Check this out, battle-weary commuters: a new bike helmet from Australia promises to record on camera nearly everything that happens around you as well as streaming a live rear-view display to your handlebar-mounted smartphone.
Its makers claim an impressive 320 degrees of high-definition coverage, thanks to a front and a rear camera embedded in the helmet. It’s not for sale yet – after 14 months of development, the Cyclevision team are now finalising manufacturing contracts, and preparing to put it through the major certification standards (Australian, New Zealand, USA, North America, UK and European).
They hope to send us a test sample by July of this year – we’re looking forward to getting our hands on one, and seeing what our video team can create with it.
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Fully integrated solution
The Cyclevision helmet certainly looks svelte in the shots we've been sent
So why’s this a better idea than existing helmet cams? Well, this is a fully integrated solution that combines two cameras within a helmet, for an impressive weight of around 280 grams. Video is recorded at 1080p at 30 frames per second, and the system also captures audio to the supplied 32 Gb micro SD card.
Footage is recorded on a 4.5hr loop, so if the user doesn’t download it from the micro SD card to their computer then it will simply overwrite the old data. The helmet’s internal battery has been designed to provide up to 5hrs of continuous recording, and is recharged by USB cable.
“This vehicle is reversing”
Here's a look at the rear-facing camera
The Cyclevision helmet can also stream video from the rear camera onto a handlebar-mounted smartphone, like a fancy executive saloon. Now we’re not convinced of the wisdom of looking down and watching rear-camera footage while riding, but the idea is that you can see just how close that kamikaze driver is getting, and take evasive manoeuvres if needed.
This idea has already been developed for motorcycles under the Skully helmet system, which delivers rear-view vision and a heads-up display for around $1,499. Cyclists already have heads-up displays from Garmin and Recon Jet, and Oakley has revealed that it's working on smart glasses called Radar Pace that can report your speed, power and more.
Here's the Poison Pink version. It's bright.
Due to the complexity of the helmet build, the Cyclevision team say it will be priced higher than a standard cycling helmet – but we guessed that already.
“Cyclevision fully realises exactly where we want our price point to be and will be doing our damnedest to keep the helmet retail sales price within easy reach of all cyclists serious about providing some real protection for themselves (and ultimately their families and loved ones) as they take to the roads and trails.”
Stay tuned for more info on this, we'll be updating this story with pricing info soon, and getting a test sample in for review this summer.