Skip to main content

The creators of the Boosted board have launched an electric scooter-sharing service

The creators of the Boosted board have launched an electric scooter-sharing service

/

Available now in Washington, DC

Share this story

Electric scooter-sharing (and bike-sharing) services have inundated West Coast cities like Los Angeles, Santa Monica, and San Francisco over the last few months. Despite some complaints and some vandalism, it’s only a matter of time before they make it out East en masse, too. One of the first companies to give that a shot launched today in Washington, DC. It’s called Skip, and it was started by Sanjay Dastoor and Matt Tran, the same pair who created the Boosted board.

The battery on Skip’s scooters lasts about 30 miles, and they have a top speed of around 18 miles per hour. Skip works like most other dockless scooter-sharing services: you find a free scooter using the Skip app, scan a code to unlock it, and take off. Skip charges a dollar per ride, and 15 cents per minute, according to a profile in TechCrunch today. You can leave the scooter anywhere within certain limits, presumably. (The company’s terms of service and privacy agreements aren’t live on its website yet.) Then, a team of volunteer “chargers” will be paid to collect ones that are running low on juice.

One way Skip will try to set itself apart from competitors like Bird or Lime is by the quality of its scooters. Where those other companies use smaller, more lithe scooters created by Xiaomi, Skip has apparently modified much bigger and sturdier ones from a Singapore company called Minimotors. They have full suspension, a wider riding area, and headlights / taillights. Eventually, Skip will make its own scooters, according to TechCrunch.

But the real point here seems to be that Skip wants its service to be all about scooters that feel safer to ride, while also using ones that are more durable than the competition’s. These are things that Boosted have become known for with its electric skateboards, so it’s not surprising to see Dastoor and Tran emphasizing the same qualities at Skip. (Dastoor left his post as Boosted’s CEO last year but remains on the board. Tran left a few months before him.)

The other way Skip is trying to distinguish itself is in how it behaves. In other words, Skip isn’t going to try the same disruptive (and somewhat unpopular) strategy employed by its competitors. Instead of just dumping a few hundred scooters and seeing what happens, Skip says it got all the necessary permits before launching in DC. It also says it plans to work closely with city regulators to grow its scooter-sharing service before expanding to San Francisco.

Dockless sharing services, whether scooter or bike variety, have drawn just about as much praise as they have rankled cities. It will be interesting to see if Skip’s more measured approach can do anything to shift that balance. While the startup boasts about $6 million in financing, thanks to an initial investment round led by Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, that’s a far cry from the hundreds of millions of dollars Bird and Lime already have to play with. As if that’s not enough, Uber’s in this space now, too.

Today’s Storystream

Feed refreshed Two hours ago Not just you

T
Youtube
Thomas RickerTwo hours ago
Table breaks before Apple Watch Ultra’s sapphire glass.

”It’s the most rugged and capable Apple Watch yet,” said Apple at the launch of the Apple Watch Ultra (read The Verge review here). YouTuber TechRax put that claim to the test with a series of drop, scratch, and hammer tests. Takeaways: the titanium case will scratch with enough abuse, and that flat sapphire front crystal is tough — tougher than the table which cracks before the Ultra fails — but not indestructible.


E
Twitter
Emma RothSep 25
Rihanna’s headlining the Super Bowl Halftime Show.

Apple Music’s set to sponsor the Halftime Show next February, and it’s starting out strong with a performance from Rihanna. I honestly can’t remember which company sponsored the Halftime Show before Pepsi, so it’ll be nice to see how Apple handles the show for Super Bowl LVII.


E
Twitter
Emma RothSep 25
Starlink is growing.

The Elon Musk-owned satellite internet service, which covers all seven continents including Antarctica, has now made over 1 million user terminals. Musk has big plans for the service, which he hopes to expand to cruise ships, planes, and even school buses.

Musk recently said he’ll sidestep sanctions to activate the service in Iran, where the government put restrictions on communications due to mass protests. He followed through on his promise to bring Starlink to Ukraine at the start of Russia’s invasion, so we’ll have to wait and see if he manages to bring the service to Iran as well.


E
External Link
Emma RothSep 25
We might not get another Apple event this year.

While Apple was initially expected to hold an event to launch its rumored M2-equipped Macs and iPads in October, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman predicts Apple will announce its new devices in a series of press releases, website updates, and media briefings instead.

I know that it probably takes a lot of work to put these polished events together, but if Apple does pass on it this year, I will kind of miss vibing to the livestream’s music and seeing all the new products get presented.


Welcome to the new Verge

Revolutionizing the media with blog posts

Nilay PatelSep 13
E
External Link
Emma RothSep 24
California Governor Gavin Newsom vetoes the state’s “BitLicense” law.

The bill, called the Digital Financial Assets Law, would establish a regulatory framework for companies that transact with cryptocurrency in the state, similar to New York’s BitLicense system. In a statement, Newsom says it’s “premature to lock a licensing structure” and that implementing such a program is a “costly undertaking:”

A more flexible approach is needed to ensure regulatory oversight can keep up with rapidly evolving technology and use cases, and is tailored with the proper tools to address trends and mitigate consumer harm.


A
Youtube
Andrew WebsterSep 24
Look at this Thing.

At its Tudum event today, Netflix showed off a new clip from the Tim Burton series Wednesday, which focused on a very important character: the sentient hand known as Thing. The full series starts streaming on November 23rd.


A
The Verge
Andrew WebsterSep 24
Get ready for some Netflix news.

At 1PM ET today Netflix is streaming its second annual Tudum event, where you can expect to hear news about and see trailers from its biggest franchises, including The Witcher and Bridgerton. I’ll be covering the event live alongside my colleague Charles Pulliam-Moore, and you can also watch along at the link below. There will be lots of expected names during the stream, but I have my fingers crossed for a new season of Hemlock Grove.