Fujitsu and MIT develop on-demand transport technology in order to maximize operator profits
Fujitsu and MIT have developed a new on-demand transport technology that dynamically reassigns the vehicles to different operating modes to avoid vehicle oversupply or shortages. Riders can choose which mode of transportation they wish to use among several options, while transport service operators can maximize profits at the same time. With this technology, a conventional- or minivan-sized taxi can be dynamically assigned to operate in taxi mode, ride-share mode, or fixed-route mode. Riders notify service operators of ride requests using smartphones or other smart devices, and are presented with options for transportation mode, boarding time, and fares. This makes the system responsive to a variety of transit needs.
The optimization framework optimizes the transportation options based on passenger choice in order to maximize operator profits as follows:
Quantify degree of satisfaction for each transportation option based on price, wait time, ride time, deviation from desired schedule, and transportation mode.
Generate combinations of feasible transportation options.
Calculate which option from the combinations is likely to be chosen, and the probability of that choice, based on a predictive model of selection behavior.
Based on the choice probability for each transportation option and the profit to be earned from each transportation option, select and present the combination that is expected to maximize operator profits.
This optimization framework, which presents options in response to each ride request, can balance supply and demand and increase operator profits.
For instance, when there are a lot of riders going in the same direction at the same time, that will favor ride-share and fixed-route modes, and when there are few riders going in the same direction at the same time, taxi mode will prove more likely.