This smart bike runs on Android, and can shoot frickin’ laser beams

In the near future, you could be riding a smart bike that shoots lasers out of each side. Except the beams aren’t there to carve through pedestrians like lightsabers as you zoom past, or vaporize cars, but for safety. In fact, they may end up keeping you from reaching your own gory end under the wheels of a massive truck. It’s just one of the cool features on the Le Super Bike, a carbon fibre or titanium framed bike that essentially has a smartphone built into the handle bars, giving it the same kind of connected capabilities we usually associate with a car. We got the chance to sit on the bike, try out the smart features, and yes, the laser beams.

The lasers are most useful at night, and activated automatically when the front and rear lights are turned on.

The lasers are most useful at night, and activated automatically when the front and rear lights are turned on. This is automatic too, thanks to an ambient light sensor on the handle bars. The laser beams paint a parallel line on the road running down either side of the bike, about two feet out from the pedals. The idea is this is the minimum amount of space the rider needs, and the beams help drivers judge passing maneuvers. Or, depending on how annoying a rider you are, a decent target at which someone will aim.

Le Super Bike is made by LeEco, formerly known as Letv, the giant Chinese company that impressed us earlier in the year with the Snapdragon 820 Le Max Pro smartphone. That’s not the device fitted into Le Super Bike’s handle bars, though; It’s much smaller and nowhere near as powerful. The screen measures 4-inches and while it runs Android, it’s covered in a custom UI, which disappointingly is called BikeOS and not Le BikeOS. We would have Le liked that better. It’s powered by a 1.3GHz processor and 4GB of RAM.

The phone shows a variety of details regarding road speed, navigation, and fitness statistics provided by sensors mounted underneath the hand grips. It also works as a music player — complete with a loud speaker to annoy the general public — and as a phone, thanks to a 4G connection. The screen is secured using a fingerprint sensor, which also locks the bike itself, and the whole thing is powered by a battery that can be charged using a battery pack, or when you’re cycling along thanks to the wheel-mounted power system. Next to each hand grip are thumb controls for the music volume, mode, and for little indicator lights fixed to the tips. Down by the rear wheel is a sensor for tracking pedal rotations.

Le Superbike
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

On the top tube of the bike (that bar that runs from the handle bars to under your seat) are three buttons: one for the front and rear lights; one for the power; and the other for a camera. This is an optional accessory that fits on the handlebars, and can be used to film your sweet jumps, or final moments. The camera can be removed for security, but the bike’s control screen is part of the frame, so you can’t take it out. The Super Bike’s wheels are automatically locked to prevent anyone riding away on it, but you’ll still have to use a lock and chain to stop it being carried away. There’s no chance of the wheels locking if the smart system runs out of power, or does so before you go to ride home from work, because the system ensures the wheels are unlocked a few minutes before the battery runs out.

LeEco already sells the Super Bike in China, where the standard model costs around $800, and Will Park, the company’s head of social and marketing, told Digital Trends the intention is to have a Super Bike on sale in the U.S. later this year, although there are no release details or prices yet. We can’t wait to give it a try on the road.

Emerging Tech

New brainwave reader tells teachers if students are concentrating

Massachusetts-based startup BrainCo has developed brainwave-reading headbands which can reportedly help reveal if students are concentrating in class. Here's how they're being used.
Buying Guides

Block the outside world, tune into your own with the best in-ear headphones

Over-the-ear headphones offer top-flight sound, but they're not so easy to take along with you. If you're looking to upgrade your portable sound, check out our favorite in-ear headphones -- there's a model for every user and every budget.
Cars

Add futuristic AR to your bike helmet with the Argon Transform

Singapore-based startup Whyre have a simple way to make any bike helmet smart, using an attachment which can overlay AR information on a helmet's visor. They showed off the Argon Transform at CES 2019 this year.
Emerging Tech

Look forward to your morning commute with one of the best ebikes available

A proper ebike is perfect for commuting or a trek along the trailhead, with most offering pedal assistance and a long-range battery. As more brands offer their own take on this innovative way to get around, it's hard to distinguish the…
Mobile

Sony is showing something off at MWC -- will it be the Xperia XZ4?

Sony may have released the Xperia XZ3 in the past few months, but already it's preparing to release a follow-up, the Xperia XZ4. We're learning plenty about the phone now some details have started to leak out, and it's getting exciting.
Home Theater

Set your ears free with the best completely wireless earbuds

If you can't stand the tangle of cords, or you're just excited about completely wireless earbuds, you're going to need some help separating the wheat from the chaff. Our list serves up the best true wireless earbuds around.
Mobile

Do these Geekbench results accurately represent the Moto G7?

The Moto G6 range is still relatively new to the market, but rumors have already started about the Moto G7, which is expected some time in 2019. Apparently, a G7 Power version will be joining the G7, G7 Play, and G7 Plus.
Mobile

Is this the first image of a Galaxy S10 being used in real life?

It won't be long now; With 2019 underway, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is almost here. Before it arrives, here's absolutely everything you need to know about all three of Samsung's next flagships.
Wearables

Omron HeartGuide brings blood pressure monitoring to your wrist

High blood pressure leads to heart attacks, strokes, and many other health problems, so it's important to keep an eye on. Omron's HeartGuide is a fitness tracking watch that can also monitor your blood pressure from your wrist.
Business

Google is buying mysterious smartwatch tech from The Fossil Group for $40 million

Google is about to step up its smartwatch game. The company has agreed to buy an unnamed smartwatch technology from The Fossil Group for a hefty $40 million. Considering the acquisition, it's clear Google is serious about smartwatches.
Mobile

Learn how to play YouTube in the background on iOS and Android

We show you how to play YouTube in the background with apps such as Opera, Chrome, and Firefox -- along with the premium offerings like YouTube Premium -- whether you have an Android or iOS device.
Mobile

Android vs. iOS: Which smartphone platform is the best?

If you’re trying to choose a new phone and you’re not sure about the merits and pitfalls of the leading smartphone operating systems, then come on in for a detailed breakdown as we pit Android vs. iOS in various categories.
Mobile

Verizon’s deal could get you a free iPhone XR — but there’s some fine print

Verizon launched a new deal for its smartphones aimed at encouraging customers to open a new line. If you're willing and you want two new phones, you could get a free Samsung Galaxy S9, iPhone XR, or Pixel 3.
Photography

From DIY to AAA, here's how to take a passport photo in 6 different ways

If you're applying for a passport or renewing one, you need to submit a photo in your official application. There are strict guidelines, but fortunately, it's something you can do at home. Here's how to take a passport photo.