Segway is a leader in personal, green transportation. However, it is now facing a big threat from Solowheel, the world's first single wheel-drive, battery-operated, self-balancing personal transportation to hit the market.
Solowheel boasts of a gyroscopic electric drive system that self-balances, making steering and control intuitive and unbelievably simple. The gyroscope sensors also allow the vehicle to accelerate and decelerate, as well as move forward and backwards.
Solowheel runs on 1000 Watt motor, can hit a top speed of 10 mph and the Li-ion battery can be fully recharged in 2 hours.
The vehicle is lightweight, can be used on different terrains and is the perfect replacement for a car for short distances.
So if you're looking to reduce pollution, avoid the traffic and save on gas costs, Segway isn't the only device in the market.
Now the billion dollar question is - should Segway be afraid? Solowheel is no doubt lighter than Segway (26lbs versus 105 lbs) and cheaper too - Segway's cheapest model, the i2, retails for $6,200 while Solowheel has a price tag of $1,800. It also takes shorter time to charge Solowheel's battery than it does to charge Segway's.
However, Solowheel is slower than the Segway (Solowheel can hit a top speed of 10 mph while Segway's top speed is 12.5 mph), can travel shorter distance than the Segway on a single battery charge (15-20 miles versus 24 miles on Segway i2) and unlike the Segway, as the Solowheel has only one wheel, the Solowheel rider needs to balance himself/herself (the same way one would balance himself/herself on a unicycle or a bicycle).
However, balancing is much easier than it looks, according to Inventist, the maker of Solowheel.
Synthesizing gyroscope technology and modern design, the Solowheel challenges contemporary notions of electric vehicles, company spokesperson Karli Rizzo said.
In conclusion, if you want to do your bit for Mother Earth but don't want to burn a deep hole in your wallet, go for the Solowheel. You won't regret it.
Note: Unlike Segway, the Solowheel can only be purchased in the U.S. directly through the Web site www.Solowheel.com. The company doesn't have exclusive retailers carrying the Solowheel yet!