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Cities are transforming as electric bike sales skyrocket



Cities around the world are grappling with the same issue: how to safely reopen in the COVID-19 era. Public transportation systems in places like New York, London, and Paris typically carry millions of people to work and to shops each day, amounting to roughly 1.5 billion trips each year. Now, nobody wants to be on a crowded subway and risk exposure to the virus if they can avoid it. But if everyone jumps into cars instead, traffic will grind to a halt, interfere with emergency vehicles, and reverse advances many cities made toward reducing carbon emissions during lockdown. That’s why city planners and residents alike are looking at the humble bicycle as their way out.

Bicycles are the ideal mode of transportation as cities emerge from quarantine, made even more appealing now that summer is approaching in the US and Europe. They’re fast, comfortable, convenient, and allow you to socially distance while being active. When paired with an electric motor, e-bikes can make even long commutes a relaxing and sweat-free experience. They also help maintain the dramatic air quality improvements seen in cities around the world since coronavirus confinements began.

In some US cities, multilane roads and car parking can take up 50 to 60 percent of all real estate. In addition to robbing residents of parks and other open areas, it makes social distancing on congested sidewalks nearly impossible. What better time to rethink transportation models and reclaim space allocated to CO2-belching vehicles from a bygone age?

If not now, when?

Initially, some companies saw traditional bicycle and e-bike sales dampened as the global supply chain was disrupted by lockdown orders and bike stores were forced to close. But now, sales are booming globally, with many buyers opting for electric bikes for the first time.

In Germany, for example, sales dropped by 20 to 30 percent in the first weeks of April due to bike store closures. But now that they’ve reopened, bike shops are reporting a sudden burst of sales, according to bike-eu, with e-bikes outpacing regular bikes as people move from leisure-only buying to daily use.

The same thing happened in the US, said Ryan Citron, senior research analyst at Guidehouse. “E-bike sales initially got hit pretty hard during lockdowns since many retail stores were closed down,” Citron said in an email to The Verge. “However, since bike shops have reopened, sales have been increasing rapidly.” If stores can stay open, Citron expects e-bike sales to keep in line with previous forecasts or slightly surpass them by the end of the year “as consumers look for more personal mobility options and physically distanced transport in the age of COVID.”

Matt Powell, senior industry advisor for the NPD Group, told The Verge that US retail sales of e-bikes in the first quarter of 2019 grew 90 percent year over year.

Sales of the Gocycle GX e-bike are up 65 percent.
Image: Gocycle

Some of the most popular e-bike companies say they are seeing these trends reflected in their sales receipts.

Brompton, the London-based maker of iconic folding bikes, saw UK online sales from both accredited retailers and via grow rapidly — five times higher than the previous month — even as global sales fell over the last two months compared to the year earlier. In the last three weeks, though, the company saw record-breaking sales in China as travel restrictions were lifted. Brompton’s website traffic has been through the roof, especially in the US where the company has seen an “incredible surge in interest,” according to a statement sent to The Verge.

UK-based Gocycle saw a sales bump with its direct-to-consumer sales model. Sales of its fast-folding Gocycle GX e-bike are up 65 percent in the last six weeks compared to the same period in 2019, the company told The Verge, with traffic to its website up 90 percent. The company attributes the growth to changing commuter habits in response to the pandemic.

“Smart commuters are investing for the long term and going for e-bikes,” said Gocycle founder Richard Thorpe. “We have seen sales of our fast-folding Gocycle GX range rocket upwards within the last few weeks — literally at a rate 4x in urban areas compared with this time last year. COVID is pulling the adoption curve forward.”

Dutch e-bike maker VanMoof sells bikes online and through its own brand stores, bypassing traditional bike stores completely. It says that sales from February to April were up dramatically compared to the same period last year. Sales increased in all its main markets, including Germany (+226 percent), the UK (+184 percent), the Netherlands (+140 percent), the US (+138 percent), and France (+92 percent). The uptick was at least partially driven by discounts ahead of the launch of its S3 and X3 e-bikes in April.

US bike retailer Lectric eBikes reported a 140 percent increase in sales since March 15th. “Our customers have been saying that e-bikes are a great option for the new coronavirus-era way of living,” said co-founder Levi Conlow to Electrek. “The dramatic increase in sales shows that nationally, people are looking to shift how they get around.”

Seattle-based Rad Power Bikes said its sales in April increased a whopping 297 percent year over year, vastly exceeding the company’s expectations. The company’s sales to business customers in the delivery sector also rose 191 percent from March to April this year, a spokesperson said.

Aventon Bikes, based in Ontario, California, claims to be flooded with orders, with sales up in Massachusetts (+298 percent), California (+85 percent), and New York (+164 percent). “We have been busier than ever, we are literally breaking records daily on orders and sales,” Adele Nasr, chief marketing officer for Aventon, said in an email.

Globally, Google notes a spike in searches for “best electric bike” starting on March 22nd, less than two weeks after the World Health Organization declared the new coronavirus a pandemic. Even more people began searching for “best bike” during the same period.

An influx of new bicycles will need infrastructure to keep those riders safe. It won’t happen overnight, but even bike-friendly cities like Amsterdam — where roughly half of all commutes occur by bicycle — had to start somewhere.

The UK is leading the transformation by committing hundreds of millions of pounds to make cities more bike-friendly while urging the public to avoid public transportation. A £250 million (about $300 million) emergency fund has been carved out of a £2 billion cycling and walking package to create new bike lanes and safer junctions “within weeks.” Towns and cities have already been told to reallocate road space “for significantly-increased numbers of cyclists and pedestrians.” E-scooters are currently illegal in the UK, but trials are being accelerated from next year to next month to possibly change that.

This street in London, just outside of the Brixton Tube station, has been reclaimed by pedestrians as part of the Streetspace program.
Image: TfL

British Transport Secretary Grant Shapps argues that alternative modes of transportation will have both short- and long-term benefits well after the pandemic subsides:

During this crisis, millions of people have discovered cycling — whether for exercise or as a means of safe, socially-distanced transport. While there is no change to the ‘stay at home’ message today, when the country does get back to work we need those people to stay on their bikes and be joined by many more.

Otherwise, with public transport’s capacity severely restricted at this time, our trains and buses could become overcrowded and our roads gridlocked – holding up emergency services, critical workers and vital supplies.

We know cars will continue to remain vital for many, but as we look to the future we must build a better country with greener travel habits, cleaner air and healthier communities.

Last week, London Mayor Sadiq Khan and Transport for London (TfL) launched the Streetspace program that will transform London streets to accommodate an expected tenfold increase in cycling and fivefold increase in walking as lockdown restrictions are relaxed. Much of the work is temporary but could become permanent, according to TfL.

Other European cities have kicked off similar initiatives. Milan, one of the most polluted cities in Europe, plans to convert 22 miles (35 km) of streets into cycling and walking space over the summer as COVID-19 restrictions are lifted. The city’s plan includes temporary cycle lanes, new and wider sidewalks, lower 20 mph (30 kph) speed limits, and streets where bicyclists and pedestrians take priority over cars.

“We worked for years to reduce car use. If everybody drives a car, there is no space for people, there is no space to move, there is no space for commercial activities outside the shops,” said deputy mayor of Milan Marco Granelli in comments reported by The Guardian. “Of course, we want to reopen the economy, but we think we should do it on a different basis from before.”

France is installing temporary bike lanes in cities nationwide. Paris plans to open up 400 miles of pop-up bike lanes and will convert its biggest cross-city through route into a bike-only highway. Mayor Anne Hidalgo, a bicycling advocate long before the pandemic, said that the idea of Paris returning to a car-dominated city is “out of the question.”

“I say in all firmness that it is out of the question that we allow ourselves to be invaded by cars, and by pollution,” said Hidalgo, according to CityLab. “It will make the health crisis worse. Pollution is already in itself a health crisis and a danger — and pollution joined up with coronavirus is a particularly dangerous cocktail. So it’s out of the question to think that arriving in the heart of the city by car is any sort of solution, when it could actually aggravate the situation.”

Brussels, the de facto capital of the European Union, is adding some 25 miles (40km) of bike lanes. “We know two-thirds of trips within Brussels are less than three miles. We want, then, to encourage healthy people to walk or to bike,” said transport minister Elke Van den Brandt to Belgium’s Le Soir newspaper. “And for that, it’s our responsibility to have secured infrastructures.”

In the US, a number of major cities have outlined plans to close streets to car traffic in an effort to provide safe space for socially distanced walking and biking. And some are going a step further by making them permanent.

Seattle recently announced that it would close 20 miles of streets to most traffic permanently. “[The pedestrianized streets] are an important tool for families in our neighborhoods to get outside, get some exercise and enjoy the nice weather,” Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said in a statement. “Over the long term, these streets will become treasured assets in our neighborhoods.”

In April, Oakland said it would begin gradually pedestrianizing roadways, with the goal of closing 74 miles to most vehicles or about 10 percent of the city’s streetscape. Denver has designated 13 miles of open streets, while Minneapolis set aside 18 miles for pedestrians and cyclists. Boston is considering using street space for bike lanes, wider sidewalks, and faster bus routes.

New York City, which has seen a dramatic drop in vehicular traffic, opened 12 miles of roadways to pedestrians this week and added nine more miles of protected bike lanes. That was in addition to the nine miles of roads that have been closed to cars since early May. NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, who is frequently criticized for his use of a city-owned SUV, has said his goal is for a total of 100 miles of open streets.

New York recently legalized electric bikes, which was a boon to immigrant food delivery workers who largely rely on e-bikes for work. New York City still needs to outline a regulatory scheme for the newly legal vehicles, but e-bike makers expect sales in the city to skyrocket for city-dwellers looking for speedy ways to get around without using public transportation or ride-share vehicles.

Biking has already exploded across the US since the lockdown went into effect, according to recent data. Eco-counter, which collects bike data, says that cycling is up 5 percent in North America compared to usual. Multiple regions in the US are up over 100 percent on weekends alone.

Meanwhile, vehicular traffic has plummeted, and the air is getting easier to breathe. There was a nearly 19 percent drop in vehicle miles traveled on all roads and streets in the US in March as compared to the same month last year, according to federal data. As noted by transportation researcher Yonah Freemark, that’s 50.6 billion fewer vehicular miles in March compared to the baseline. And with the average US fuel economy of 22.3 mpg, that’s around 45 billion pounds of CO2 that were not emitted, Freemark says.

It’s a remarkable transformation, but it could all be undone if cities aren’t bold in how they reimagine their streetscapes.

The VanMoof S3 in Amsterdam.
Photo by Thomas Ricker / The Verge

Amsterdam wasn’t always a world-class bicycle city. In the early 1970s, cars dominated the streets. It took years of fierce activism and enlightened policymakers unencumbered by the desires of entrenched automobile interests for the city to realize that cars weren’t the future of urban transport.

Now bikes permeate the culture, making them as Dutch as wooden shoes and tulips. Everyone from toddlers to the elderly enjoys the freedom and security of protected bike lanes and the byproduct of smog-free air. Yes, Amsterdam is flat, making it ideal for bicycling. But electric bikes can flatten a San Francisco hill like stay-at-home orders can flatten an infection curve.

Unfortunately, many of the COVID-19-era transportation measures being rolled out by cities are being done so timidly, often behind the guise of temporary change — under the assumption, perhaps, that the world will return to normal quickly after lockdowns are lifted. Verge readers will know, however, that that’s wishful thinking.

Or maybe it’s sly politics, easing inhabitants into a new urban transportation reality.

“If everyone goes back to cars, it will be a nightmare,” said Jean-Louis Missika, deputy mayor of Paris. “Our secret dream is that the temporary becomes permanent.”


Borderlands 3 PS5 and Xbox Series X versions announced for free



Borderlands 3 PS5

Borderlands 3 PS5 and Xbox Series X are coming with free next-gen upgrade !!

Isn’t it great? Yes, you heard right!!

Borderlands 3 is all set to take a huge jump as Gearbox Software also confirmed the news that Borderlands 3 will be available for PS5 and Xbox Series X very soon as it is under development right now.

