Mobike

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Beijing Mobike Technology Co., Ltd
IndustryTransportation
Founded27 January 2015; 4 years ago (2015-01-27)
Beijing, China
Founder
  • Hu Weiwei (CEO)
  • Davis Wang (Former CEO)
  • Xia Yiping (Smart Traffic Lab Head)
HeadquartersHaidian District, Beijing, China
Area served
Key people
  • Davis Wang (Co-founder & former CEO)
  • Hu Weiwei (Founder & CEO)
  • Eric Yu Liu (President)
  • Wang Xing (Chairman)
ProductsDock-less bicycle sharing services
ParentMeituan-Dianping
Websitemobike.com
Mobike
Simplified Chinese摩拜单车
Traditional Chinese摩拜單車
Literal meaningModern + Worship + Bike (derived from Mobike co-founder Davis Wang's Beijing Worship Technology Co., Ltd)

Mobike (Chinese: 摩拜单车; pinyin: mó bài dān chē), also known as Meituanbike, founded by Beijing Mobike Technology Co., Ltd. (Chinese: 北京摩拜科技有限公司), is a fully station-less bicycle-sharing system headquartered in Beijing, China. It is, by the number of bicycles, the world's largest shared (for hire) bicycle operator, and in December 2016, made Shanghai the world's largest bike-share city.[1]

In June 2017, Mobike raised $600 million[2] in Series E funding led by Tencent, bringing the firm's fund raising in 2017 alone to nearly US$1 billion. In the same month, the company was valued at US$3 billion.[3]

In April 2018, Mobike was acquired by Chinese web company Meituan-Dianping for US$2.7 billion.[4][5]

In August 2018, Mobike launched an electric version of their orange bicycle.[6]

Coverage[edit]

As of 2018 Mobike operates in over 200 cities and 19 countries around the world.[7][8]

Asia[edit]

Mobike bikes in Huanggang, Hubei, China

Chinese cities with Mobike include but are not limited to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Lanzhou, Ningbo, Xiamen, Foshan, Zhuhai, Changsha, Hefei, Shantou, Haikou, Deyang, Nanning, Guiyang, Xi'an, Wenzhou, and Wuhan.[9]

Operations in Singapore, the company's first overseas market, started on 21 March 2017.[10][11]

Mobike Japan was launched on 22 June 2017, Fukuoka being its first recipient.[12] In Osaka, to gain traction for its e-bike business, Panasonic partnered with Chinese Mobike to explore the possibilities of an electric-bike-sharing service in Japan.[13]

In August 31, 2017, Mobike announced its official launch in Thailand with its partnership with AIS, Central Pattana and Kasertsat University. In the beginning of 2018, Mobike Thailand team launched its second city as Chiang Mai - Northern Thailand’s largest city.Mobike's launch is directly in line with the city government's "Non-Motorised Transport" (NMT) initiative, which focuses on promoting ecotourism through the development of a sustainable urban transport system. [14]

Mobike officially launched in Malaysia on 6 September 2017, with the first bikes being rolled out in Setia Alam[15] and Cyberjaya just a month later.

In Australia, the service was launched in Sydney in November 2017 and the Gold Coast, Queensland in February 2018.[16][17][18]

In May 2018, Mobike launched its operations in Israel in cities including Tel Aviv, Ramat Gan, Givatayim, Rehovot and Kiryat Bialik.

On 11 March 2019, Mobike requested to surrender its bicycle sharing license and cease all operation in Singapore. The fate of the 25,000 bikes are still unknown.[19]

Europe[edit]

A Mobike bicycle at Alexanderplatz, Berlin

In the summer of 2017, Mobike launched its service in Manchester, UK. It was Mobike's 100th city, and the first outside of Asia. In September, Mobike extended its service to London, quickly followed by launching in Newcastle. In October 2017, Mobike entered Oxford. In June 2018, Mobike launched in Cambridge. In September 2018, Mobike announced[20] that it was to suspend its operations in Manchester. The company said that despite Mancunians taking some 250,000 trips, cycling over 180,000 miles that during the summer of 2018 it had suffered increased bike losses dues to theft and vandalism in the city. In 2019, Mobike continues to operate bikesharing in London, Newcastle, Oxford and Cambridge.

