These Bikes Use GPS And Mobile Data To Create A Better Sharing Network
Mobike is a purpose-built cycle set to be implemented in Singapore as a transportation supplement in 2017
A startup in China called Mobike is creating a bike sharing platform from the ground up. Unlike other bike-sharing programs, their bikes are purpose-built and can be parked anywhere in the city.
Without stations, these bikes makes borrower switching more organic by naturally concentrating the rides to where there is more commuter traffic. To borrow a bike, riders just have to scan its unique QR code and the bike will magically unlock itself.
This transition into internal locks was made possible through built-in GPS and a cellular connection. The built-in antennae gives the bike internet access wherever it is parked. And for power to run the chips and lock, it counts on a user’s leg muscles. As it is pedaled, generators inside the bike reroute some of the work to the batteries.
Built to last, Mobike declares their bike to be maintenance-free for a period of four years. With a pure aluminum body, it’s not as prone to corrosion. The solid wheels, probably the most serviced part of a regular bike, don’t require air so there is never a need to “gas up.” The chain and the gears are all hidden inside an aluminum chassis. These moving parts are protected from the elements (mud, bits of grass, sand, rocks) which can help the 6-month-old startup extend the life of their bikes.
The park-anywhere scheme seems to work for Mobikes already operating in Beijing. However, the company is making strides to convince users to park only at designated areas. Using GPS tracking, rule breakers are punished by extra fees on their next ride.
Local paper Straits Times reports Singaporean Vertex Venture Holdings have invested in the company. By next year, the bikes are expected to populate Singapore. The paper also reveals China pricing for Mobikes are at U$0.15 per 30 minutes, after a U$44.22 deposit. No pricing structure has been released yet for Singapore.
In a bid to improve their already efficient train and bus systems, Singapore has been aggressive in the hunt for last mile solutions. From autonomous golf carts to autonomous car-hailing options, the city-state is itself a commuter’s paradise.