As LED lights get smaller and cheaper, and our mobile phones add more sensors and more connectivity, we’re only at the beginning with smart clothing and gear, but commuter gear is certainly a good place to start. Young Los Angeles-based upstart Lumenus just launched a Kickstarter campaign over the weekend to get their new range of smart LED connected outerwear out to market. Paired with their own developed app, the embedded lighting in the gear promises to boost visibility on the roads for cyclists, motorcyclists, runners, and pedestrians. Check out its automation, connectivity, and other details after the break…
Lumenus wants to lead the next generation of smart clothing, with products designed to save lives. Their new backpack, vest & coats all include built-in LEDs that function as smart turn signals, brake lights, and more. Their tag line of stay visible, stay safe carries through the small range that incorporates the LED lighting strips and 3M reflective materials in a subtle way so that the gear maintains a low-key look off the road, but becomes striking when activated, especially in low-visibility conditions.
The lighting embedded into the performance garments and accessories is all app-controlled. Integrated Bluetooth seamlessly connects with the Lumenus mobile app to activate turn signals and brake lights, monitor speed, and enable other additional features, all automatically activated through a ZeroUI interface that allows you to focus on moving on the roads safely, instead of fiddling with tech while worrying about your next turn or approaching cars.
Lumenus’ patent-pending app, built on a Google Maps API, acts as the brains of the system with the ZeroUI interface that lets the user focus on the task at hand. Brake lights embedded in the gear automatically engage as the rider slows down to increase visibility from behind, directional indicator lights flash amber as the wearer approaches their planned turn, and the gear goes into a special strobe-mode to boost visibility even more when crossing intersections. The app also lets the user input their own desired pace and the on-garment performance meter changes colors to provide subtle, but constant visual feedback without needing to stare at a screen.
TheZeroUI design works via Bluetooth Low Energy allowing the user to focus on their surroundings while the garment optimizes visibility. This interface and the App-based controller also future-proofs the gear, enabling Lumenus to push out updates in the future to add functionality.
The Kickstarter collection includes: two jackets ($275), a vest($175), and a backpack($125) featuring embedded LEDs designed to improve visibility on the road and prevent accidents. Each is available exclusively to Kickstarter backers at $100-150 discount (with several even cheaper early adopter discounts still available), in return for helping the brand fund their last stage of development and the first production run. Estimated delivery for all of the products will be about 7 months outnext June. The entire line-up will be presented at CES 2016, and be available through leading cycling, running, moto, and outdoor retailers beginning in June 2016.