Social CyclingBy Sara McGuyer • Aug 24th, 2010 • Category: Trail Blazers
Bicycling just got a shot in the arm as a strong option for public transportation in the US. Sobi, the Social Bicycle System, offers bicycle sharing in a model reminiscent of Zip Car. Sobi is an innovative mash-up showcasing what is possible at the intersection of good design, technology and social strategy.
Once an account is created, ’social cyclists’ can use a smart phone to locate and unlock nearby bikes. Users can track the environmental impact of their bike trips, as well as calories burnt on the Sobi system.
Bike share programs have popped up in cities across Europe and Asia, but relatively few are up and running in North America. Sobi claims to have trimmed the per-bike start up costs to only $1,000, down from the $3,000 – $4,000 spent per bike in existing initiatives.
The SoBi team is currently still in prototyping and will test their system in New York City this fall.