytraQ provides users with real-time routing recommendations. At the same time, they can also pay for their tickets online, for example when switching from private cars to public transport. This is practical for the user and even better for the public transport operator, because in addition to payment, it also enables ticket control. And anyone who has mytraQ on their smartphone is offered the optimal route to their destination – preferably by bus or train.
Motivation for environmentally friendly mobility
And how can road users be motivated to adopt environmentally friendly mobility behaviour? How can they be persuaded to leave their own car at home more often and to travel multimodally, e.g. by public transport or car and bike sharing? Research results show: If an appropriate traffic supply is available in a conurbation, individual mobility behaviour in terms of traffic mode, route and time can be steered in the desired direction by means of ideal, monetary and virtual incentives. In this way, time mile incentives help to equalize local traffic flows and reduce the CO2 footprint of a municipality and/or a company. In practice, incentives can be implemented in the form of a regionally effective bonus system that is integrated into the mobility app of the road user. Within the mytraQ app, we now also offer solutions for the optimisation of corporate mobility, the professional control of eTickets (with blocking lists and action list connection) and, of course, continuing to provide mobility for the common good for everyone. mytraQ - the name for mobility apps of highQ computer solutions.
We currently offer three versions of the mytraQ app family:
mytraQ enables the flexible combination of different modes of transport. In the future, depending on the traffic and environmental situation, additional transport services such as eScooters, car sharing and carpooling options will be combined and networked.
Published by INRIX 2017, the “Traffic Scorecard” demonstrates the devastating effects of traffic jams in German cities. Motorists spend an average of 30 hours per year in traffic jams, while the direct and indirect costs caused by queues of cars amount to 80 billion euros. Municipalities and organisations in conurbations are struggling with increasing traffic volumes, before and during peak hours - traffic jams, parking problems and environmental pollution are the result.
However, experience has shown that companies sometimes cause these traffic jams themselves. Through conventional working time models and rigid working hours, they generate a high volume of traffic on the often limited approach roads, especially during rush hours – resulting in the collapse of the infrastructure. Employees arrive at work already stressed out and are less productive, while companies lose their attractiveness for skilled workers and investors.
highQ offers the solution in the form of a holistic mobility analysis and consultation service tailored to the individual needs of the company. The special feature, however, is the supplementary commuter mobility app, which optimally supports the mobility concept developed by the company. The app simplifies daily commuting by intelligently disentangling and possibly diverting traffic flows using software-based recommendations, thereby offering seamless connections from the front door to the workplace – in a multimodal and resource-saving manner.
Each employee is shown routes to work that are tailored to his or her needs, and can choose between them according to personal preferences – short travel time, low costs, own car, etc. Tickets for public transport and reservations for car and bike-sharing offers can be booked directly via the app. What’s more, employees can join together as a closed user group through a communication component to share their daily commute to work (carpooling).
Additional motivation to change their own travel behaviour is provided by the app’s integrated “time miles” bonus system. If commuters are willing to comply with the proposed mobility strategies (e.g. commuting outside rush hours, using an alternative route) and commute in a resource-saving way (carpooling, using public transport/bicycle/walking), they can earn time miles. These bonus points can subsequently be exchanged for rewards. The gamification approach also generates enthusiasm, as users can compare notes with each other in a playful way. Who’s collected the most time miles and received extra rewards? Who is “Time Miler of the Month”?
Companies benefit from the use of the commuter mobility app in many ways. For one thing, the work-life balance of their employees is significantly improved by a more flexible, self-determined and faster commute to work. The gamification approach transforms commuting, which is characterised by traffic jams and stress, into a fun experience by using the app, and employees can even win bonuses. Strain on the existing infrastructure of the companies is reduced, carpooling and public transport subsidies alleviate parking problems and the result is a reduction in costs.
Changing mobility behaviour and the positive effects on the environment can be visualised by reports from the app. This enables the respective company to communicate its sustainability commitment to the public. As a result, the company's image is enhanced and it becomes a more attractive proposition for recruiting highly qualified personnel. Moreover, communities benefit from the sustainable effects on traffic and reduced levels of noise and air pollution. Changes in mobility behaviour will thus have a lasting effect on protecting the environment.
The development of the mytraQ app is being supported under the SB:Digital research project as part of the “Future of Work” programme (https://sbdigital.infai.org/projekt/).
Transport companies and transport associations benefit from this multimodal mobility assistant. mytraQ is not only suitable for buying tickets via smartphone, but can also be used for ticket control. All that is required is an RFID-capable smartphone – there is no need to invest in expensive control devices.
Even the last mile in the taxi is settled immediately and without complications with the transport companies via the mytraQ check-in/check-out procedure.
mytraQ for the last mile by taxi: If a customer chooses to finish his or her journey by taxi, the last mile is billed easily and comprehensibly. The check-in/check-out process is completed on the taxi driver’s smartphone using an NFC card. With mytraQ, the automatic billing between the taxi company and the transport association or transport company is always correct and transparent. Win-Win-Win: for customers, taxi companies and the transport association.
Combining the functionalities of mytraQ with the app for incentive-based “time miles” travel management comes very close to being a universal mobility app. This networking of private motorised transport and public transport is lowering the entry barriers to public transport use.
How can transport users be motivated to adopt environmentally friendly mobility behaviour? How can they be persuaded to leave their cars at home more often and to make multimodal journeys, for instance by means of public transport or car and bike sharing? Research results are providing some valuable insights. If an appropriate transportation system is available in a conurbation, individual mobility behaviour can be steered in the desired direction in terms of transport mode, route and time by means of non-material, monetary and virtual incentives.
In this way, schemes like “time miles” incentives help to untangle local traffic flows and reduce the carbon footprint of a municipality and/or company. In practice, incentives can be implemented in the form of a regionally applicable bonus system that is integrated into the transport user’s mobility app.
In 2015, the Verkéiersverbond Luxembourg received several awards for its mytraQ variant mTicket App. In February, it won the Best m-Government Service Award in Dubai and in May the Best Practice Award Urban Telematics in Berlin.
The innovative mobile solution enables paperless and forgery-proof ticketing via smartphone. Luxembourg is an example of a region in which there is a major daily flow of cross-border commuters. A shift from private transport to public local, regional and long-distance transport can only be achieved with easy-to-use ticketing offers for occasional travellers. A second app provides passengers with comprehensive information on the entire range of available mobility services, while the mTicket app makes access to mobility much easier.
Thomas Hornig, Managing Partner of highQ GmbH, is delighted about the awards: “Winning these two prizes shows that we have developed a truly innovative solution.” Gilles Dostert, Director General of Verkéiersverbond Luxembourg, added: “We want to offer a well-thought-out public solution in Luxembourg as an alternative to private motorised transport. This makes smooth cooperation between different transport service providers indispensable. We have achieved this through our offer and also through the tariff union. With the mTicket app, we aim to convince even more people of the simplicity of using public transport.”
mTicket is a variant of highQ's multimodal mobility assistant mytraQ, which was developed in cooperation with the Karlsruhe-based software company INIT AG.
“We are proud of the new, jointly developed Sylt shuttle booking system and, at the same time, we can look back on a truly long-standing collaboration since 2001. Thanks to the company’s expertise, highQ has been able to keep our system up to date over the past two decades through continuous further development – in the fast-moving IT world, this is certainly anything but the norm.”
Thomas Hellwig, Project Leader at DB Fernverkehr AG
Do you have questions about mytraQ? Katharina Peine and her team will be happy to answer your questions.