One of the first pieces of technology to go viral because of how fun it looked in all the videos. Not technically a hoverboard, but it does make it seem like the rider is gliding as the self-balancing mechanism keeps them stable. Initially, made famous on social media by rapper/singer Chris Brown.
Pros & Cons
Can fall and injure oneself
Low-quality devices can catch fire
Journey of the hoverboard
The Hoverboard a cultural marker of the original viral generation seen in Instagram posts from a host of celebrities, making it a hit product of 2015. Originally designed in China but a little hard to trace exactly who created it, some sources claim that Chic Robotics was the first to produce them. Now there are probably more than a dozen brands with slight variations in design and of course the internal and external build, which also affects the prices. The more expensive ones have better electric motors and longer-lasting batteries.
General specs and features
On average they move at the speed of 5 to 15 KPH, some brands can go faster than this too but naturally, this does also depend on the weight of the rider. Usually, on a single charge, a hoverboard can be ridden for roughly 11 KM which is a substantial distance for something of its size. Wheel size also affects how it rides, larger wheels help with slightly rougher terrain but they generally are safer on a smooth surface. Some come with extra bells and whistles like LED lights and Bluetooth speakers. Some of the more well-known makers are Phunkeeduck, Razor and IOHAWK.
How to ride one
Learning to ride one can be a little tricky and the chances of falling are plenty. Initially even getting on one is a rocky experience usually done by holding on to something or someone. Once you are on it, shifting your weight forward by leaning a little makes it go forward and leaning backwards makes it go in a reverse direction. To turn on the spot or turn while already headed in a direction is probably the more challenging bit as you have to tilt one foot forward and one a little backwards. The foot tilting forward is the side that leads the turn. The balancing act while doing all this tilting is where it's at.
Available at various prices given the brand and quality.