While smart cars have enjoyed smart technology — i.e. crash alerts, keyless entry, sophisticated security systems — for quite some time, our bikes haven’t been so lucky. But that all changes with the unveiling of Ellipse. In addition to the debut of its smart lock, Lattis showed off its Bike Share Platform, which will make it easier for various organizations to build and maintain bike fleets for substantially less than most bike-sharing businesses cost.
“With the debut of Ellipse and the Lattis Bike Share Platform, the company enters the bike industry with the goal of transforming how bicyclists use and share bikes,” said Jack Al-Kahwati, founder and CEO of Lattis. “Ellipse’s security and sharing capabilities have given us the flexibility to create a platform with an entirely customizable commercial bike share experience for both operators and bike share members.”
So what’s so special about this bike lock? The secret, it would seem, lies in the device’s Bluetooth technology and its state-of-the-art accelerometer, which work in tandem to help users avoid theft and crashes. The smart lock will alert you if someone tries to make off with your bike — assuming you’re within 800 feet of your vehicle — and it comes with a dual-locking mechanism that’s designed to protect both sides of the U-lock . And while you need to keep the Ellipse charged in order to take advantage of its Bluetooth capabilities, it can actually charge itself thanks to a built-in solar panel that converts a single hour of sunlight into a week of use. Moreover, if you leave your locked bike in the sun for 12 hours, you’ll net around six months of use.
The lock’s anti-theft properties are only one part of the equation, though. Should you get in an accident while riding an Ellipse-equipped bike, the device’s ability to detect severe impacts and automatically send GPS coordinates to your friends and family via text will help keep you safe, even if you’re alone.
Because of this connectivity, Lattis believes its Bike Share Platform will create a simpler, more cost-effective solution to communally-owned bikes. Thanks to the security provided by the Ellipse, the company thinks it can create a high-security option that’s easy to manage and utilize without exuberant fees. The new platform is expected to roll out within the first half of the year, though the Ellipse is available as of today for $199.
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