Bikesharing 2018 Update: New Companies and Technologies

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It’s been a while since we have talked about bikesharing since our major 2016 update, an important aspect of the shared mobility landscape, so we’ve decided to provide a bikesharing 2018 update. Here’s a recap of what you might have missed in the global bikesharing community this year.

Bikesharing 2018 Update

New Cities for Bikesharing

Since the start of the year, bikesharing has continued to climb, in spite of some tragic news you may have heard about graveyards of dockless bikes. Here are some of the cities to watch out for, with growing bikesharing programs:

  • Pune, India: The first giant to enter the Indian market early this year, Ofo is a Beijing-based bikesharing app created by five students at the Beijing University in 2014, which has grown to 250 cities and 21 countries. In March, Ofo launched in the township of Pune and has now expanded to seven Indian cities including New Delhi, Indore, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Pune, Coimbatore and Chennai.
  • Bangalore and Delhi, India: Mobike has big plans in India, against their rival Ofo, and is working with city planners and governments of India to cut down on traffic congestion with the use of a new bikeshare program. A sustainable transport system is needed in pollution-heavy India, so Mobike intends to grow its dockless bikeshare program to up to 12 cities across India over 2018 and 2019.
  • Chicago, Illinois: Three bikeshare operations including Pace, LimeBike, and Ofo have launched pilots that will run for six months in the South Side of Chicago. In order to avoid bike theft and the “dockless debate,” these programs feature a “lock-to” feature requires dockless bikes to be locked to racks or street signs when not in use. The city will allow companies that meet that “lock-to” condition to operate with 250 bikes, while the free-floating companies will be limited to 50 bikes until July.
  • St. Petersburg, Florida: May marks a year of Coast Bike’s bikesharing program in St. Petersburg, Florida, and a review shows that residents are using them to commute: 55% of trips taken are by users who live in the city of St. Petersburg, says Coast, and a whopping 79% of trips taken are by residents of Florida.

New Features for Bikesharing

  • Lock-to features: Dockless, sure, but in order to avoid the “dockless graveyards” as seen around the world, such as in China, dockless bikeshare programs are now requiring riders to lock their bikes to a post before taking off.
  • Electric bikes and charging stations: It was only a matter of time, and we are now seeing electric bikeshare programs popping up – such as BYKKO in Newcastle – which offers 100 electric bikes and 19 charging stations for tourists and commuters.
  • Technologies to power electric bikesharing: Superpedestrian recently raised 16.5 Million from investors to launch technologies to power electric bikesharing programs. These technologies include sensors, embedded motor controllers, and software to undergo onboard diagnostics to identify maintenance problems and alert the fleet operator of needed repairs.

Over the course of the last year since our 2016 update, there have been many learnings of what not to do in bikesharing, such as technology hacks and dockless bikeshare nightmares. But we are happy to report that primarily we are seeing positive growth in bikesharing.

Interested in learning more about bikesharing statistics globally? Contact us here for a downloadable report.

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