No longer just tough shells for your noggin, the humble bicycle helmet has recently been kitted out with turn signals, walkie talkies, blind spot detection systems and bone-conduction speakers. Now an Australian startup called Cyclevision has revealed the Edge, a helmet sporting front- and back-facing cameras to let riders watch for danger or record their adventures.
Both of the Edge's cameras capture the world in Full HD at 30 frames per second, and each wide-angle lens can see 160 degrees, giving a combined 320-degree field of view. Footage is stored on twin 32 GB flash memory cards, which the team says is enough for about four hours of video. As the storage fills up, the helmet will automatically start overwriting the oldest footage, giving users plenty of time to save the bits they need.
The footage can be moved from the helmet's internal storage to a computer through the micro USB slot. That's also used to recharge the 3,200-mAh battery, which Cyclevision says has a life of between 2.5 and three hours per charge.
The Edge helmet can also connect to an iOS or Android device via Wi-Fi and an app. That lets users livestream video from either camera, making for a digital rear-view "mirror" if you stream it to a device mounted on the handlebars.
The creator of the Cyclevision Edge, Rob Asker, says he came up with the idea after several hit-and-run incidents while cycling. With a clear focus on safety, the livestream mode can help riders react to cars and other dangers behind them, and if something does go wrong the incident will be recorded for legal purposes. Of course, it's not all business though – as the GoPro boom shows, sometimes you just want to share a good ride.
Cyclevision is far from the first company to cram a camera into a helmet, and we've even seen dual-camera setups like Nand Logic's Smart Helmet, and integrated 360-degree cameras before, like in BRG Sports' 360fly helmets. The Edge does look like the first bicycle helmet to give a rear-view livestream – although this tech has been in motorbike helmets for years.
Cyclevision is currently seeking funding for the Edge helmet on Kickstarter. So far, the project has made about US$4,000 of its $80,000 target, with 28 days remaining on the campaign. Early Bird pledges start at about $350 for the helmet, and if all goes to plan, the Edge should ship in July this year.
See the helmet in action in the campaign video below.
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