Mainstream non-motorcycle”click-bait” media has spread an incredible amount of misinformation about the KLIM AI-1 Airbag Vest.
We published an article last week and responded to many of the comments left on that article. I want to respond to the biggest concerns and the most commonly cited misconceptions about this system. I don’t believe KLIM or In&Motion deserve all of the criticism they have been receiving.
Even non-motorcycling Youtubers are pilling on for the clicks and the views, with almost no understanding of how the device works. Manufacturing outrage is cheap and profitable. Manufacturing a new class of high-tech safety devices, on the other hand, is hard.
The KLIM AI-1 Airbag Vest and In&Motion sensor box does not require a subscription, an internet connection, or your data being transmitted unless you chose that option. If the airbag is disabled, it is made obvious before a ride. It won’t be disabled during a ride unless the battery runs out. Our biggest issue is that In&Motion requires additional fees for adventure riding crash detection.
Are you paid hacks? No *sigh*
I know that defending a company opens us up to accusations of us being paid off, directly or otherwise. That is not the case. After the mainstream articles were published, Klim sent motorcycle press an email with their side of the story. This is normal public relations. I then called Klim to discuss the situation. At no point did we promise to write one article, let alone two, nor did Klim ask us to write about the situation. Before Klim emailing us, we were already putting an article together. We have not discussed this with In&Motion, nor have they reached out to us.
We are publishing a second article on this subject because we believe this is good technology. It is a technology that will save lives and will attract new riders to the sport, something the industry and the hobby desperately need in the West.
I can see parents agreeing to allow their teens to buy a motorcycle if they agree to wear the vest while learning to ride, maybe on the condition they pay for both the fuel and the airbag subscription. I can see adults willing to try motorcycling with an airbag vest when they otherwise would not have considered it.
Who is Klim and who is In&Motion, and what is an “In&Box”?
Klim is an American manufacturer of motorcycle and off-road gear. They manufacturer KLIM Ai-1 Airbag Vest. The KLIM Ai-1 Airbag Vest is equipped with an electronic sensor box called the In&Box, which is made by a French company called In&Motion. The KLIM Ai-1 Airbag Vest requires the In&Box to function.
Does the KLIM Ai-1 airbag vest, or the In&box, require a paid subscription? No.
No paid subscription is required for the KLIM Ai-1 airbag vest or the In&Box. The vest can be bought for $399.99 from Klim and the In&Motion sensor box (In&Box) can be activated for a one-time payment of $399.
So what about the paid subscription?
INSTEAD of paying a one-off payment, the In&Box can be instead leased for $12/month or $120/year. After 3 years a lease can purchase it outright for $99. If a customer paid an annual subscription for three years and then chose to purchase it, the total cost would be $459.
So you can either pay $399 once off with no subscription/lease fees, or $459 over three years followed by no fees.
You can choose to continuously lease the device, and if you do that In&Motion will provide hardware upgrades every three years at no extra cost and get unlimited warranty protection.
Again, this is optional. You don’t need to subscribe/lease. There are no major incentives to lease. Neither Klim nor In&Motion is pushing customers either way. Subscribe if you want what amounts to financing and hardware upgrades every few years, or don’t if you prefer to outright buy your equipment and save money.
Does ACTIVATING the airbag vest or In&Box require a mobile phone or require an internet connection? No.
This is likely the biggest misconception. You don’t need a mobile phone, nor does the In&Box need to connect to the internet to activate, regardless if it is a one-off activation or a subscription. The vest does not require an internet connection.
If you don’t believe me: here is the documentation for a Manual Activation.
If you had a subscription and chose not to use a mobile phone or wifi, you would need to do the manual activation regularly (monthly or annually), which would be annoying, but the option is there.
Does USING the airbag vest or In&Box require a mobile connection? No
The device does not require a mobile internet connection or mobile phone to function while riding.
Does UPDATING the airbag vest or In&Box require a mobile connection? Yes
Yes. A mobile phone or wifi is required to update the device with the latest firmware and the latest crash detection model.
What data is In&Motion collecting and what is transmitted to In&Box? GPS & Riding Data.
