Bangladesh’s first bicycle sharing app, called JoBike, was launched on Monday with test runs at the tourist hub city of Cox’s Bazar.
The JoBike mobile application enables users to find bicycles for rent. After downloading the app, users will have to sign up and can then scan a quick response code on the bicycle to unlock it for use.
Officials from the company said that initially, there will be about 20 bicycles which will be available on the bicycle rental service. The company will decide on rolling out more bikes based on the success of the pilot runs.
Users can get bicycle from three points in Cox’s Bazar – Kolatoli, Sugandha and Laboni point, and they can be rented automatically through the JoBike app.
A top official of the company said they are not concerned about the bicycles being stolen as they are using the Internet of Things (IoT) in their specially-designed bikes to prevent theft.
The rates have not been set yet, but officals from JoBike say they will probably set the price at Tk1.50 per minute. There is also a promotional offer for free rides for the first seven days.
JoBike Founder Mehdi Reza is a former product operations manager at Alibaba Group, the largest online trading company in the world.
JoBike Operations Manager Istiaque Ahmed said they have plans to run another pilot program on the Jahangirnagar University campus, with another 20 bicycles, from the first week of July.
The company hopes that it will gain popularity very soon as it is an environment-friendly mode of transport, and this kind of bicycle-sharing service is very popular in countries like China, Singapore and a number of European countries.