Smartphones and Urban Transportation Mode Choice
25 Pages Posted: 29 Mar 2017 Last revised: 26 Mar 2018
Date Written: February 20, 2018
The arrival of smartphones has profoundly impacted how commuters make travel decisions. Using travel diary data, we estimate a discrete choice model that identifies a significant complementarity between smartphones and commuting via public transit. We address potential correlation in unobservables for smartphone ownership and mode choice by making use of excludable variables: mode-specific prices, travel times, and the release of the iPhone 4s (the first iPhone featuring Siri). We find that 18% of transit commutes as well as 4.5% of smartphone ownership in the sample can be attributed to this complementarity.
Keywords: smartphones, mode choice, discrete choice
JEL Classification: R41, L96, C25
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation