Motorcycle gloves put navigation on the back of your hand
If you want GPS-enabled navigation on your motorcycle, you can of course just mount your smartphone (or a dedicated device) on the handlebars. According to Atlanta-based biker Steven Friedlander, however, trying to look at that little screen while riding isn't an ideal setup. His alternative? Gloves that'll show you where to go.
Friedlander's TurnPoint Smart Glove system consist of a right-hand glove that's normal, along with a left-hand glove featuring conductive thread and a pocket on the back. That pocket accepts a removable Bluetooth LE device, that wirelessly communicates with a map app on the user's paired smartphone – the phone can be stuffed in a pocket, bag or wherever. The app is currently iOS-only, although an Android version is planned.
When a turn is approaching, the Bluetooth device's LEDs will light up to show how far away that turn is (in half-mile increments, up to four miles), and then indicate the direction of the turn. Riders can also manually check how far away the next turn is, simply by pressing the thumb and forefinger of the glove together. This activates the LED display on the device, regardless of how soon the turn is coming up.
In future versions of the product, pressing the thumb to other fingers may activate additional features such as a compass or battery level display – speaking of which, one charge of the battery should reportedly be good for about eight hours of use.
Steven is currently raising production funds for the TurnPoint system on Kickstarter, where a pledge of US$149 will get you a set of the gloves. Even if everything works out, delivery isn't expected until next January. The estimated retail price is $249.
You can see the technology in use, in the video below.