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China's Mobike sharing service rolls into Japan

Municipalities getting on board as app-based system may ease congestion

Mobike's smartphone app lets users locate idle bicycles nearby. The app also handles payments automatically.

SHANGHAI -- A fast-growing Chinese bicycle-sharing startup looks to debut in Japan next month, with plans to operate in roughly 10 major cities by the end of the year in cooperation with local governments.

Mobike launched its service just last year in Shanghai, and the company now commands 5 million bicycles across China. The secret of its meteoric success lies in the use of smartphones.

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