After years of tiny advances, this year has seen a big growth in helmet technology.
On the safety front, Mike has described the MIPS technology, a new kind of armor that slips on impact and reduces the load on the skull (and thus the brain.)
The Plymouth, Minnesota company makes a helmet that’ll send distress signals in two different ways.
The first is a crash detector. Each Quin helmet has a built-in accelerometer. If it detects an impact
of 100 G or more that exceeds their parameters for speed, rapid deceleration and peak g-force, it’ll automatically send out a SOS signal and your location (using GPS coordinates) to your preset contacts, be they first responders or friends and family.
This doesn’t happen on its own, though. The helmet collects the accelerometer info via its custom built-in Quin Arc Chip. The chip then sends a message to your smartphone using Bluetooth. And yes, you need an app for that. It’s the appropriately named Quin app. You use it to list your contacts and settings.
Which means that for this system to work, you need to be in range of a cell tower that’ll relay your signal.
But that’s not all.
Quin helmets will also let you send a SOS signal without having crashed. Again, you need the app, but you can trigger an alert manually.
How safe are the helmets? Quin says they’re manufactured in China at the same facilities that make more famous brands. Depending on the model (they have three in production right now) they’ll have either both DOT and ECE certification or just an ECE certification. ECE means that it meets “FIM and AMA racing standards.”
Quin had (has?) a Kickstarter campaign but deliveries had been delayed. Just today, they announced that the first ones had shipped, so they’re now up and running.
Prices range from $300 to $540 (Kickstarter contributors got a big discount.)