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Rentable escooters will be the Death of EUCs in Major cities of the World

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In Paris it began June 2018, with Lime. Now there are 6 providers, including VOI ... I’m not particularly aware of how things works out there, but since new providers arrives it’s probably not that bad ...

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17 hours ago, Scatcat said:

Here in Gothenburg VOI has started scooter rentals. But they say (I believe it when I see it) that they will update their apps to warn people if they're parking their scooters in obviously idiotic places. To me that seems to be rather ambitious, you basically have to rely on the accuracy of the GPS and zone the map carefully. Well, all power to them if they manage it.

So far I've seen amazingly few idiotic parkings of their scooters, but I have also seen a lot of people wobbling about at 20-25kph without even a helmet on... I do hope there won't be any serious accidents happening.

20 - 25?? They need to super limit those speeds. No one needs to be going that fast on a mini wheeled scooter when they have 0 protection and probably rarely ride scooters. Thats a disaster waiting to happen. 

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7 hours ago, Scatcat said:

I wish them luck. It would be a game changer.

Indeed, success would provide every major city in the world rental scooters exist a litter control template. Something I feel is badly needed. 

I was driving by a horse ranch in the outer, rural suburbs of DC. The horses were busy grazing and there was literally a lime scooter smack in the middle of the grazing field chillin with the horses; unbelievable.

An associate of mine has complained about rental scooters left on the roof of his building. The building is secured. Tenants enter by code input.

Commuting tenants are probably using this tactic to hack the system locator by keeping a wheel close enough to limit the need to search very far when they activate the feature by renting a scooter for their morning commute. . 

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In St Louis LimeBike pulled completely out, as they lost too many bikes to theft and vandalism AND the eScooter ended up being far more preferred by customers.

https://m.riverfronttimes.com/newsblog/2018/08/21/in-st-louis-lime-bikes-get-sliced-up-like-well-limes

https://m.riverfronttimes.com/newsblog/2019/02/04/bike-sharing-is-dead-in-st-louis-for-now

I now wonder if shared bicycles and eScooters which I thought would be better for everyone and Mother Nature is, unexpectedly, worse for all of us, as it's evidently a collosal waste of resources, that is the lifecycle of a shared bicycle or an eScooter is kinda the best way of having sex; nasty, short and brutish and someone's getting their brakes cut on their way home.

https://www.city-journal.org/html/cycle-violence-15842.html

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/vby5j4/bike-sharing-doomed-to-fail-dallas-limebike-ofo-transportation-cycling

And of course, the infamous Chinese bikeshare graveyards, with seemingly enough metal to construct several Yamato class battleships. The scale is truly enormous, the biggest problem being, of course, industry being extremely efficient in bike production, but with vandalism being a magnitude more effecient. Apparently the shared vehicle life span is about three months, although so is the "break-even" cost.

https://www.theatlantic.com/amp/photo/556268/

Until we make Draconian laws punishing vandals via their GPS on their cellphone, then the onus of protecting shared vehicles is too great for now. Perhaps we're stuck with private ownership, but then if you're going that route then why not build a wall around the motor and passengers...

 

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18 hours ago, nrvfromcnr said:

In Paris it began June 2018, with Lime. Now there are 6 providers, including VOI ... I’m not particularly aware of how things works out there, but since new providers arrives it’s probably not that bad ...

I don't understand this. More and more competitors and they all basically offer the same. Some M365 or Ninebot SE2 scooter that costs 1 euro to unlock and 15 cents per minute to ride. How can you compete when you basically offer identical products?

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12 hours ago, Lutalo said:

Commuting tenants are probably using this tactic to hack the system locator by keeping a wheel close enough to limit the need to search very far when they activate the feature by renting a scooter for their morning commute. . 

Or they make money out of it. Chargers that collect scooters at night get more money for scooters that are hard to find. So what happens? People hide them.

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3 hours ago, ir_fuel said:

Or they make money out of it. Chargers that collect scooters at night get more money for scooters that are hard to find. So what happens? People hide them.

Interesting. Hadn't considered that. I had read an article about how ruthless the charging contractors had become. Some of them even getting into fights over scooter finds and trying to establish "territory" domain around Washington.

