New technology could revolutionize bicycles

A local team has figured out how to put some power behind your bike's pedals.
October 18, 2013 6:46:17 PM PDT
This year has seen a flood of new electric bicycles hitting the market and they're all somewhat expensive.

But now, a local team has figured out how to put some power behind your pedals for a lot less cash. It's called FlyKly.

"Right here we have the battery. And inside here is the motor, and then also here are the electronics," said FlyKly Niko Klansek.

This is not an electric bike. It's an ordinary bike with an out-of-the-ordinary accessory.

"It has the battery, the motor and all the electronics inside the rear wheel. And it helps you pedal,"

Klonshek has gone and built something that scholars at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have been envisioning for years, a smart bicycle wheel that turns your existing bike into an electric one, for about $600. One people can control from their smartphone.

The wheel comes with an LED light that charges your phone while you ride. And just like a hybrid car, it charges itself when you use the brakes going downhill.

Kly stands, in Greek stands for constant energy. And fly is just on the go, good looking. So constant energy on the go," said Klansek.

But what makes the smart wheel truly smart isn't just how it uses power but also how it uses data, especially the data from the smart bicycle wheels being used throughout the same city.

"We want to make cities more livable and more people-friendly, not car-friendly," said Klansek.

So Flykly will let you share data from the sensors built into the wheel to help other users find the flattest and quickest routes. With enough people's help, the creators hope to build entire maps of how to bike around cities.

"Also with this data, we want to share it with the city officials so that they know where to put the new bicycle lanes," said Klansek.

But the wheel's built-in GPS has a more immediate use.

"Whenever you park it and you just walk away, you can click lock and it will lock the wheel," said Klansek.

Klansek uses his Pebble smartwatch to enable something even most cars don't have.


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