Garrett Almeida | Tech Time Editor
One of the hottest gifts this holiday season was the infamous “hoverboard.” The new personal transportation device has taken the world by storm. They burst onto the scene last year and instantly captivated the sneaker-wearing, latte-drinking youths of America. It soon found its way onto almost every wishlist. However, these scientific miracles of technology were not as great as they were cracked up to be.
There have been numerous reports of hoverboards inexplicably catching fire. This catastrophic failure of the device can be attributed to shoddy companies manufacturing them with poor quality batteries and charging units. These products are so volatile that they have been banned on airlines and are no longer sold by major retailers like Amazon and Walmart. California lawmakers are also concerned about this new craze. A new law, effective as of January 1, 2016, prohibits anyone under the age of 16 from riding a hoverboard. It also restricts hoverboard usage to bike lanes of roads, with a speed limit of 35 mph or less, and requires riders to wear a helmet.
Due to the chronic catastrophes that occur with the hoverboards on the market, famed scooter manufacturer, Razor, has
decided to enter the market with the Razor Hovertrax. The $600 board is one of the first to be manufactured by a recognizable US company, and is guaranteed to not explode.
But how long will this trend last? Has the tried and true method of walking finally met its end? How long can these $300-$2,000 dollar time bombs continue to fly off the shelves? Will the attempts to regulate their use make them even more appealing to the rabble-rousing youths of America? If nothing else, we can take time to appreciate Back to the Future’s prediction that hoverboards would rule 2015.