Lost your keys? Sure you have, you absent-minded fellow you. And you iPhone? No frickin; way, right? What you clearly need is a way to replace your keys with your iPhone. That’s already been done for the home, and now you can toss the keys for your bike lock.
You should really stop reading here and check out the video of the FlyKly Smart Wheel, which is utterly hilarious. In i you’ll see an urban-warrior type taking his bike up into his beautifully-designed apartment and swapping out his back wheel for the FlyKly. This is fine, until you see him lowering the monstrosity into the rear dropouts of his frame.
The big, ugly plastic wad at the wheel’s center reminds me of nothing so much as generic prosthetic limbs: paint this thing ‘skin’ color and you’ll be done.
However, it’s this wad which holds the key to the FlyKly’s mysterious iPowers.
While we’re all looking over here at the big, bulky, ruggedized mounts that let us carry our iPhones on our bike handlebars, over there in Austria they’re making a minimal mount that you can leave on the bike or carry in your pocket. It’s called the Finn, and according to at least two of my German friends, it’s excellent.
Ever tried using an iPhone or Android phone to navigate with GPS through crowded streets? It’s pretty difficult, even for a veteran cyclist like me, to split my focus between the road and tiny symbols on the phone’s tiny screen.
Plugging in to a headset to hear turn-by-turn directions sometimes works, but cycling with headphones can also be a pain (not to mention illegal in places under certain conditions).
The answer, of course, is a heads-up display like Google Glass; but until it’s ready, there’s the Hammerhead, a light-powered navigation aid with some other cool tricks up its sleeve.
UPDATE [We said the case is available for the iPhone 5, which it isn’t.]
BikeConsole addresses the single biggest problem with using your iPhone as your in-bike computer: battery life. The iPhone clearly makes for an awesome brain for your bike, with maps, GPS and all manner of bike and fitness apps available, but leaving it running up there with the GPS and screen burning is a great way to kill your battery, fast.
So the BikeConsole does the obvious thing: it adds a battery.
Goal Zero’s new Lighthouse 250 Lantern and USB Power Hub is a camper’s best friend. By day, it’s a USB charger with a backup battery, ready for juicing your waning iPhone. By night, it’s a lamp which will run for up to 48 hours.
Wahoo, known for making sports-tracking accessories that hook up to your iPhone and turn it into a bike/running/fitness computer, has finally made a bike mount for your trusty outboard brain. It’s called the PROTKT, and it puts your iPhone up on your handlebars whilst making sure it stays safe.
Komoot (like commute, only not) is a gem of an app for German bikers and hikers. Or rather, it was: with today’s v5.2 update, the navigation app now comes in English, and adds support for a slew of new countries.
The short form: If you ever take to two wheels, then you need this app.
Spinlister is like Airbnb for bikes. Instead of renting some piece-of-junk city bike for exorbitant rates while you’re on a city vacation, you can instead rent a hipstermobile from a private individual. For—it seems—equally exorbitant rates. And you can of course make some extra cash in your home town renting out your own spare steed.