Moovit taps Waze to bring carpooling to its urban transport app

Waze, the Google-owned GPS navigation app for drivers, is integrating its carpool service into Moovit, the first time Waze Carpool data has been available through any third-party transit app.

While Waze is better known for its flagship GPS app with real-time data provided by a global community of drivers, the company launched a dedicated carpool service in its native Israel way back in 2015 and in the intervening years has expanded it to Brazil, Mexico, and finally the U.S., where it launched last October.

Moovit, which claims around 500 million users globally, is best known for its consumer-facing app that combines transport options to show travelers the easiest way to get around a city. Through this app, Moovit users will now be able to view Waze Carpool options alongside all the other public transport and micromobility options. It’s worth noting that Moovit already integrates with ride-hailing services, including Uber, Lyft, and Gett, as well as myriad other transport options — from dockless bikes to scooters. But this is the first time Moovit will show carpool options from any third-party provider. Moovit does operate its own carpool service, which integrates with the main Moovit transit app, but this is only available in Israel.

Made in Israel

In many ways, this partnership was destined to happen, given the inherent synergies between the two companies. Both Waze and Moovit were founded out of Israel, and they both lean on transport data crowdsourced from their respective commuter communities. Moreover, Waze cofounder Uri Levine sits on Moovit’s board of directors.

“This is the first community collaboration of its kind, and it’s all steered by commuters, for commuters,” said Moovit cofounder and CEO Nir Erez.

The pilot program kicks off today in each of Waze Carpool’s markets and will initially be limited to Android devices, with iOS following at a later date. The idea is that the user will search for their destination through Moovit — as usual — and where public transport does not adequately cover the journey from A to B, Waze Carpool will show up as one of the suggested routes. When the Moovit user selects the carpool option, the Waze Carpool app opens on their device, at which point they can request to join a ride alongside up to three other passengers travelling on the same route.

Above: Moovit (left) showing carpool option. Waze Carpool (right) showing ride-request feature

This fits into a broader trend that has seen all the main urban mobility companies double down on “multi-modal” transport. Even Uber, which clearly competes with public transport, now displays public transit data in its main ride-hailing app. In fact, Moovit is a major partner for this offering. Moreover, Uber has for some time expanded beyond cars to offer everything from electric mopeds to bikes and scooters.

These companies say they are interested in seeing fewer cars on the road, which benefits the environment and reduces road congestion. This is also touted as a major benefit of Waze’s latest partnership with Moovit.

“Thanks to this partnership, Waze Carpool drivers will be able to connect with even more riders headed their way via the Moovit app, empowering more commuters to enjoy affordable and convenient carpools,” said Aron Di Castro, Waze’s director of business development and partnerships. “By riding together, we can all take cars off the road and help decrease traffic and congestion for everyone.”

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