The Bitcoin network has many users which makes it slow for transactions and even expensive. However, developers came up with the Lightning Network for more scalability. Already, there are many use cases for the network. In particular, an e-bike that supports lightning transactions is the latest.
According to a description on github, the lightning-bike is a “pedelec” where users can book its electrical support momentarily. In particular, the user can book the electrical support for 1 minute or more. Interestingly, the electrical support is quite cheap, at 250 satoshis per minute. This translates to about a few cents of dollars.
Users to get electrical support on e-bike that supports lightning transactions
Per the description, the whole process begins with a payment on a lightning system. In particular, the system contains a display which acts as the user interface. On the display, one selects the preferable time span. After the selecting the time for electrical support, the device displays a QR code on the screen. The user can now scan and pay via satoshis.
Interestingly, the whole process can easily be accomplished via any lightning mobile applications. Immediately after the process completes, the power for the selected period comes on. Another interesting feature of the system is that the bike comes with a battery.
In particular, the battery powers a Raspberry Pi controller which controls the digital display. The display is an e-Ink type to keep power consumption low. Developed by Mathias Steinig, the only power intensive component of the bike system is the network card. The card links to the Lightning Network which now connects the bike to the mobile network.
Interestingly, the concept behind the bike is to use it for hire. The bikes for hire are one innovation that is gaining currency. As the BBC reports, the explosion of the bikes and scooters for hire are rivalling Uber and its ilk.
As far as the Lightning Network goes, this is the second real-world application since the coca cola dispenser. Ricardo Reis, a Brazilian hacker, developed a vending machine that runs on Lightning Network. In particular, users can get soda in exchange for Bitcoin.