Motorcycles

Smart motorcycle gloves promise better visibility for riders

Smart motorcycle gloves promis...
SignalWear Lane Changer gloves are designed with bright LEDs at the back of the glove to provide greater visibility
SignalWear Lane Changer gloves are designed with bright LEDs at the back of the glove to provide greater visibility
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SignalWear Lane Changer gloves are designed with bright LEDs at the back of the glove to provide greater visibility
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SignalWear Lane Changer gloves are designed with bright LEDs at the back of the glove to provide greater visibility
SignalWear LaneChanger gloves are activated by pressing the thumb and forefinger together
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SignalWear LaneChanger gloves are activated by pressing the thumb and forefinger together
SignalWear Lane Changer gloves can also be activated with a turn of the wrist
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SignalWear Lane Changer gloves can also be activated with a turn of the wrist

Rider visibility is an ongoing issue for those who prefer motorcycles as a means of transport. SignalWear is addressing the problem with the development of what it is touting as the first "smart" motorcycle gloves.

Created in response to a motorcycle accident experienced by company co-founder Troy DeBaca, SignalWear's Lane Changer gloves feature built-in LED turn indicators that are activated by pressing your thumb to your forefinger, palm or handlebars. Press again to turn them off. The gloves are also motion-activated, so a twist of your wrist bringing your hand vertical to the road turns on the LEDs – twist the other direction, and that turns them off.

Those features alone don't necessarily make the gloves smart, since there have been similar products – like the Zackees – which were instead aimed at cyclists.

The real smart elements of the Lane Changer gloves are actually features that will be included if the company reaches certain flex goals in its current Kickstarter campaign. One such element is called SignalBox, which allows each glove to blink when you toggle your motorcycle's turn signals. The addition of that feature will depend on the company meeting or exceeding a US$100,000 flex goal.

SignalWear LaneChanger gloves are activated by pressing the thumb and forefinger together
SignalWear LaneChanger gloves are activated by pressing the thumb and forefinger together

If SignalWear hits a flex goal of $250,000, it will also offer its patent-pending smart signal technology called Navigators – a heads-up, hands-free GPS navigation system that will sync the Lane Changer gloves to the company's SignalWear app. Input your destination in the app, and the gloves will vibrate and light up to guide you there. The app will also track your trip, so you can save it, send it or share it on social media.

SignalWear launched its KickStarter campaign earlier this month with a goal of raising at least $25,000. Early backers can pledge $99 for a pair of Lane Changers, which is a $50 savings off of the expected retail price. Delivery is estimated for August, providing the company meets or exceeds its fundraising goals.

To find out more about the SignalWear company and the Lane Changer gloves, take a look at the video.

Sources: SignalWear, Kickstarter

SignalWear Kickstarter Launch

3 comments
MerlinGuy
Another product from the Department of Redundancy Department. We have these things called turn signals. They do the same thing and the rider doesn't have to take his hands off of the bars. Won't work for Stop unless there are LEDs in the palm and that's supposing that most drivers have learned the antiquated turn signals.
tomtoys
Rider visibility certainly is an issue when most wear fluorescent black, not always easy to spot in certain conditions in daylight, and perfect camouflage at night. The same applies to many bikes. You want to be seen - wear reflective clothing, and make the machine visible too.
possum1
The rider at the top of the article certainly appears to be one of those "Loud Pipes Save Lives" types - ergo, with his life saving pipes, why does he need these gloves. For a long time bikes have been fitted with indicators, nice bright ones, that some folk replace with tiny dull ones in the name of 'customisation'. I agree with MerlinGuy, you are safer with both hands on the controls, not waving your arms about giving 'signals' that most modern drivers have never been trained to recognise. It is nice to see a rider doing a 'head check' before a lane change too.