Many mountain bikers ride alone and a fear many riders (and their loved ones) share is crashing hard in the woods and never making it back out. Two new products claim to offer a digital solution to adding some safety while riding solo.
A new line of helmets from Specialized will be featuring ANGi (Angular and G-force indicator). This devise, features an accelerometer and gyroscope as well as a bluetooth radio to connect to your phone. Without that phone connection it appears that the ANGi won’t really do anything. The key is the Specialized Ride app that connects to the ANGi sensors alerts your loved ones when a crash is detected.
This feature of course relies on your cell phone having signal in order to send a text. Many areas where I ride, cell signal is spotty at best. To try to get around this the Specialized Ride app allows you to also set an expected ride time. If you go over your ride time, the app will alert your loved ones with your last known location when your phone had a connection.
ANGi helmets get a 1-year subscription to the premium version of Specialized’s Ride App. After the first year, there’s a $29.99 annual fee for the service. The sensor alone, which can be fitted to any 2019 specialized helmet retails for $50. The most affordable mountain helmet with ANGi preinstalled is the $95 Tactic III
You can find out more about ANGi here https://www.specialized.com/us/en/angi
TILT Detection System
The second new product comes from a new company out of Denmark. The TILT sensor works in much the same way as ANGi by connecting to an app on smartphone. However, the sensor attaches to your wheel like a speed sensor instead of to your helmet. Whether one method is better than the other for preventing false alerts will remain to be seen as people start using these products.
The TILT detection system also includes a unique social feature that will alert any other TILT users of a crash in their area. To make this even remotely effective though TILT would need a lot of users. While this feature sounds nice on paper, it feels like the likelihood of another TILT user being on the same trail system at the same time to be very low at this point.
The TILT system integrates with the SingleTracker app that supports a social network of sorts and online mapping. I took the app for a little test drive and it appears that they are building their trail maps from scratch. As a result, there are almost no trails mapped in the U.S.
The TILT sensor sells for about $99 USD. You can find out more here: http://tilt-rescue.com/