As one notices, shared bicycles have become quite popular in Tokyo. In the city center, shared bicycles are located next to buildings that one would not expect to find in the city center, and even in areas far from the city center, there are shared cycle stations in many places. It has become very convenient to ride a short distance.
One might think that the widespread use of shared bicycles would discourage people from buying their own bicycles, but this is probably not true. It is true that the number of people buying bicycles may decrease, but they will not disappear. But they will not disappear. There are a certain number of people who are not satisfied with the ordinary bicycles used for shared bicycles.
What will happen when shared bicycles become popular is not a decrease in the number of bicycle buyers, but a polarization in the number of bicycles purchased. Fewer people will buy the ubiquitous granny's bike, but the road bikes that serious cyclists desire will continue to sell. As a result, inexpensive bicycles that can be bought casually will be hard to find, and the only bicycles people will want to buy will be high-end road bikes. I suspect that this kind of polarization will happen in the automobile industry as shared rides become more common.
|May 2022 PEOPLE TOKYO|
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