T-Systems acquires GeoMobile to boost mobility

  • May 15, 2023
  • Steve Rogerson

T-Systems has acquired Dortmund-based software company GeoMobile to strengthen its portfolio for transport with an IT platform for barrier-free urban mobility.

GeoMobile is a young company, active in the growth market of intermodal mobility. It offers public transport operators a mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) platform. This platform bundles the entire mobility offering of a transport region, be it the company’s own or that of third-party providers.

A range of mobility services tailored to the travellers’ needs is expected to make it more appealing to give up driving one’s own vehicle. Passengers plan, book and pay for their trip by bus and train, as well as connections via car sharing or rental bikes, all from their smartphone. They receive travel information in real time.

The platform consists of an app framework for passengers, hardware components and a software cloud. The cloud platform with retrofittable communication modules turns vehicles into smart objects. This so-called in-vehicle option enables barrier-free driving assistance via smartphone. With this acquisition, the Deutsche Telekom subsidiary is strengthening its market position for MaaS and in-vehicle intelligence in the Dach region.

“The transformation of mobility is taking place,” said Peter Lorenz, senior vice president at T-Systems. “Public transport will further expand its vital role. With the help of mobility platforms, transport companies are mastering the challenges of digitalisation. In the future, they will be able to offer their passengers mobility with all modes of public transport within a region, simply and digitally via an app. In this way, they are making the much-needed mobility transformation attractive.”

The white-label mobility app for smartphones provides route calculation from starting point to destination, booking and payment, all from a unified source. Local public transport, cabs, rental bikes, car sharing and navigation for walking routes complement each other smoothly.

GeoMobile’s check-in and be-out procedure turns a mobile phone into a ticket. All it takes to check-in to the vehicle is a swipe of the smartphone. The system registers when the user then leaves the vehicle.

Communication modules can be retrofitted into vehicles and selectively along travel routes, to enable barrier-free travel assistance. They also improve operational processes via associated IT applications.

For example, vehicle data can be transmitted for fleet management purposes, such as tank and battery levels or engine speed. A programming interface provides easy integration of the functions into existing public transport apps.

The mobility data cloud bundles all data and seamlessly links the mobility platform with control centres, third-party systems, and information and payment systems. It records vehicle use and provides relevant services for mobility management and traffic control in an online portal.

“T-Systems is well established in the public transport sector and has a full-service portfolio for buses and trains,” said Michael Gerhard, CEO of GeoMobile. “We hope the transaction will give us broader market access in the Dach region and synergies from joint product development, such as modular vehicle components in the internet of things.”

The company’s technology is used in twelve transport companies with over 20 million passengers daily.

GeoMobile was founded 2008 in Dortmund as a spin-off of Fraunhofer Institute for Software & Systems Technology. With 30 members of staff GeoMobile specialises in mobile technology for public transport companies with a focus on usability and accessibility. Participating in large-scale European and national research projects and combining technology expertise with commercial acumen, GeoMobile exploits research and development into products, services and technology.