LATACO was contacted by Alienboard to give a review of their balance board, the Batwing 1. Yes, this thing is a (bluetooth enabled) hoverboard. On the streets of downtown Los Angeles I see them everywhere. From high schoolers to businessmen. The hot item from this past Christmas is not losing its appeal as it is still the must have item.
I myself am not able to ride this machine with much confidence. I kept think I was going to fall forward or backward as those famed IG fail videos (click here). Giving it much thought, I decided to hire my 12 year old nephew Jacob to break in this new item. Jacob is a hoverboard pro. His only request from this past Christmas was a hoverboard. From what I've seen, Jacob has mastered the hoverboard. He moves and turns so smoothly. Reminds me of that Glen E. Friedman photo of Jay Adams on his skateboard from the early skate days in Venice.
Jacob and I charged the balance board and start making comparisons to the one he already owns. I will not say what brand or company but it's a very hot item on OfferUP. Jacob immediately notices the footing on the board. It's has more real estate. His eyes light up with anticipation. It charges up in a little over two hours which he tells me is standard. We proceed to head over to the local high school parking lot to let him give it a try.
Jacob is nervous about riding it. He looks excited and anxious to try something new. Jacob immediately gets on the balance board with ease. I mean it's laughable. I tried riding it but was moving in a jerking motion. Jacob is moving swiftly thru the parking lot. He says the movement on the balance board is way better then his current ride. It stops much better too. He's making figure 8's forward and backward. As he speeds up to meet me he starts to hear is a beeping sound. Apparently it tells you if your going too fast. That's smart.
As he get comfortable with the wheels I suddenly remembered about the Bluetooth feature on the balance board. I reached for my phone to give it try. It's connects quickly. Turned it up. Its loud but not super clear when the sound is maxed out. As Jacob starts to requests songs I tell him to go ahead of me to see how far the signal will carry. It starts to interrupt a good 30 - 40 feet, about a half a basketball court length. The kid's in hover heaven just listening to music and rolling thru the parking lot.
I can see the appeal. It looks like fun and if I was 20 years younger I would be on that balance board. Gone. Rolling the streets til the battery dies on me. Charge. Ride. Repeat. It can only get you so far and you'd still have to use the bus or train to get where you really need to go. It definitely can't substitute a bike. That said, it is a fun novelty to just have and laugh with friends to see who can actually ride it.
If you want your own, check out these hoverboard for sale from Alien Wheels. Use code "lataco" and get a $100 off your order!
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