Not sure about this one. Yes, it’s cool and yes it’s clever – and yes someone was bound to make one. But I’m still not sure if it’s more of a distraction than anything else.
What am I blithering on about? It’s a crash helmet smothered in cameras and tech to provide an in-helmet heads-up-display that shows all kinds of ‘essential’ information as you ride. It’s called the Skully AR-1.
As you can see from the diagram below, there’s a rear-facing camera, bluetooth for internet connectivity via a smartphone, and some clever visual display gubbins that seems to project data onto a ‘transparent’ screen offering infinity focus, presumably meaning you don’t have to refocus your eyes away from the road to see what’s on the screen. There’s also voice control and an electronically tinting visor. It looks seriously cool too. From that list, I reckon even Robocop will be on the waiting list!
Looking at Skully’s website, it seems the helmet’s still in development and there’s a ticker showing the amount of funding sourced via crowdsourcing. So whether it makes it to retail is anyone’s guess.
However, the big question in my mind is will it add to the riding experience or be a distraction – possibly even a very dangerous distraction. Yep, I can see a benefit of having GPS directions displayed from time to time, but much else might well take your eye off the road. I guess we’ll have to wait and see. It looks like Skully is being developed by some bright people who love biking, so let’s give them the benefit of the doubt for now.
I’d love to get my hands on one to find out, though at around $1400 dollars a pop, I reckon it’s pretty unlikely. If you do get to try one, do let us know what you think.
Due out May 2015.
Check out the video. They’re very earnest aren’t they. Particular highlight is the man calling it an Ecosystem.