China is known as an overcrowded country. It has a 3.7 million square mile surface that hosts 1.381 billion people. Photos and videos of Chinese citizens being pushed against bus windows at rush hours are circling the world. One of the main solutions that streamlined traffic was bike-sharing companies.
Ofo and Mobike Are the Main Bike-Sharing Companies Competing for World Supremacy
There are millions of bikes on sidewalks that are actually privately held. However, people can rent them by scanning a code by themselves. When they’re done with the two-wheeled vehicle, they can leave it exactly where they are. Someone else will surely need the bike from there. This precise business model China wants to export overseas. China is the first country that developed a multi-billion revolution with the help of bicycles.
The bike-sharing apps have been downloaded for at least 100 million times which unlock access to millions of bikes. The concept proved successful and popular for a nation that is dealing with an overcrowding issue. Therefore, the model might soon be replicated in other parts of the world as well.
There are two Chinese rivals, Ofo and Mobike, which are trying to compete with each other for the first company that covers the world with their bikes. Last month, Ofo activated 100 bicycles in Seattle. From this point on, the company intends to seize the entire U.S.
Each of them possesses at least 7 million bikes that are operational in over 150 cities. However, while they provide a green and clean alternative to private transportation, such businesses started gathering negative reviews.
Privately Held Bikes Are Becoming a Nuisance for Foot Traffic
That’s because these minimalistic vehicles are becoming a clogging source for sidewalks. Office buildings, subway stations, road intersections, and shopping malls began encountering numerous food traffic problems due to the stacks of privately held bikes abandoned in front of them. On top of that, broken bikes are being dumped by rivers, parks, highways, and not recycled.
The core issue stems from the freedom customers have in choosing where to abandon their rented two-wheeled vehicles. While this solution yielded greater results than the usual docking stations, ride-sharing companies need to improve their method before social media triggers a backlash against them to take them down.
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