Why Scooters Succeed Where Segways Failed

Segways were invented 17 years ago, but the technology feels as if it's been dead for a while. So why are scooters continuing to attract cities and investors?

1 minute read

June 13, 2018, 7:00 AM PDT

By Casey Brazeal @northandclark

Personal Mobility

Orhan Cam / Shutterstock

Brad Stone estimates the electric scooter share business with 10,000 scooters on the roads is making about $100,0000 in revenue every day, with plenty of room to keep growing. While much has been written about dockless scooters clogging up sidewalks, investors seem to think this transit mode has legs. "Meanwhile, both Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. have applied to introduce e-scooters in San Francisco, where the local government is set to authorize a pilot program after temporarily clearing the city of scooters last month," Stone reports.

Stone sees the price point and on-demand model as the key reason this transit mode survives while vehicles like Segways failed in the past. A ride on a Bird or LIme e-scooter costs around $2 for a 6-minute trip, so there's not much to keep curious consumers from trying them out.

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