In Italy, Mobike began operations initially in Florence in July 2017,[21] followed by Milan in August,[22] Turin and Bergamo in November,[23][24] Pesaro and Mantova in March 2018,[25][26] Reggio Emilia in May[27] and Bologna in June.[28]

On 9 November 2017 Mobike officially launched in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. The ceremony was attended by special guest Chantal Blaak (2017 world champion cycling women's road race).[29] Mobike extended its service in the Netherlands in June 2018 with the launch[30] of Mobike in Delft. In March 2019, Mobike continued its expansion in the Netherlands with a new service in The Hague.

In Germany, Mobike launched its operations on 21 November 2017 by deploying 700 bicycles in Berlin, making it the 200th city worldwide with Mobike's bicycle sharing operations.[31][32] Mobike quickly expanded in Germany by launching in Dusseldorf in May 2018, followed by Cologne in July 2018 and Hannover in September 2018.

In France, the service was launched in Paris on 24 January 2018.[33] In December 2018, Mobike and Transdev announced an exclusive partnership aiming at proposing Mobike to other French municipalities as complementary offer to public transport networks managed by Transdev.[34]

In Spain, began its first operations in Madrid on 18 June 2018[35]. Spain was Mobike's 19th country of operation, and was in support of the city’s urban mobility strategy, calling for increased use of low carbon transportation. In September 2018, Mobike entered the l'Hospitalet de Llobregat thanks to an agreement with the city council. L'Hospitalet is a neighboring city to Barcelona, is Europe’s second most densely populated city[36]. On 26 September 2018, Mobike launched in Zaragoza, becoming the company's third city in Spain.[37] In February 2019, Mobike was awarded permission to launch electronic scooters in Madrid.[38]

In Albania, this bike-sharing system was launched in Tirana on 8 June 2018.[39]

Americas[edit]

On 20 September 2017, Mobike's first bike-sharing service in the United States started from Washington, D.C..[40][41] Mobike however pulled out of Washington, D.C. after less than a year of service, in July 2018.[42] Mobike launched in Charlotte, North Carolina on 22 December 2017 and in San Diego on 23 February 2018.[43][44] Operations in The Woodlands, Texas started in January 2018 and ceased in October 2018.[45][46]

In February 2018, Mobike launched its operations in Mexico City and Santiago, Chile.[47][48]

Design features[edit]

As described by the company, Mobike is intended to solve the last mile issue in which commuters face the problem of being stuck a bit too far from their destination to walk, but too close to justify the cost or delay of finding a taxi. Similar to Call a Bike in Germany, every Mobike bicycle comes with an internet-controlled electronic wheel lock that automatically unlocks but requires manual locking after use.

Mobike bicycles are powered by a small generator installed on the rear wheel hub to power the lock, or by a PV panel in some bike models. The patented disc brake is said to withstand over 10,000 kilometres of riding without failure.

Mobike has partnered with Qualcomm[49] (using their IoT chip MDM9206) and Gemalto[50] for the use of NB-IoT technologies to provide connection for the bikes.

Mobike bicycles come in two versions, both of which requires a scan of a unique QR-code to unlock:

A Classic Mobike showing its identification number. Here the smaller "020" means a bike assigned to Guangzhou, Guangdong.

Classic Mobike[edit]

The Classic Mobike, or "Mobike", is the standard variant of Mobike bicycles. It has an all-aluminium, V-shaped chassis, puncture-proof tires, and a shaft transmission system. Instead of conventional wire spokes, it uses five sets of two thick, parallel, metal rods positioned at 72° from each other to improve durability and lower maintenance costs. The identification number of each bicycle is put on the rear part of the chassis.

Renters scan the QR-code, which is displayed at the base of the handle as well as on the smart lock.

