BMW has revealed they’re working on a smart helmet with HUD technology.
The announcement of the new equipment came at the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show this week, and it’s a bold step forward for the company. Of course, this technology has been around for a while now; Skully’s smart helmet got a lot of hype when they were raising funds, and other companies have been working on it as well.
However, none of those companies are as big as BMW, and they don’t have the history of integrating new technology (like ABS) into a historically stodgy motorcycle industry. BMW has a long history of being innovators, and if anyone can popularize smart helmets, it’s them. It certainly helps that the technology is very appealing to the demographic who buys Beemers.
BMW’s other advantage is their ability to integrate the smart helmet with their vehicle-to-vehicle communication system they are developing, which could warn you of crashes or other dangers ahead. From the information they’ve given us so far, the helmet will have a display over your right eye with information like your speed or what gear you’re in. BMW’s photo also shows a warning of a construction zone, which implies some sort of GPS integration, although BMW hasn’t stated that yet.
The helmet is controlled from the left handlebar, meaning BMW owners now have even more buttons and switches to control if they buy the helmet. The helmet’s built-in computer is powered by two batteries with a lifespan of about five hours. That’s not very long from a touring perspective, but the batteries are able to be swapped out, so if you want to pull an Iron Butt, you can just bring along extras.
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