Amusing, reminds me of the time I witnessed two dudes get into a fight over who had eminent domain of an intersection for panhandling. These two guys were trying to kill each other for coins in a cup. There is a bit more at stake for scooters so I don't want to imagine how deep the rabbit hole. 

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You're right.

For now it's fun and games at most places, the rush for the scooter at night (let's not forget how this new mobility solution introduces people driving reckless with vans to be the first to collect a bunch of scooters in our cities ....), but this will spiral out of control and people will start hurting/sabotaging others. It's just a matter of time.

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4 hours ago, ir_fuel said:

Or they make money out of it. Chargers that collect scooters at night get more money for scooters that are hard to find. So what happens? People hide them.

I looked into charging my local Bird and Lime Scooters and concluded I would barely break even, at about 3 to 5 dollars per hour if nothing went wrong and assuming I would stay within 1-3 miles of my home.

The guy below had about the same conclusion, but since I lived near a major popular park my expenses were way lower while the capture bonuses were way higher.

As far as I can tell, scooter companies just logically kept reducing capture bonuses until people stopped signing up...but that didn't happen. Therefore hoarding scooters until their capture bonuses rises makes complete sense.

If you had a large eBike with huge bags that could carry 10 eScooters at a time, then I think you could make it work in the 20 to 30 dollar per hour range. Maybe.

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4 minutes ago, LanghamP said:

If you had a large eBike with huge bags that could carry 10 eScooters at a time, then I think you could make it work in the 20 to 30 dollar per hour range. Maybe.

SJM-L-JUICERS-XXXX-20.jpg?w=620

 

What's also crazy is the working hours. You have to pick them up extreme late in the evening and drop them off extremely early in the morning. 

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In many cities around the world we have the bike rentals, where you unlock your bike from a bike-stand holder and then use it for as long as you like before returning it to the same or any other such bike-stand. I think these rental companies would win a lot of good will and save themselves a lot of headaches if they used that kind of setup. Especially with the bike-stand being a charger and the customer getting some small reimbursement on the unlock cost for bothering to put it into the charger. More customers would know where to actually find a scooter and be happy to know their scooter is charged when starting off.

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2 hours ago, LanghamP said:

I looked into charging my local Bird and Lime Scooters and concluded I would barely break even, at about 3 to 5 dollars per hour if nothing went wrong and assuming I would stay within 1-3 miles of my home.

The guy below had about the same conclusion, but since I lived near a major popular park my expenses were way lower while the capture bonuses were way higher.

As far as I can tell, scooter companies just logically kept reducing capture bonuses until people stopped signing up...but that didn't happen. Therefore hoarding scooters until their capture bonuses rises makes complete sense.

If you had a large eBike with huge bags that could carry 10 eScooters at a time, then I think you could make it work in the 20 to 30 dollar per hour range. Maybe.

Yeah. Seems like a hell of a way to hustle for a dollar. I could see being a viable opportunity for highschool or college kids doing it to earn pizza money

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16 hours ago, LanghamP said:

In St Louis LimeBike pulled completely out, as they lost too many bikes to theft and vandalism AND the eScooter ended up being far more preferred by customers.

https://m.riverfronttimes.com/newsblog/2018/08/21/in-st-louis-lime-bikes-get-sliced-up-like-well-limes

https://m.riverfronttimes.com/newsblog/2019/02/04/bike-sharing-is-dead-in-st-louis-for-now

I now wonder if shared bicycles and eScooters which I thought would be better for everyone and Mother Nature is, unexpectedly, worse for all of us, as it's evidently a collosal waste of resources, that is the lifecycle of a shared bicycle or an eScooter is kinda the best way of having sex; nasty, short and brutish and someone's getting their brakes cut on their way home.

https://www.city-journal.org/html/cycle-violence-15842.html

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/vby5j4/bike-sharing-doomed-to-fail-dallas-limebike-ofo-transportation-cycling

And of course, the infamous Chinese bikeshare graveyards, with seemingly enough metal to construct several Yamato class battleships. The scale is truly enormous, the biggest problem being, of course, industry being extremely efficient in bike production, but with vandalism being a magnitude more effecient. Apparently the shared vehicle life span is about three months, although so is the "break-even" cost.

https://www.theatlantic.com/amp/photo/556268/

Until we make Draconian laws punishing vandals via their GPS on their cellphone, then the onus of protecting shared vehicles is too great for now. Perhaps we're stuck with private ownership, but then if you're going that route then why not build a wall around the motor and passengers...

