This is a guest post, read more here.
I’ve been invited to share my life in Shanghai for a while but haven’t met such a great motivation to compose an article until I tried Mobike today.
I believe it’s not rare to hear about public bicycle. But there were so many shortcomings which used to annoy me a lot. As you may have experienced, you need to go to an office to register an account, an appointed spot to pick up and return the bike. Most of the case, I ended up with no spare bike when I routed my way specifically to the bike storage spot because the short of amount and maintenance.
At the end of my working time today, I needed to go to the badminton court for weekly exercise with my friends. It’s like 3 km away from my office. What I used to do was to take a bus and then walk there, which took me about 20 min. Today, I started a totally new journey with Mobike.
Starting from zero, I downloaded the app for seconds, took just another minute to register an account and bound my Alipay payment tool. Yes, we need ID number to increase user’s reliability and deposit 299 CNY (40 euro) by Alipay or wechat payment method. Before I stepped out of the office, I could find where the spare bikes were locating around me and I could reserve one bike for me for 15min. Great, the closest one is just 20 meters. Here I go, just less than two minutes’ tapping on cellphone, I can already start bicycling.
By scanning the QR code on the bike, it was unlocked automatically. After 7 minutes, I was already in front of the court gate and parked the bike against a tree (parking places for a common bike). I manually pushed the button on the wheel. The app got noticed and charged me 0.5 CNY (about 7 cents euro) automatically. The trip ended! The experience to me was really exciting.
The bike is designed so considerate that it doesn’t ask for too much maintenance. With untraditional wheel and mechanical design, the bike doesn’t suffer from the usual chain problem. The bike itself has positioning system which is powered by users’ ride.
One more observation, once I counted one minute at a crossroad, nine out of ten bicyclers were riding the Mobike or ofo. (ofo is another brand of shared bike but with less user experience)
To me, a common user, this new generation of shared bike is absolutely a cheap, green, convenient and efficient travel way within short distance.
If you are interested in how we take taxi in Shanghai, I plan to share with you in a another blog. Please comment below and let me know what you wanna see.