Next-Gen Mobility News, September 1st

Volume 13

Welcome to the next edition of our bi-weekly recap of the latest and greatest in connected and on-demand mobility. 

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Uber and Lyft to continue rideshare operations in California ahead of Proposition 22 vote
Ballotpedia News, August 25th
California residents still have access to Uber and Lyft. On August 20, the California First District Court of Appeal stayed a superior court judge’s decision, effectively allowing rideshare companies Uber and Lyft to continue operating in the state ahead of a vote on Proposition 22 on November 3. Prop 22 would define app-based drivers as independent contractors rather than classifying them as employees.
Amazon wins FAA approval for Prime Air drone delivery fleet
CNBC, August 31st
Amazon received federal approval to operate its fleet of Prime Air delivery drones, the Federal Aviation Administration said Monday, a milestone that allows the company to expand unmanned package delivery.
How Texas-based rideshare service Alto is taking on Lyft and Uber
Yahoo Finance, August 25th
Will Coleman, co-founder and CEO of Alto, joined The Final Round to discuss how Alto sets itself apart from competitors by employing its drivers and owning a dedicated fleet of vehicles and what the Uber and Lyft lawsuits in California mean for the rideshare space.
Watch a Toyota-backed flying car’s first public, piloted test flight
Engadget, August 29th
Toyota-backed SkyDrive has finally conducted a public, crewed test flight (via Observer) for its flying car after years of work. The startup flew its SD-03 vehicle around the Toyota Test Field in the city of Toyota with a pilot at the helm. While it wasn’t autonomous, as you might have guessed, it showed that the aircraft could work as promised in the field.
Hear from Lyft, Cruise, Nuro and Aurora about the road ahead for driverless vehicles
Tech Crunch, August 28th
Autonomous vehicles have yet to become mainstream, but companies like Lyft,  Cruise,  Nuro and Aurora are still fighting the good fight. The AV space has always faced its share of regulatory and development hurdles, but this year brought a new set of hurdles with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Autonomous vehicles should benefit those with disabilities, but progress remains slow
Venture Beat, August 21st
An MIT report estimates truly autonomous vehicles might not hit the streets for a decade. And when they do, it’s difficult to say whether they will fully accommodate all riders, including those with disabilities. Driverless car technology promises to remove barriers to personal transportation, but few self-driving operators have made headway on solutions for customers with mobility, vision, and hearing impairments, including seniors and those with chronic health conditions.
Grubhub fights back against COVID-19 food delivery commission caps
New York Post, August 19th
Grubhub is launching a petition on Thursday to end food-delivery commission caps that have been imposed during the pandemic by the New York City Council, The Post has learned. The food-delivery giant, which also owns Seamless, is taking out targeted digital ads in the districts of council members who support the caps, including Speaker Corey Johnson, a source said.
Home cooking on demand: This food delivery company just raised $8.8 Million
Forbes, August 20th
Over 26,000 US restaurants have permanently closed their doors since pandemic lockdowns began in March. Yet delivery apps like DoorDash and Grubhub continue to see record demand for restaurant-quality food. Shef, an Airbnb-like platform for home cooked meals, is ramping up to meet that demand while providing opportunities for immigrants to earn money by sharing the home cooking of their cultures.
Nearly 200 current and former Uber employees sue over stock price decline since IPO
CNBC, August 28th
Nearly 200 current and former Uber employees sued the company Thursday, alleging it broke an agreement that would have granted them shares at a lower rate and saved them millions of dollars in income tax. 
Need a 911 for a month? Porsche Is expanding its subscription program
Motor Trend, August 25th
Many automakers have tried—and some have already abandoned—car subscription services. But Porsche has always operated in more rarified air. Convinced of the strong demand for its performance vehicles, if even for only a day or a few weeks, the German sports-car maker is introducing a new monthly single-vehicle subscription program in four American cities starting September 25, while also expanding its other subscription programs.
VW files ‘e-Thing’ trademark – hinting at off-road electric vehicle
Electrek, August 31st
VW has filed a new trademark for ‘e-Thing’ — hinting at a possible new off-road electric vehicle. The German automaker already has a pretty full lineup of new ID electric vehicles based on its MEB electric platform in the works.
Mobility in the pandemic — and after
UC Davis, August 18th
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on how much people move around, their means of transportation and on who gets to stay at home. There could be long-term shifts in how we use transportation — and policymakers need to start addressing these changes before new habits are set, according to two UC Davis experts appearing on UC Davis LIVE: COVID-19 Aug. 13.