You may have seen one of many bright yellow bikes, left unchained, and being ridden by a whole host of Bristolians. ‘Get Around for Just £1’ is the motto of YoBike, whose adapted bikes have been dotted around the city waiting for you to download the app and get pedalling.

The thriving cycle culture in Bristol meant that it was the obvious choice to launch the scheme that will see 300 bikes catering to the cycling needs of Bristol. Should this trial go well, a further 200 will be delivered and then the scheme will be rolled out across other cities in the UK.

Where be bikes?: Screenshot from the YoBike app telling you the location of bikes near you

Why Yo?

YoBike is the brainchild of Chinese tech entrepreneur Bin Wang, who was named as one of China’s 30 under 30 entrepreneurs by Forbes magazine in 2013. Bin worked closely with co-founder and YoBike UK CEO Michael Qian on the design of the bikes and development of the app, with both looking to Bristol to lead the cycling revolution.

“We’re really pleased to be launching this innovative bike scheme in Bristol – the UK’s cycling capital”


Cambridge University engineering PhD Michael, who has previously worked at management consultancy McKinsey and US investment bank Merrill Lynch, says, “We’re really pleased to be launching this innovative bike scheme in Bristol – the UK’s cycling capital.”

He adds, “Our bikes are easy to use, durable and good value, and thanks to our app locking system, there is no need to install costly and obstructive bike docks all over the city. We’re very proud with what we’ve created in YoBike, we really hope Bristolians will love it.”

On yer bike

Monitoring the payment, location and security of this bike is a ubiquitous app that can be download for iOS and Android. TechSPARK’s roving reporters took up the chance to have a go with gusto – well, it is only a pound!

Click to play: Watch TechSPARK’s Alice reporting from the front line 

The YoBike has been designed and tested in accordance with the most stringent European safety standards. A number of security measures have been installed to detract thieves from targeting the bikes including location tracking, an alarm which goes off if the bikes are tampered with and custom-made parts which will not be of much use to private bikes, thus tricky to sell.

“Anyone who steals these bikes will be disappointed”


“Anyone who steals these bikes will be disappointed,” says Michael.

Want to give it a go for yourself, first download the app for iOS or Android. In fact, why not take it along to our tech + cycle + networking Meetup group TechRIDE?