Pinwheel Battery-Powered Unicycle Is Segway In Your Price Range

It's the Pinwheel from Shenzhen's TOPJOY, and it's a Segway in your price range. And now the video.

(Pinwheel Battery-Powered Unicycle video)

As you'd expect, it's all about balance -- stand straight to stop, lean forward to move forward, back for reverse and so on. You can travel at up to 22 kilometers per hour (about 14MPH) on this guy, but you better know what you're doing before you attempt to move that fast. Turning's a bit difficult, too, especially if your parallel-parking skills are a bit iffy...

The Pinwheel's real appeal is its portability; it weighs about 20 pounds, and could easily be tucked away after your morning commute -- it even has a handle for easy carrying. The replaceable battery pack, which even sports a USB port for charging up smartphones and tablets, yields about four hours of use, and you can choose from six different color options.

You're a science fiction fan - would you buy personal transportation that you could carry right into your cubicle? Perhaps you might recall reading about Robert Heinlein's tumblebug from his 1940 novella The Roads Must Roll:

Gaines and Harvey mounted tumblebugs, and kept abreast of the Cadet Captain, some twenty-five yards behind the leading wave. It had been a long time since the Chief Engineer had ridden one of these silly-looking little vehicles, and he felt awkward. A tumblebug does not give a man dignity, since it is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel.
(Read more about (and see a picture of) Heinlein's tumblebug)

Via Engadget.

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