Segway for Kids introduced

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Mike Kruger, Apr 2, 2003.

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  1. Mike Kruger

    Mike Kruger Guest

    Because I wasn't in the office yesterday, I fell for the following April Fool's Day prank story
    today when I read my mail. Given the interest in the Segway in r.b.m., I thought this might be
    of interest.

    **Segway for Kids Introduced** -- Although introduced with much fanfare, the Segway Human
    Transporter (HT) has enjoyed only minimal success in the marketplace. Part of the problem, some
    analysts believe, is the device's lack of easy classification: is it something to ride to work or
    for fun on the weekends, or is it better suited for postal carriers and other vertical markets? Many
    people seem to want one, but not many can tell you what they want one for. Now, however, inventor
    Dean Kamen is about to quell such questioning. A spokesperson for Segway explained, "We discovered
    that adults who have settled into traditional means of transportation haven't entirely grasped the
    concept of a personal transporter. But those same people's kids are crazy about it, and better yet,
    parents love anything that lets them avoid schlepping their kids around all the time."

    <> <>

    Today the company announced the Segway Kids Interactive Transporter (KIT), more commonly referred
    to as the "Segwee." Proportioned to fit smaller humans (but adjustable to account for fast
    growth), the Segwee sports two oversized nubby wheels and the same gyroscope-directed motion
    system. In a surprise move, the Segwee actually travels faster than its adult counterpart. "Not
    only do kids have less fear of falling," said the Segway spokesperson, "we discovered in our
    testing that they possess much more control at higher speeds." She went on to explain that the
    Segwee could potentially improve a child's balance, coordination, and response rates, though she
    quickly admitted that she had no hard data to support those claims. Thanks to lower component
    costs and manufacturing economies, the Segwee will be priced much lower than the Segway HT: $2,000
    versus $5,000. When the Segwee becomes available in early 2004, Segway expects it to outperform
    the slow-selling Segway HT thanks to its lower cost and the increasing number of children whose
    bus routes are being cut in an era of sharply reduced school budgets. [JLC]


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