The livery is black for the seat, handlebars and the lock, orange for the wheel and metallic silver for the body.

The bicycle weighs 25 kilograms (55 lb).[51]

Some users have complained about the Classic Mobike's weight and the lack of a bicycle basket (defended by Mobike as to "prevent spam advertising"), and difficulty in keeping balance on their first attempts, which kickstarted the development of Mobike's second iteration, the Mobike Lite.

Mobike Lite[edit]

Mobike Lite is known informally as "generation 2". It uses wire spokes and a conventional chain drive to deliver torque to the rear wheel. The identification number is on the right side on a plastic panel that protects the chain. The QR code has moved to the tip of the rear fender.

The Mobike Lite comes with a net-like metal basket and has a solar panel that powers the QR lock and GPS tracker. The wheels were coloured orange.

A Mobike Lite bicycle in Guangdong. Note the exposed transmission system.

Newer models of the "Mobike Classic" and "Mobike Lite" have adjustable seats. The Lite weighs 17 kilograms (37 lb).[51]

Second generation[edit]

According to a company press release, small batches of second generation Mobikes, both Classic and Lite, are being deployed in areas of service. Reports indicate that the second generation bicycles use a more durable aluminium kickstand rather than the formerly used hard plastic ones. Also mentioned is the new hydraulic adjustable seat installed on Generation 2 bicycles through depression of a small metal tab near the base of the seat. Finally, the second generation Classic Mobikes now also have a basket.

The colour scheme of the second generation Mobike Lite is changed to orange for the inner rim, and reverts to black for the tyre.[52]

Access[edit]

Several ofo and Mobike bikes blocking a bus stop platform

Access to Mobike bicycles requires the Mobike application, which takes a minimum deposit of one unit of country-specific currency to ensure the user supplied payment details are correct. Each user is required to register using their mobile telephone number. In China they must also register their national identification number as required by local government regulations; the software does not allow users under the age of 14 to use the app, through the identification number.

To use a bicycle, the unlocks the bike using the mobile app. The app records the distance and duration of the trip and the energy the user spent using the bike. At the end of the rental the cost is deducted from the user's account.

Payment[edit]

As Mobike has no offline services, the Mobike app only accepts online transactions through AliPay, WeChat Pay, or credit card. The user needs to have a positive balance in their account when starting the rental, but it is allowed to go negative during a trip.

The company previously required deposit in order to use the service in China, however the company ended the practice in July 2018. Users are free to withdraw their deposit from the service at any time as long as they do not have a negative account balance.[53]

Issues[edit]

Many Mobikes stacked on top of each other in Beijing

Mobike has several problems with practicality. Many people complain about bikes causing clutter; as they do not have fixed-station parking locations, users can leave Mobikes where they cause obstruction.