Not only this, but there will also be an upgrade that will be freely available for all the gaming-enthusiasts who are on PS4 right now.

So there is no need to create panic PS4 gamers !!

Borderlands 3 PS5: When it Will Make Bang on Entry

  • Right now, it will be quite early to comment on its release date. But one thing that you can be stay assured about is that it will not be very late.
  • We can expect it anytime by the end of 2020 or at the beginning of the new year of which many are deliberately waiting as people have high hopes that 2021 will bring some positivity with it as 2020’s global pandemic has exhausted everyone.

What will happen to existing Borderlands 3 players?

There is a piece of good news for existing Borderlands 3 players, as existing Borderlands 3 players will be able to transfer their saves over to the enhanced PS5 and Xbox Series X versions at no extra cost.

Features of Borderlands 3 PS5 and Xbox X

Borderlands 3 PS5

  • Borderlands 3 runs at 60 frames per second and in 4K resolution on Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 in single-player mode.
  • Not only this but also Borderlands 3 is coming with 2 exciting features like Four-player split-screen, and the option to do vertical split-screen in two-player co-op.
  • You can divide your screen both horizontally as well as vertically in a two-player co-op.

Gearbox said Borderlands 3 PS5 players can expect more add-on content later in 2020.

These features mentioned above, especially the vertical split-screen, have been requested by the gamers for so long, It is now fulfilled by the makers of the game.

And goodies are not over yet !!

As it’s not just locked to the Borderlands PS5 and Xbox Series X versions. They will be added to current-gen versions in a patch at some point as well.

New DLC is Coming ???

Yes, there is another good news regarding Borderlands 3 PS5 and Xbox X series, New DLC is ready to come out very soon.

Borderlands 3 PS5: PAX Online presentation

The gearbox is all set to amaze its players with a complete set of new surprises. This new DLC isn’t part of the season pass but comes to a new game mode and the added bonus of a brand new skill tree for every single Vault Hunter.

  • It will be introduced with FL4K’s new skill tree.
  • Recently a teaser was released showcasing a new crowd-control based action skill called Gravity Snare, and a brand new companion- a Hyperion Loaderbot which made gamers elated to a great extent.
  • In case you don’t know then let us let you know that right now Borderlands is available for PC, PS4, Stadia, and Xbox One
  • And in the coming times, it will be available for PS5 and Xbox Series X versions as they are under the development phase right now.




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Only best India betting on well-tried 1xBet



The current football season offers its fans an ongoing intrigue that continues up to now. This makes it possible to place best India betting on well-tried, which generate a considerable income for football fans. Thus, fans of the English Premier League were recently shocked by the news that the disqualification of Manchester city had been cancelled, which automatically excludes those who on the 5th line of the standings from the Champions League.

Now, to qualify for the group stage of the most popular European tournament, teams have to finish the season within the TOP 4 of the standings. Unlike Liverpool and Man City that have already secured qualification for the Champions League, other challengers keep fighting actively. Even despite the fact that London Chelsea is currently ranked 3rd and Leicester 4th, the Red Devils are a potential challenger of these places. Solskjaer’s team still have plenty of time to overcome their opponents, which is strongly backed by the following factors:

  1. Acquisition of B. Fernandes. With this player, the Manchurians’ starting lineup has gained enough strength. From now on, the flank attacks have become more frequent, thus creating dangerous moments at the opponent’s goal.
  2. Decent performance of Rashford and Martial. In the second half of the season, these two strikers managed to demonstrate their skills to the maximum and score goals in almost every game.
  3. Motivation. Solskjaer has motivated the team so that they would return their name and prestige to the large arena of the Champions League.

Best betting on the upcoming games of the English Premier League is available to all residents of India on the well-tried website 1xBet.

You can make money on the game of Manchester United within the eSports direction as well due to well-tried bets on FIFA 20 cyber league on 1xBet. Only the highest coefficients are available here.

