Andrew J. Hawkins
Andrew J. Hawkins
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Electric scooters aren’t quite as climate-friendly as we thought

Electric scooters aren’t quite as climate-friendly as we thought

Electric scooter companies like to tout their green credentials, frequently reminding riders that every two-wheeled trip they take can help reduce carbon emissions and fight climate change — but the truth is much more complicated. A new study from North Carolina State University found that shared e-scooters may be more environmentally friendly than most cars, but they can be less green than several other options, including bicycles, walking, and certain modes of public transportation. Riders tend to think they’re making the right move by hopping on a scooter that’s electric and thus...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
August 4, 2019
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Uber’s $1-Per-Ride ‘Safe Rides Fee' Had Nothing to do With Safety

Uber’s $1-Per-Ride ‘Safe Rides Fee' Had Nothing to do With Safety

Uber imposed a $1-per-ride surcharge it called a “Safe Rides Fee” in 2014, but it was a just a play for profit. The money collected by the company from the fee — estimated at around $500 million — was never earmarked specifically for safety and was “devised primarily to add $1 of pure margin to each trip,” according to from New York Times reporter Mike Isaac’s new book .At the time, Uber was facing rising costs from insurance and background checks, so the company came up with the idea of imposing a safety fee to help boost its margins. Meanwhile, its actual safety program consisted of...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
August 24, 2019
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Uber and Lyft have a driver shortage problem, and it’s costing them a lot of money

Uber and Lyft have a driver shortage problem, and it’s costing them a lot of money

Filed under:Uber says it will spend $250 million on a ‘stimulus’ for driversUber and Lyft have a driver shortage problem. With the number of US-based drivers for both apps down around 40 percent, the two companies are pledging to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to lure people back into the driver seat.Uber announced Wednesday that it was launching a $250 million “stimulus” for drivers in the hopes of speeding their return to the platform.“In 2020, many drivers stopped driving because they couldn’t count on getting enough trips to make it worth their time,” Dennis Cinelli, Uber’s vice...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
Apr 7
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China cracks down on use of Tesla vehicles, citing privacy concerns

China cracks down on use of Tesla vehicles, citing privacy concerns

Filed under:Military and government personnel won’t be allowed to use the company’s electric carsChina is prohibiting its military and government personnel from using Tesla vehicles, citing a potential security risk posed by the electric automaker’s data collection, .People who work for the military, “state-owned enterprises in sensitive industries,” and other government agencies will be barred from driving a Tesla, the Journal says, citing sources with knowledge of the crackdown. The decision came after a “security review” flagged the ability of Tesla’s exterior cameras to constantly...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
Mar 19
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Uber and Lyft will share information about drivers deactivated for serious offenses

Uber and Lyft will share information about drivers deactivated for serious offenses

Filed under:The companies will share information on drivers deactivated for assault and murderUber and Lyft announced a “first-of-its-kind” effort to share information about drivers who were deactivated for committing serious offenses, including physical and sexual assault and murder.Uber and Lyft will pool information under the banner of the Industry Safety Sharing Project, which will be administered by a third party. The companies will share “information about driver deactivations related to the five most critical safety issues within the , along with physical assault fatalities,” Uber...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
Mar 11
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Waymo simulated real-world crashes to prove its self-driving cars can prevent deaths

Waymo simulated real-world crashes to prove its self-driving cars can prevent deaths

Filed under:The company used real-world fatal crashes that took place in Arizona over a decadeIn a bid to prove that its robot drivers are safer than humans, Waymo simulated dozens of real-world fatal crashes that took place in Arizona over nearly a decade. The Google spinoff discovered that replacing either vehicle in a two-car crash with its robot-guided minivans would nearly eliminate all deaths, .The results are meant to bolster Waymo’s case that autonomous vehicles operate more safely than human-driven ones. With millions of people dying in auto crashes globally every year, AV...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
Mar 8
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Biden wants to replace government fleet with electric vehicles

Biden wants to replace government fleet with electric vehicles

Filed under:As of 2019, there were 645,000 vehicles in the federal government’s fleetPresident Joe Biden will start the process of phasing out the federal government’s use of gas-powered vehicles and replacing them with ones that run on electricity. The announcement is the fulfillment of a promise Biden made on the campaign trail to swap government fleet vehicles with American-made EVs.“The federal government also owns an enormous fleet of vehicles, which we’re going to replace with clean electric vehicles made right here in America, by American workers,” Biden said during a briefing Monday...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
Jan 25
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Revel introduces a $99-a-month e-bike subscription for NYC residents

Revel introduces a $99-a-month e-bike subscription for NYC residents

Filed under:The shared moped company is branching out into e-bikesElectric moped rental company Revel is expanding its product lineup to include monthly e-bike subscriptions for residents of New York City. It’s the latest company to try to capitalize on by shifting to a Netflix or Spotify subscription model for transportation.For $99 a month, interested customers can get a stylish electric bike manufactured by NYC-based e-bike company Wing delivered straight to their door. The price also includes complimentary maintenance, including flat tires fixes, loose chains repairs, or brake upkeep....

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Andrew J. Hawkins
Feb 16
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GM surprises with autonomous Cadillac and flying car concepts

GM surprises with autonomous Cadillac and flying car concepts

Filed under:CES wouldn’t be CES without some bonkers-looking conceptsCES wouldn’t be CES without some bonkers, far-out vehicle concepts. And thankfully, General Motors brought two.The automaker showed off a luxury egg-shaped autonomous vehicle and a single-seater electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft during its keynote address on Tuesday. Both vehicles are part of Cadillac’s Halo Portfolio and probably won’t be going into production anytime soon — or at all.Still, the concepts are meant to show off Cadillac’s (and, by extension, GM’s) design intentions for future products,...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
Jan 12
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Volkswagen offers new details about its adorable ID Buzz electric microbus

Volkswagen offers new details about its adorable ID Buzz electric microbus

Filed under:A passenger version will be released in the US in 2023Volkswagen clarified some new details about the release of the ID Buzz, the electric microbus that we first saw in concept form ., VW’s head of commercial vehicles, Carsten Intra, confirmed previous reports that was . In addition, only the passenger version of the ID Buzz was getting a US-release, while Europe would be seeing both a commercial and passenger version of the van.The commercial version will be VW’s first autonomous vehicleThe entry-level version of the ID Buzz will likely have rear-wheel drive and 200 horsepower,...

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Andrew J. Hawkins
Mar 26
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