Deutsche Bahn adopts LTE-M for bike sharing

  • April 11, 2022
  • William Payne

German national rail operater Deutsche Bahn has partnered German telecom operator Telekom to upgrade Deutsche Bahn’s bike sharing service with LTE-M technology as well as a new app and easier rental via QR code scans. Front baskets with solar cells supply the bikes’ electronics with emission-free solar energy 

The bikes from Call a Bike, Deutsche Bahn’s bikesharing service, now feature Telekom’s LTE-M technology optimised for IoT, used for the first time in the new electronic bike locks. Thanks to the wireless connection, users can locate the bikes rapidly and check them out or lock them in seconds: With the Call a Bike app, users scan the QR code on the bike, confirm the booking on their smartphone and the lock opens immediately. 

The high-speed network connection is stable even in densely built-up areas and requires little energy. This makes the bikes more sustainable, as the batteries in the locks no longer need to be recharged as often as before. Solar cells on the front basket supply the bikes’ electronics with solar energy. Since the baskets are front-mounted, users always have their luggage in view. Also new are green and red LEDs on the lock. They signal to users from a distance whether a bike is available. They also indicate during the ride whether the bike can be returned to the current location.

Jürgen Gudd, Chairman of DB Connect: “With our bikes from Call a Bike, people in 80 cities and municipalities can get around flexibly, quickly and climate-neutrally in their daily lives. Rail travellers can seamlessly continue their journey with the bikes straight away from the station. The new rental bikes complement public transport and thus fulfil the desire of many people to be mobile cheaply and without their own car.” 

Hagen Rickmann, Managing Director Business Customers at Telekom Deutschland GmbH: “Call a Bike is a prime example of how cutting-edge technology can positively influence and sustainably change mobility in the city. Reliable, standardised connectivity like LTE-M is the basis for green innovation, to the benefit of our customers, partners and our society.”