 

Perhaps all of this will culminate in a buying frenzy fueled by regulation against scooter littering. Such laws would heighten I dusted and personal responsibility in a manner that might make the convenience of ownership more attractive to current serious renters.

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5 hours ago, Scatcat said:

In many cities around the world we have the bike rentals, where you unlock your bike from a bike-stand holder and then use it for as long as you like before returning it to the same or any other such bike-stand. I think these rental companies would win a lot of good will and save themselves a lot of headaches if they used that kind of setup. Especially with the bike-stand being a charger and the customer getting some small reimbursement on the unlock cost for bothering to put it into the charger. More customers would know where to actually find a scooter and be happy to know their scooter is charged when starting off.

TBH that system sucks.

We have that in Brussels and what happens is that they all seem to move from the same locations to the same locations, so at peak hours you won't find any at popular spots for commuters. Or you arrive at your destination and all the bike stands nearby are full.

For actually finding them the current system is a lot easier. Just open Lime in any city center where they are and you'll find one not far from your position.

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20 hours ago, LanghamP said:

And of course, the infamous Chinese bikeshare graveyards, with seemingly enough metal to construct several Yamato class battleships. The scale is truly enormous, the biggest problem being, of course, industry being extremely efficient in bike production, but with vandalism being a magnitude more effecient. Apparently the shared vehicle life span is about three months, although so is the "break-even" cost.

Looking at the amazing photographs in the article you linked, I am reminded of a chapter from "the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy" where a geological layer of shoes is discovered.  I forget the reason for them, but I think it was something to do with a generation of people who made too many shoes for a really stupid reason. I can't believe the actual the stupidity of it all.

main_1200.jpg?mod=1521743422

main_1200.jpg?mod=1521743422

Edited by Smoother

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3 hours ago, Lutalo said:

Perhaps all of this will culminate in a buying frenzy fueled by regulation against scooter littering. Such laws would heighten I dusted and personal responsibility in a manner that might make the convenience of ownership more attractive to current serious renters.

Don't know. The plus side of this system is that you don't have to lug a transportation device around when not needed. 

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1 hour ago, ir_fuel said:

Don't know. The plus side of this system is that you don't have to lug a transportation device around when not needed. 

That's an overrated plus. 

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13 hours ago, ir_fuel said:

How can you compete when you basically offer identical products?

That's the beauty of it - the only thing the customer cares about is which scooter happens to be closest when they need one, so as long as you drop them off somewhere there are people someone is bound to prefer downloading a new app to walking X distance.

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1 hour ago, BarrettJ said:

That's the beauty of it - the only thing the customer cares about is which scooter happens to be closest when they need one, so as long as you drop them off somewhere there are people someone is bound to prefer downloading a new app to walking X distance.

The problem is there's no guarantee the scooter you left at your destination will still be there when you come back. Most of the time when I've tried to rent a scooter it would be gone by the time I got there, and indeed the first time I rented a scooter I nearly lost the race to it (1 of 3) despite it being only seven minutes away (taking an EUC to chase down an eScooter is the height of redundance).

Are there enough scooters? Yes and no; there's not even close to enough scooters to meet demand yet there's too many scooters in plain sight to not piss people off. And you really need there to be a scooter within walking distance, as the outward bound scooter will take you much farther than you intended to go. Especially if you have a buddy on another scooter.

It really feels like eScooters have proliferated like cockroaches, but like cockroaches they wouldn't be around if they didn't have a food supply, and it's very apparent that everyone rides them. The US cities that have forced the scooter companies to share ridership data shows these scooter having an insane amount of usage.

