Smart helmets are populating the market. They all offer fancy features that seem to come straight out of science fiction movies — rear-view cameras and heads-up displays are but a couple of examples. Does this make motorcycle helmets better?
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The Quintessential Design team doesn’t believe so. This type of technology is on its early stages, and hence not trustworthy. It hasn’t evolved enough to really offer an onslaught of features without distractions. Now, what is a helmet if not safe?
In a phone interview with the Quin Helmet creator Anindith Reddy, we were told the team is not opposed to a heads-up display or other fancy elements, but they would prefer not to get involved until this technology has matured enough to keep users safe and the experience seamless. Much like Apple, Quin Helmets is taking tried-and-tested tech to make its product simpler, yet fuller. So, let’s take a look at what the Quintessential Design team come up with.
Are they good helmets?
These are helmets, first and foremost. I am not about to risk my life for a smart helmet that will crack after the first drop. The team knew they had to make a secure lid and they have accomplished it.
Quin has three models: the McQ, the Spitfire, and the Ghost — all of which come with DOT and ECE 22.05 certifications. Meanwhile, the Ghost model is also approved by AMA Pro Racing and CMRC.
In short, these helmets should be able to take a beating and keep your head safe.
Quin smart helmet features
We have told you Quin Helmets takes a more minimalist approach, but that doesn’t say much. Let’s run you through the set of features.
Of course, these helmets come with a built-in microphone, speakers, and Bluetooth connectivity. This means you can listen to navigation instructions, play music and make/answer calls.
One of the coolest features here is Google Assistant/Siri support, which can be activated with the press of a button. You could ask your digital assistant to do anything you want, from making calls and sending texts to important stuff like asking for Barack Obama’s height.
But what is it that makes this helmet smart, really? We have all seen Bluetooth connectivity baked into helmets (also pricey, by the way), and really any lid can get that functionality if you get a communicator (bulky and non-aerodynamic). Quin takes things to the next level with its safety features, which work along with their official app. These are called Intelliquin Crash and Intelliquin SOS.
Integrated sensors identify any force above 100G. Upon detection, the application will automatically contact preset emergency contacts, with an option to report to police and ambulance. There is an option to cancel this signal. Because, you know, we all drop our helmets from time to time. Failing to cancel the crash detection will send an SOS signal with GPS location details of your whereabouts.
Ever been chased by angry drivers? Maybe attacked? I know my girlfriend (who also rides) has, so this feature is gold. Bikers are often vulnerable, as we can’t hide behind the safety of car walls. Abuse, crime and harassment are just around the corner, and Quin has provided an awesome solution to keep peace of mind.
Pressing the SOS button for six seconds will send an alert to your emergency contacts. This will come with GPS location details. Additionally, the helmet will activate the Intelliquin Blackbox, which records ambient audio and lets your contacts get an idea of what could be going on in your surroundings.
Let’s talk money
All of this sure sounds expensive. I mean, competing helmets cost a pretty penny; usually well above $1,000. This is the part that will really give Quin Helmets the edge they need. You can get one of these helmets for as low as $240, if you pledge for the company’s Kickstarter campaign.
Of course, that would be for the McQ. For the Spitfire you will have to pledge $280, while the Ghost is going for $430. Now, those are prices we can get behind. Shipments begin this September, so there’s no need to wait around forever to get your helmet.
Interested? We will be arranging a review soon enough, so keep it tuned to Android Authority for more details to come!