We know all about connected cars by now, but what about the connected bike?
If you look down at your handle bars, you'll probably see a light, a bell of some kind. Maybe even your phone or a satnav of some sort. But none of it is connected, it's all disjointed and independent. And usually, it all looks pretty cluttered and ugly too.
This is where the ideas behind COBI began, from Founder Andreas Gahlert's distaste for his crowded handlebars. So, COBI is a connected bike system, fully integrated with your bike, and designed to merge cycling with the cyclist.
So, what does a day with COBI look like?
Wake up in the morning, and the proximity feature will detect you from a few meters away, starting up COBI with a flash of the lights before you even touch the saddle. Just plug your phone into the system, and you're away.
Once you set off, the turn-by-turn navigation with voice-over guides you, and the maps built into the app have 2D & 3D views. COBI recognises bike lanes and traffic to find you a good route, and it even has a Buddy Radar that'll find nearby friends. And when it gets you to your destination, you can lock it up and turn on the anti-theft systems, which link to your phone.
One of COBI's best offerings is the wireless light function. Auto Brake Light signals sudden stopping, Turn Signal highlights a change of direction to other traffic, and Auto Light adjusts the intensity of your bike lights to suit all situations. And it'll charge your phone.
The main point is - there's no need to take your hands off the handlebars. The directional thumb control can guide you through every menu and function of COBI, including working as a custom bell.
All in all, it's very promising, and due for release next summer if all goes well. Check out COBI in more detail if you're interested!
By Jessie Roseblade