I wonder if it'd be a public good for the cities to simply take over all the scooters in their cities, like a public utility, as only the pimp hand of the government can bitch slap the punks that vandalize their scooters.

 

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It's amazing how fast all these developments have occurred. It seems like scooter rentals have been around forever, but in 2017 cities like San Diego were still concentrating mostly on bikeshare programs. Back at the end 2012, San Diego signed a contract with bikeshare provider Deco-Bike (at the time one of the largest) only to realize over time that you need infrastructure for docked sharing models to work.

It seems like forever ago, but by the end of 2017 lobbyists were pressuring San Diego leaders to accept dockless bike rentals; these were clearly the future. (No mention of scooters or electric anything...) Dockless bike sharing was big in China since Ofo started their service waaay back in 2015, before spreading their model across the country and later globally.

So much happened in 2018 to the dockless world that one thing's clear: cities cannot keep up with fast pace of changes occurring in the ride-hailing/sharing space... San Diego is a prime example. Poor planning, execution, lack of infrastructure, lackluster support for solutions that actually work, and now pandering to public sentiment with proposals to over-regulate a fledgling scooter-rental industry.

I highly doubt that city control is the answer.

Edited by RayRay
These damn scooters are the worst thing since sliced bread!
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32 minutes ago, RayRay said:

Poor planning, execution, lack of infrastructure, lackluster support for solutions that actually work, and now pandering to public sentiment with proposals to over-regulate a fledgling scooter-rental industry.

The city would also require scooter companies to apply for a six-month operational permit with a to-be-determined fee and pay $150 per scooter or bike each year. 

In my opinion scooter companies should register their vehicles as a car because the yearly fee on a $500 valued car is less than $150

A 50 pound scooter weighs 100 times less than a 5000 pound light truck/SUV; am I informed that those 5000 pound vehicles will now pay $15,000 per year? That'd seem about right.

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On 2/26/2019 at 1:02 AM, Lutalo said:

That's an overrated plus. 

For you maybe.

For most people it's a big advantage. No worries about where to park it, no worries about it getting stolen, no worries about carrying it inside buildings, no need to carry it on public transport etc etc

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9 hours ago, ir_fuel said:

For you maybe.

For most people it's a big advantage. No worries about where to park it, no worries about it getting stolen, no worries about carrying it inside buildings, no need to carry it on public transport etc etc

The scooter rental system works in a such a way that renters cannot take rental scooters inside of buildings in most places anyway. How is it singled out as a measurable preference without a direct survey on that specific feature If renters are prohibited by regulations from taking them inside of buildings anyway?

The behavior of not carrying scooters into a building is a product of limiting regulations and supported by a system convenient enough that people don't have to specifically care about the portability of the devices. The behavior of not toting scooters into buildings itself doesn't indicate a renter preference either way. 

I am sure that easy availability improves convenience and mitigates fear of not being able to locate; thus, reduced need or desire to take a scooter into a building or otherwise keep it. However, that is related to the overall convenience of the system; not to the specific feature of a rider aversion or disdain for carrying scooters into buildings. Behavior would change If the overall convenience of the system were reduced. You would then likely see more people trying to keep them, and wanting to port and keep them to increase convenience. There are apparently situations where competition for the devices reduces convenience. In these situations I see scooters stashed on the roofs of secure apartment buildings so that tenants who  use them have easy access. Someone, has also suggested that the hording behavior is related to the competitive freelance charging environment. 

Scooter owners, similar to EUC owners, seem to consider the ability to keep their device with them a theft-reducing benefit. If DC was littered with EUCs like it is scooters for rent I wouldn't care whether or not I could take the EUC into a building with me; even though they are highly portable. If they were available like rental scooters, I would treat them like rental scooters (I have to admit though, that thinking of treating my EUC like a scooter makes me grind my teeth:)). However, as an owner, "convenience" takes on different characteristics; portability and security becomes a more valuable feature and function. 

Edited by Lutalo
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21 hours ago, LanghamP said:

The city would also require scooter companies to apply for a six-month operational permit with a to-be-determined fee and pay $150 per scooter or bike each year. 

If that applied specifically to dockless scooter rental operations that would be great. 

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