Case Study

Shaping the Mobility Revolution with hvv switch

Facts & Figures

Hamburger Hochbahn AG


  • The largest transportation company in Hamburg with 6,000 employees, and one of the largest public transport providers in Germany.
  • The company transports some 1.2 million passengers every day.


  • The city of Hamburg is growing – and so are the requirements for mobility in the metropolitan region. Since 2019, we have supported Hamburger Hochbahn in establishing smart mobility solutions for the city and its residents. The goal: to make the switch from individual cars to shared mobility services like carsharing and LPT even more attractive in the Hamburg metropolitan region.


  • Analysis & optimization
  • Discovery
  • UI and UX design
  • Prototypes
  • UX testing
  • Native Development
  • Continuous Development


As the strategic digital partner of Hamburger Hochbahn AG, FFW developed a multimodal platform that provides different mobility services for public and private providers centrally and via one single login under the name hvv switch. This gives Hamburger Hochbahn AG full control over customer data and payment processes.

Hamburger Hochbahn was looking for a partner to develop the iOS/Android app who is a master of innovative practices in addition to having many years' experience in development. A demonstrable strength in creating apps with a professional UI/UX design was critical, and we needed to be able to trust them to give us advice on an equal footing. FFW was exactly the partner we were looking for.

Patrick Steingässer, Head of Division for Hochbahn Information Management


The switch from individual cars to local public transport (LPT) or other shared mobility services has to be as easy as possible. To make this a reality, Hamburger Hochbahn didn't just need an app that made using buses and trains as convenient as possible – they also wanted a platform which deeply integrated different sharing providers, so that passengers can book and pay for them via one app, using one single login. And they wanted to be able to expand it to include smart services like the mobility budget, smart ticketing (cheque-in/cheque-out payment model), or displaying available parking spaces.

Hamburger Hochbahn AG needed a platform in which all of its services and the services of third party mobility providers were deeply integrated and bookable using one single app. At the same time, the company wanted to gradually expand the platform, and extend the hvv switch points with smart services such as a mobility budget, hvv Any (a smart ticket system that automatically records the bus and train routes travelled and calculates the cheapest price at the end of the day), or an availability display for parking spaces.

Integrating these different services and technologies was a huge challenge for the project team: dozens of new and outdated IT systems had to be connected with each other, while parking spaces and trains had to be fitted with sensors, or have payment and billing systems integrated. Integrating Google in the map service was another struggle.


With the hvv switch app, FFW has created a unique digital solution that allows passengers to use different mobility services with just the one login. There's no need to install different apps, create several accounts, or store different payment methods.

Hamburger Hochbahn AG and FFW have managed to integrate two alternative mobility providers already, in addition to Hochbahn's own services: ridesharing provider Moia and carsharing company Sixt Share. "Switch points," carsharing parking spaces, and their availability are also visible in the app. The smartphone app even includes a world first: if you search for a destination in Hamburg using Google Maps, you can then purchase a hvv switch ticket directly. Hochbahn is the very first LPT partner to offer something like this.

And the app still has much to offer: we are working together with the entire hvv switch team on integrating other services, including e-scooters and hire bikes. And the mobility budget and the smart billing model hvv Any mean the next smart services are already in the works.

We've created a service that's fun with its convenient and intuitive usability and user navigation. But that's not all. As an app, hvv switch is also helping citizens and visitors "switch" from their own cars to shared mobility, meaning we're reducing the ecological footprint of Hamburg's residents.


With the support of FFW, Hamburger Hochbahn succeeded in becoming a flagship mobility project in the shortest possible time. The mobility platform hvv switch is the only LPT initiative project partner in the "National Platform Future of Mobility" and receives federal funds and technical support.