We've built apps for electric scooter rental and bike rentals and gathered lots of experience in this field which we'd like to share today, as we believe that the future of transportation in cities is in this kind of apps (rather than Uber or Lyft).
The first thing that you need to know is that the most of the equipment out there that is used in such rental apps (including smart locks which could be placed on almost anything like regular old fashioned bikes or scooters) is build on open MQTT protocol. Except sharing apps, MQTT protocol is widely used in smart homes (IoT) as it's much faster and reliable (confirms the request is delivered) than HTTP.
- First tip: if the equipment that you consider is not MQTT based - search for another one. Yes, there are options based on XML and HTTP transfer protocols our there (especially for car sharing, as that's where they make things more complicated), but there are certain disadvantages with all of them (this question is worth a separate article, so feel free to contact if you want to know more technical details about the subject)