[messengers] Apple Introduces us to the Smart Bike

Date: 9 Aug 2010 01:21:13 +0200
From: Joe Hendry <messvilleto@xxxxxxxxx>

On August 5, 2010, the US Patent & Trademark Office
published a patent application from Apple that reveals various concepts behind
a newly advanced Smart Bicycle System in development. The premise is rather
like Apple's Nike + iPod system for runners except for cyclists. While the
system is for individuals, it's also designed to work with teams of cyclists so
that they could communicate with each other on-the-fly about course difficulty
or perceived problems. The Bicycle system monitors speed, distance, time,
altitude, elevation, incline, decline, heart rate, power, derailleur setting,
cadence, wind speed, path completed, expected future path, heart rate, power,
and pace. The system could utilize various sensors built-into the iPhone in
addition to working with sensors already built-into the bike itself. Apple's
patent is extraordinarily detailed and packed with interesting twists that the
sporting cyclist will really appreciate.




Patent Background



Many bicyclists desire accessing different information as
they ride, such as speed, position, heart rate, power or other information
related to components of the bicycle. To provide such information to the
cyclist during the ride, a bicycle computer can be coupled to the bicycle, for
example on handlebars. The bicycle computer can be connected, using wires or
wirelessly, to one or more sensors embedded within the bicycle or in bicycle
components. The bicycle computer can receive sensor information and display
metrics related to the sensor information on a display for the user. The
displayed information can be updated at any suitable interval, for example
determined based on power considerations, sensor refresh rates, user requests
for particular information, or any other suitable interval.



Bicycle computers, however, are typically expensive
components that would not be purchased by casual or semi-serious bicyclists.
Many bicycle computers require extensive set-up to connect the bicycle computer
to various sensors embedded on the bicycle, for example by requiring a complex
wireless pairing procedure or by connecting several wires to the computer. In
addition, many bicycle computers only provide information for the bicycle with
which the computer is coupled. The bicycle computer can't share information
related to the bicycle with which it is coupled with other computers, or can
alternatively only provide information related to a ride once the ride is
completed and the computer is connected to a host device (e.g., a desktop or
laptop computer) that sends the information to a remote server for processing
and display.



Patent Summary



Apple's patent is about using a new iPod or iPhone system
primarily on a bike so that they could share information with other cyclists
riding in a group. It could also provide feedback to cyclists regarding their
performance or the performance of other cyclists with whom they are riding.



In some embodiments, this could be applied to users of other
types of vehicles (e.g., motorcycles, automobiles, or trucks) or other modes of
transportation (e.g., walking, running, horseback riding, or transportation
using any other animal). Although many features described in the patent could
be in the context with a bicycle or cycling embodiment, it will be understood
that the features or descriptions can be applied to any suitable vehicle or
mode of transportation.



The control circuitry of the proposed system could be
operative to determine at least one riding characteristic of the first bicycle,
and receive, in real-time from each of the detected several electronic devices
on other bikes, at least one riding characteristic of each of the plurality of
bicycles. Riding characteristic could include at least one of speed, distance,
time, altitude, elevation, incline, decline, heart rate, power, derailleur
setting, cadence, wind speed, path completed, expected future path, heart rate,
power, and pace.



In some embodiments, a sensor for use with an electronic
device could be provided. The sensor could be coupled to a bicycle and include
communications circuitry operative to pair with at least one authorized
electronic device. The sensor could also provide control circuitry relating to
More at http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2010/08/apple-introduces-us-to-the-smart-bike.html

Mess media - http://www.messmedia.org/ Bryant Watch - http://bryantwatch.wordpress.com/