The best attested live casino from 1xBet

The well-known brand offers to give your gambling skills a try as well. In the corresponding section, you will find a wide range of casino games that are common for a real gambling parlour. The company has attested live casino from 1xBet, which is suitable for any category of players. If you want, you can place all entertainment right into your pocket using a special mobile app. Thus, you will be able to play at the live casino from attested company 1xBet almost anywhere where there is Internet access. All new players receive a welcome bonus of up to 100% of the first deposit — such a present will significantly increase your income!

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Smarty SIM only deals & Plans August 2020



Do you use Smarty SIM? Are you planning to buy a Smarty SIM? or do you want to know Smarty SIM-only deals & Plans August 2020? If yes, go through the article below and read all about Smart SIM.

Smarty is UK’s one of the finest brands for SIM purchase brands that provides incredible offers to its customers. Get all the data you need for less. SIM-only deals are rapidly gaining popularity. One of the choicest things about Smarty is that it does not tie users into a long term contract by offering handsets or very long-term plans. Rather, it offers a good collection of  SIM-only plans, all of which bundled with unlimited texts and calls.

Google has added many travel features to its platform for the convenience of travelers: Google is adding a new ‘free cancellation’ filter to only see hotels that offer this incentive.

Why Smart SIM only?

There are various reasons that force users to use SMART SIM only. it offers something different that you would not get on other telecommunications.

Heavy Discount on unused Data

This offer is just wow! Getting something you haven’t used! This is a “buys back” deal. Users get money at the rate of  £1 /GB of data for unused data of the previous month in the following month. So, if you have left with 5 GB of data in the month of June, you would get a discount of £5 on the billing of July.

Flexible Plans

Smarty SIM plans last for a month. So, users can change their plans every month according to their needs. Sometimes we need more data and sometimes less, so Smarty SIM provides flexibility to manage great deals for them.

Referring Scheme

Referring schemes exist with most of the apps and so does with Smarty SIM. When you signup on the website, you would be given a special link called “Refer a Freind” link. You can send invites to your friends by sharing the link. When your friend signup using the same link you would get a free month. The referred friend also gets a free month and a £10 Amazon voucher. Send as many invites as you want to. Remember, you get when your friend signup using the same link.

Data-ad ons

Run out of data sometimes? Do not worry! With Smarty SIM you can take data addons very easily at the cost of £1.25 per GB of data. moreover, Data ad-ons are for a lifetime, they do not have an expiry date.

Unlimited Calls

These days almost every firm offering unlimited call packs. but Smarty is providing unlimited texts and unlimited UK standard calls with all plans and this isn’t easy.

Use SIM on other devices

Smarty SIMs can be used in your existing phone, a new handset, tablets, dongles, laptops, wifi routers, and game consoles.

Smarty SIM only deals & Plans August 2020

1) Smarty Unlimited

  • Unlimited Data
  • Unlimited calls and texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £20 per month

2) Smarty 30 GB

  • 30 GB data
  • Unlimited calls and texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £10 per month

3) Smarty 1GB

  • 1 GB data
  • Unlimited calls and texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £6 per month

4) Smarty 2 GB

  • 2 GB data
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £7 per month

5) Smarty 3GB

  • 3 GB data
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £8 per month

6) Smarty 4 GB

  • 1 GB data
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £9 per month

7) Smarty 50 GB

  • 50 GB data
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £15 per month

8) Cheap SIM plan

This is for Lebara SIM only.

  • 2GB data
  • 1000 minutes and texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £5 per month

9) 5GB + data SIM

This is for iD Mobile

  • 10GB data
  • 1000 minutes and texts
  • Time Duration: 1 month
  • Price: £8 per month

10) Cheapest SIM only deal for Unlimited data

This is for Three SIM.

  • Time: 12-month contract
  • All-you-can-eat data
  • Unlimited calls and texts
  • Price: £18 per month

TRAI expresses concern over the use of Chinese equipment: No decision yet on Huawei and ZTE ban!!

Final Words

Well, readers, It’s all about Smarty SIM-only deals & Plans August 2020. I hope now you are out of confusion and can take a firm decision on which SIM to use. Time-to-time Smarty SIM offers the best deals to its users.

So, how do you like the article???

Share your feedback. Thank you!

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