Published on April 20th, 2019 | by Jennifer Sensiba0
An Electric Bike That Reads Your Mind?
April 20th, 2019 by Jennifer Sensiba
Xmera recently started a new ad campaign on Facebook for an electric bike (e-bike) that uses wrist sensors and an EEG helmet to read your mind for easy control and customized workouts. After years in development, the bicycle is set to go live for crowdfunding next month.
While the Xmera bike first appeared in public at CES 2019 in January, the new ad campaign releases a lot more detail about how it works, tech specs, and possible user benefits. While it has a design typical of many urban e-bikes today, it sets itself apart with a suite of sensors that promise to control the bike’s lights, horn, signals, and electric pedal assist to help with either workouts or easier commutes.
They first introduce prospective buyers to the EEG helmet with “real time brainwave feedback.” Machine learning programs process raw data from multiple sensors in the helmet to get an idea of what your current state is for exercise assistance either for high intensity interval training (HIIT) or for steady-heart-rate exercises.
The helmet also is supposed to allow the rider to intuitively control the bike’s accessories with mental effort alone.
The included bracelet promises to do much of the same as the helmet, but by reading heart rate and by detecting subtle finger and arm movements to allow for user customizable gesture controls for all of the bike’s functions.
Based on my research for my April Fools article about Neuralink, this certainly seems possible. The amount of data that can be gleaned from a crude EEG helmet is low, but is definitely enough for basic commands. Several research teams have even managed to drive a car with scalp EEG sensors, so controlling basic functions is definitely feasible.
Either way, this is definitely an innovative mix of technologies that would be great to see work as advertised. We look forward to working with Xmera in the future, and hope to get our hands on one for a thorough review. (Cough, cough.)
As far as e-bikes go, this bike is fairly good, but not terribly powerful. The motor assist is rated at 250 watts, from a 36 volt Samsung battery. Top speed is advertised as 16 MPH, with a range of “up to 25 miles.” While many other bikes are more powerful and advertise higher top speeds for assist, the Xmera may be more aimed at fitness and exercise than commuting, but could be reasonably competent at getting the rider to work and back, depending on their needs.
A timeline on the bottom of the page shows the bike’s development history and indicates that crowdfunding on Indiegogo will go live sometime next month. To get alerts, the page has a signup link, but as usual, be sure to follow CleanTechnica both here and on social media for the latest!