500 Bikes Will Soon be Dumped on Cambridge

By Gary Cutlack on at

A new bike sharing scheme is about to launch in the gently undulating bike nirvana of Cambridge, with Chinese firm Ofo soon to test our national sense of honesty by leaving 500 rental bikes undocked for riders to casually tool about on.

The idea, or hope, is that honest people will use the company's app to locate their nearest bike, pay a small fee, then take it for a ride. The interesting bit about the concept is that there's no base or docking station -- you just dump it when you're done with it, with the app updating with its location so the next rider can pick it up.

There's a small level of security involved to make sure all the bikes don't end up at the bottom of the river Cam, though. Each bike has a number plate on it, which users key into the app. This then generates a PIN to unlock the bike's cafe lock, then away you go. Rides cost 50p each, whether you ride 200 meters for a laugh or try to take one of the lumpen things for a 20-mile tour of the outskirts. [Wired]

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