It started in Paris 2007 with a city wide bicycle sharing program. Automated bicycle stations were set up all over the city, and a membership got you 20 minutes of riding time free of charge. If reaching would take longer, you just changed bikes after 20 minutes.
Then, France’s Bollore Group wanted to try it with cars. By 2014 there were 2,500 electric car sharing vehicles on the road and 4,000 charging stations. The price was a very reasonable €10 a month subscription fee and €6 every 30 minutes. Although the program had some glitches involving mechanics and vandalism of the operation, it has become very successful and claims around 200,000 subscribers in Paris.
The program has since spread to most major cities in France, to Turin, Italy and Indianapolis, U.S. and is coming to London and Singapore this year. There are other companies competing in this market as well, but the Bollore Group will probably remain the market leader due to its experience in the program and its contracts with Bolivian lithium suppliers.
Cities need a way to solve congestion. This solution means fewer traffic jams, the end to parking hassles, no need for gas stations, no smelly taxi/ Uber drivers and less pollution. Short of the driverless cars that may be upon us soon, this is a solution for cities today.