Go on city bikes, there is a new docked, shared bike service in town – it’s just electronic. Next week, Joko will be the first shared operator in New York City to launch a network of e-bike stations on private property for public use. The service, powered by the shared mobility platform Volog, will start with 30 stations and 300 e-bikes located in the vicinity of Manhattan, and will expand to 100 stations and 1,000 bikes by June.
This is not the first new shared operator to hit the streets of New York this year. Last week, the city announced the winning companies of e-scooter pilots in the Bronx. But while no city bikes were limited to working on a portion of the Bird, Lime and Vio Bronx away from the area, Joko has no such barriers.
The company’s bikes will first be installed in parking garages around the city, including the city’s largest parking operator icon parking garage, but the company said it is optimistic it will expand to residential and commercial buildings in the near future.
By refraining from operating or maintaining e-bikes, the company basically pays the landlords to provide this opportunity. New York co-founder Jonathan “Johnny” Cohen told TechCrunch, “The first thing that sets us apart from city bikes is that our bikes are 100% electronic, 100% premium.” (Both co-founders are named Jonathan Cohen – one from New York, the other from London. Did Joko get that?). “You can save our bikes in advance and as we live as private property, our stations have hand sanitizers, the bikes are not raining every night, they are a little clean and easily accessible.”
The fleet of city bikes is about 30% electronic. In order to charge e-bikes, the elevator-owned company must manually remove the discharged vehicles from their stations, while Joko’s vehicles will be charged at the stations. Like city bikes, each e-bike can charge up to 30 miles. “It’s enough to get close to Manhattan several times,” said London Joe (another moniker to differentiate between the two John / John Cohen). “We hope our vehicles will always be charged and ready for the customer. You may lose purpose when you are riding a bike that is too durable and then come up with a gas-burning vehicle to replace the batteries. We want to be a truly environmentally friendly company and provide more consistent and reliable services.”