This is a controversial point. The In&Motion does log riding information, including GPS, and if connected via the mobile app and permission is given, it will transmit that information.
Using the In&motion airbag vest, the system collects and stores the following data in the In&box:
Motion data collected by an inertial measuring unit: accelerometers and gyroscopes
• Speed and geolocation using GPS
• Other data such as time and date
• Data on the operation of the software
The transfer of this data requires your permission. If you have given this authorization, this data is uploaded and stored on In&motion’s servers.
The information is anonymized and can only be de-anonymized by specific personal for specific reasons. The developers and engineers building new detection models won’t know whose data they are looking at.
Can I request my information to be deleted? Yes
You own and control all your personal information. In accordance with the regulations in force, you have the right to access, rectify, oppose and delete your data.
Does In&Motion guarantee the security of this data? Not while it is being transmitted.
We will store all personal information you provide on secure servers. You acknowledge that the transmission of information over the Internet is inherently risky, and we cannot guarantee the security of data sent over the Internet.
Do I benefit from the data collected? Yes
Unlike the controversial data collection practices of “Big Tech” organizations like Facebook, the information being collected is being used to provide better safety for you. You directly benefit from the data collected in the form of updated crash detection software.
The data collected contributes to the continuous improvement of our detection systems as well as to the improvement and personalization of your customer experience with the various In&motion interfaces such as our website or mobile applications.
The company says that they do not sell your data, nor provide it to third parties (ie. for advertising). You send data, they send you updates. This applies even if you buy the device outright. Paying once for free updates during the device’s lifetime is a good deal.
Will the device stop working mid-ride if the subscription runs out? No
No, the device will not turn off mid-ride. If it is enabled at the start of a ride, it will continue to work until it turns off.
How easy is it to determine if a subscription runs outs before a ride? Easy
You have a 30 day grace period after a subscription runs out, and multiple notifications from In&Box, but failing that two bright LEDs will flash red. The LEDs are supposed to be checked before each ride because they could indicate other issues with the device such as a low battery.
I don’t care about any of this, I just hate subscriptions and data collection!
No problem, you don’t need to share data, nor subscribe (see above questions and answers).
I want new crash detection model data but I don’t want to share my information?
This is not an option. Better crash detection models require user data. It seems fair that to benefit from other users, you need to share your own data.
Ok, but what about the EXTRA subscription payment required for Adventure Riding crash detection? hmmm…
I really do not understand why In&Moation wants additional fees ($8/month) for adventure riding. They are not doing themselves any favors in the adventurer riding community.
If I were to guess, I think they might argue that building a crash detection model for niche riding is not cheap and the subscription helps fund the R&D. They collected data from Dakar 2021, for example, and it this would not have come cheap.
I personally feel, my personal opinion not that of ADVrider is that adventure riders are contributing data to In&Motion, which will help them sell more devices. Riders should not have to pay extra AND send in their adventure riding data.
Do you believe the Klim and In&Motion model is fair? Yes
I do believe it is fair. For these reasons:
- The subscription is optional, you can own it outright AND get free updates.
- It does not require an internet connection (but a connection if beneficial).
- It is an optional safety system, and you are given many warnings that the subscription needs to be topped up.
- Other safety systems, like satellite GPS trackers, require a subscription, even for the SOS button functionality.
- Riding is inherently less safe and requires greater attention to safety, checking the vest to ensure it is activated is not t a big burden.
- This system is not comparable to IoT or “Big Tech” as the media have been comparing it to. It works offline and you don’t need to send any data to In&Motion if you don’t want to benefit from the data collected by the community of In&Motion users.
While the system may not be perfect, I don’t think it deserves the hate it has been getting online and in the mainstream press. I think overall it is well throughout the system. That said, I am strongly against In&Motion charging extra for Adventure Riding modes. This makes little sense to me and I hope In&Motion will reconsider its stance on this. I applaud Klim and In&Motion for advancing motorcycle safety.
Lastly, to get the perspective of real-world adventure riders who are using the system, head over to the forum where it is being discussed.