In some global markets such as the UK, there has been much reported vandalism of Mobikes.[54]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ 网易. "摩拜上海运营单车达十万辆——上海成全球最大智能共享单车城市_网易新闻". news.163.com. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  2. ^ "Mobike Fills Its Baskets With $600 Million in Latest Fundraising Push – Caixin Global". www.caixinglobal.com. Retrieved 16 August 2018.
  3. ^ Steinberg, Julie; Lin, Liza (20 June 2017). "Chinese Bike-Sharing Company Mobike Valued at Around $3 Billion". Wall Street Journal.
  4. ^ Chong, Zoey (3 April 2018). "This bike sharing company just got bought for $2.7 billion". CNET. Retrieved 4 April 2018.
  5. ^ "Meituan Acquires Mobike in $2.7 Billion Deal – Caixin Global". www.caixinglobal.com. Retrieved 16 August 2018.
  6. ^ "Mobike launches electric bike for dockless sharing". Dezeen. 13 August 2018. Retrieved 11 September 2018.
  7. ^ hermes (17 December 2017). "Mobike co-founder Joe Xia: The king of bike sharing". The Straits Times. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  8. ^ "Mobike Launches Spain". mobike.com. Retrieved 24 August 2018.
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  11. ^ "Mobike launches in Sapporo". Shanghai Daily. Shanghai Daily. 23 August 2017. Retrieved 24 August 2017.
  12. ^ "Mobike Japan in Fukuoka". mobike.com. Retrieved 19 October 2017.
  13. ^ "Panasonic and Mobike Partner to Push Japan's E-Bike Business". Bike Europe. Retrieved 2018-12-02.
  14. ^ https://mobike.com/global/blog/post/chiang_mai
  15. ^ "Mobike Rides Into the Heart of Malaysia". mobike.com. Retrieved 19 October 2017.
  16. ^ Cox, Charlotte (28 June 2017). "Everything you need to know about the new Mobike service coming to Manchester and Salford". Manchester Evening News.
  17. ^ "New dockless bikeshare scheme rolls out on the Gold Coast today". 21 February 2018. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
  18. ^ "Mobike Australia Begins in Gold Coast". 6 November 2017. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
  19. ^ Liao, Rita (8 March 2019). "Bike-sharing pioneer Mobike is retreating to China". TechCrunch. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  20. ^ "Goodbyes are never easy: Mobike UK suspends Manchester service". mobike.com. Retrieved 2019-03-26.
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  22. ^ "Bike sharing, a Milano arrivano 12mila nuove biciclette: con app e gps, prendi e lasci dove vuoi".
  23. ^ "Il bike sharing senza stazioni spopola a Torino: dopo Gobee Bike arrivano anche Mobike e Obike".
  24. ^ "Debutta Mobike, il bike sharing a flusso libero: si inizia con 500 bici, anche in Città Alta".
  25. ^ "Ecco il bike sharing a flusso libero, prendi la bici e la lasci dove vuoi. Tutto con un'app".
  26. ^ "Per Mobike è subito boom: oltre 1.100 noleggi in città".
  27. ^ "Reggio Emilia, rivoluzione bike sharing: arrivano in città mille biciclette cinesi".
  28. ^ "Il nuovo bike sharing "Mobike": come funziona, i mezzi, le tariffe".
  29. ^ "Mobike Launches in Rotterdam". mobike.com. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
  30. ^ "Nieuw soort deelfiets in Delft". Nieuw soort deelfiets in Delft | TU Delta (in Dutch). Retrieved 2019-03-26.
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  33. ^ "Mobike devient le quatrième opérateur de vélos en libre-service dans Paris" (in French). 24 January 2018. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
  34. ^ "Transdev va commercialiser les vélos en free-floating de Mobike aux collectivités" (in French). 4 December 2018. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
  35. ^ "Mobike begins first operations in Spain". mobike.com. Retrieved 2019-03-26.
  36. ^ "List of European Union cities proper by population density", Wikipedia, 2019-02-18, retrieved 2019-03-26
  37. ^ "Zaragoza joins the Mobike movement". mobike.com. Retrieved 2019-03-26.
  38. ^ "Vuelven los patinetes de alquiler a Madrid: habrá solo 8.600 y Cabify estará vetado". El Confidencial (in Spanish). 2019-02-12. Retrieved 2019-03-26.
  39. ^ "Mobike, the Chinese bike sharing giant, launches Tirana operations". 4 June 2018. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
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  43. ^ "Another dockless bike share is coming soon to Charlotte". 21 December 2017. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
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  47. ^ "Mobike Launches Chile". 5 March 2018. Retrieved 11 September 2018.
  48. ^ "Bike theft puts the brakes on China's Mobike in Mexico City". 31 May 2018. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
  49. ^ "Qualcomm, China Mobile Research Institute and Mobike Plan to Commence First of its Kind LTE IoT Multimode Field Trials in China | Qualcomm". Qualcomm. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  50. ^ https://www.gemalto.com/brochures-site/download-site/Documents/M2M_CS_Mobike.pdf
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  54. ^ "Manchester's bike-share scheme isn't working – because people don't know how to share". theguardian.com. Retrieved 7 July 2018.

External links[edit]