I know what you bike nuts are thinking. You’re jealous of all the hue-controlled lighting available to the stay-at-home folks, and you want a little bit of that color-changing action for your ride. Well, the folks at Helios have heard you, and are just about to launch a couple of crazy handlebars with built-in LEDs. And that’s not all they do. Oh no…
There will be two designs, a ribcage-skewering bullhorn and a weird-looking drop, which appears to have taken its shape from sci-fi movies rather than trying to be comfortable to use.
Both bars have LEDs incorporated in the stem-clamp section, firing 500 lumens out at the traffic. They also have rear facing lamps on the ends of the bars, which can be used as turn signals or – via color-coded changes – as a “visual speedometer.”
Why is this product here, on this Apple-centric website? Because the lights can be controlled from a companion app on your iPhone, which will change their color and do anything else the makers decide. What could e safer than hurtling down the highway, two-ton blocks of steel and glass just inches from your soft human body, and tapping away at the screen of an iPhone to tune the color of your in-bike lighting?
Speaking of safety – or rather security – the bars also come fitted with a GPS unit which lasts for up to 15 days on a reserve battery and can be pinged from your iPhone for tracking purposes thanks to a SIM slot that can be loaded with any old pre-pay SIM.
I certainly like the idea of integrated lights in the bars, because they’re harder to steal and always ready to connect. Yeah, so you have to charge the handlebar now. So what? You have to charge your lights anyway. But the whole diphone part seems a little gimmicky. What next? In-bike cup holders? Wait…
The Helios will launch soon, and cost around $200.