Uber is getting serious about its bike-sharing aspirations. The company just announced its purchase of Jump, the bike-sharing platform featuring "electric, dock-less" bikes. Previously, Jump bikes were available in the Uber app as part of a pilot program. Rather than going to a specific rack in the city, bikes from Jump can be dropped off and locked up wherever it's legal to park a bike. Details are scant at the moment, but it looks like you can order a bike as easy as you'd order a black car or Prius. You can also continue to use the Jump app if you'd rather.
According to TechCrunch, the purchase cost Uber around $200 million. Even with the acquisition, the bikes are still only available in San Francisco, and before Jump can expand beyond its current 250 bike offering, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority needs to evaluate Jump's first nine months of business. That decision will happen in October.
In an interview with our sister publication, Jump CEO Ryan Rzepecki said that Uber's new leadership and a new direction for the ride-hailing service are what convinced him to sell. That, and the company is pushing toward becoming an urban-transit provider and is making it easier to get around without the need for owning a car, or in this case, bike.