Cyberjaya will be the first city in Malaysia to offer both Mobike and oBike bike sharing service. So what are the differences between these two companies?
The red & silver bikes have landed in Malaysia a few weeks ago at Setia Alam (a suburb near Kuala Lumpur) but Cyberjaya will become the first city in Malaysia to have both Mobike and oBike bicycles available for the city’s residents.
Mobike is the world’s largest bike sharing company with over 100 million users worldwide, and they are present in over 170 cities worldwide.
There are currently three bike sharing companies operating in Malaysia – Mobike, oBike and ofo. I had the opportunity to try all three and will soon write a more comprehensive review and comparison for each one.
If you’re new to the bike sharing concept, the bikes can be rented by using a smartphone app. All you need to do is to create your account, pay a deposit (explained more below), scan the QR code on the bike to unlock it and off you go.
Since it’s a stationless concept, you won’t need to return the bike at the original place where you rented it from.
Simply park it nicely and appropriately at designated bicycle (or motorcycle) parking spaces. It’s about common sense – the aim is to make the bicycle accessible for the next person.
The bikes from Mobike are very superior and made of aluminium alloy. One thing you’ll notice immediately is that it doesn’t have any chain like conventional bicycles.
They come with a dynamo-powered light for night cycling and a basket that can support up to 5kg of weight.
The ones that are made available for Malaysia is what they call the Classic Mobike.
Their smart lock technology comes with a SIM card that is able to capture ridership data.
I rode a small loop near our office and the app tracked me all the way. Not ideal for those who want privacy.
Meanwhile, oBike can only track where you first unlocked the bike and the location where you locked the bike.
Deposit for Mobike is only RM9 during the launch period, normally it will be RM99.
oBike is currently having a deposit promo of RM49, down from RM129 when it was first launched. Students only need to pay RM19 deposit to use the oBike, but Mobike is still cheaper as it’s RM9 flat rate for all users.
The rental rate is RM1.50 for every 30 minutes compared to oBike which is RM1.00 for every 15 minutes. Currently the rides for both Mobike and oBike are free until October 9th and September 30th respectively.
If you have a Mobike app installed with an account activated, you can ride any of their 7 million bikes around the world. During my recent trip to Yinchuan in China, I was able to rent a Mobike there without any problem.
Are we going to see similar issues like what’s happening in China whereby bicycles are piling up on the streets?
Very unlikely. That’s because in Cyberjaya, the bikes are being deployed in much smaller numbers and they are part of Cyberjaya’s smart city pilot projects.
The operators are required to monitor the bicycles and to make sure that they are always parked properly.
Cyberjaya just turned 20 this year and the master plan of turning it into a low carbon and bike-friendly city is slowly becoming a reality.
Summary of Differences Between Mobike vs oBike
Bike colour: Silver & Red
Deposit: RM9 during the promo period
Rate: RM1.50 for 30 minutes
Launched in Malaysia: September 2017
Entry into Cyberjaya: TBA (very soon!)
Additional features: light, basket, alarm system
Bike colour: Silver & Yellow
Deposit: RM19 for students, RM49 for non-students
Rate: RM1.00 for 15 minutes
Launched in Malaysia: April 2017
Entry into Cyberjaya: June 2017 under pilot program with Cyberview
Additional features: basket on some of the bikes, tubeless wheels
Despite what people said about the hot weather in Malaysia is not suitable for cycling, the data (confidential) that we got from oBike shows otherwise.