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Bike-sharing startup Spin is getting into scooter-sharing

Megan Rose Dickey
Because there are not enough ways to get around major cities and campuses, Spin is working to launch stationless electric scooter-sharing.

Because there are not enough ways to get around major cities and campuses, Spin is working to launch stationless electric scooter-sharing. These aren't the electric scooters you see in San Francisco, operated by Scoot Networks. These are essentially electrified Razor-like scooters that can go up to 15 mph and cover 18 miles on a single charge.

“Spin’s mission is to transform cities and campuses with smart mobility solutions,” Spin co- founder and President Euwyn Poon said in a statement. “We believe in multiple modes of last-mile transportation and the electric scooter is a fast, fun option for short distances. The introduction of the electric scooter marks the transition of Spin into a true multi-modal mobility platform for cities and campuses.”

In order to deter theft, Spin's scooters require riders to unlock the wheels with the app. There is also a built-in GPS on each scooter.

Last August, Spin brought its stationless bike-share program to South San Francisco after launching in Seattle earlier that year. Then, just last month, Spin unveiled its stationless electric bike.

Although the company is based in San Francisco, it's going to be a little while until it can launch its stationless bike-share in the city. That's because the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency granted an exclusive 18-month pilot to JUMP for stationless bike-sharing.

It's not clear if the SFMTA's permit with JUMP prevents other companies from launching other types of stationless transportation sharing services. I've reached out to the SFTMA and will update this when I hear back. During a demo of the scooter, Poon told me the company is in early talks with the SFMTA and expects its stationless bikes to receive a permit "soon."

Unlike Spin's bikes, which you can rent for $1 for 30 minutes, the scooters will be a bit more expensive to rent, costing $1 to unlock and then 15 cents per minute. Spin's plan is to first launch these scooters in some of its existing markets, which include Seattle, Washington D.C. and Dallas.

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