If you’re looking to get a lift into the city or elsewhere, pinging an Uber or Lyft is probably your most likely course of action. But hang on before tapping that app, as there’s another option in town. Here Mobility has taken to CES 2019 to launch SoMo — short for “social mobility” — a ridesharing, all-in-one travel app that brings all your options together.
The crux of the SoMo app revolves around user-created “Gatherings” — essentially just events, they can be set as public or private, depending on the event in question. For instance, if you were heading to a popular beach spot on a sunny day, you might create a public Gathering for that location. Anyone else heading to that location will be able to see your Gathering, and will be able to send a ride request if they’re near your planned route. You’ll then be able to accept or deny your new passenger. If accepted, SoMo’s navigation will automatically change your route to pick them up. Private events work similarly, but you’ll have to invite people for them to be able to see it.
Here Mobility posits that this system could also be used to plan daily work commutes, and allow workmates to pitch in and car pool effortlessly — because this app is essentially just the next generation of car pooling. By leveraging the power of social media, SoMo has made it easy to organize trips with your friends and share rides — saving and limiting the impact of fuels.
“SoMo taps into the power of social networks to reimagine the future of transportation,” says Liad Itzhak, senior vice president of Here Mobility. “Increasing the average car occupancy will make traffic jams disappear and will have an enormous impact on our planet, reducing pollution and making it much greener.”
It’s not all about this “social driving” though, and if you’re not feeling particularly social, SoMo can book a taxi to an event, too. After finding a Gathering on SoMo — or creating one yourself — SoMo will display available taxi services, along with an estimate of how long it will take to get to the destination and how much it will cost. Then it’s just a case of waiting for the taxi service to accept your ride request.
If this app has piqued your interest, you can check it out right now. It’s available on both iOS and Android, and Here Mobility is showing the app off at CES 2019. While Uber and Lyft have a stranglehold on ridesharing app services, at least for the time being, it’s possible SoMo will find its niche with car pooling and organizing for community events.