Riding the Segway Ninebot Mini Pro

May 11, 2016

Riding the Segway Ninebot Mini Pro

Story from PC Mag...

Segway Ninebot Mini Pro app

AS VEGAS—Segway was supposed to revolutionize the world, but instead it became the provenance of tour guides and beach cops. And as "hoverboard" scooters became the big craze of 2015, Segway held back. But in February, the Segway Ninebot Mini Pro is finally coming to the U.S., and it really shows what a $1,299 scooter should do.

Legit models of two-wheeled "hoverboard" scooters, mostly derived from a model by Chinese company Chic Robotics, start at around $400 (for the affordable Swagway X1) and work their way up to $1,500 without much differentiation. Once Swagway set the bar, it became a little hard for the PhunkeeDucks of the world to justify charging over a grand for very similar products.

The Ninebot Mini Pro is not a similar product. It weighs more than your standard hoverboard, at 28 pounds, and goes further, 18 miles on a charge. It's much easier to get on and off the Ninebot Mini Pro, too. Because you control motion with a handle that's braced between your knees, stepping on the footpads doesn't automatically cause the scooter to move. Bigger 10.5-inch, air filled tires rather than solid tires make for a smoother ride over bumps, and the knee-height handle felt like it might help with some of the core fatigue I felt on other scooters.

The Pro can handle 15-degree inclines and is waterproof and dustproof.

Segway Ninebot Mini Pro app

Thoughtful touches show that this should be considered an adult transportation device. It has brake lights, turn signals, a headlight, and a parking brake. Turn on the parking brake through an attached smartphone app, and it will shake and beep madly if anyone tries to pick it up. There's no built-in Bluetooth speaker, but you can control the hue of the built-in lights with the smartphone app, for fun.

Since these things are too heavy to carry comfortably, the Ninebot Mini Pro has an extendable handle by which you can shepherd it along, walking next to it. Or you can remote-control it from the smartphone app, driving it to where you need it.

And of course, being a Segway, it's very unlikely to explode. There are a lot of Segways on the road, and generally, it's been a very safe brand.

There's also another model on the market from Ninebot/ Segway that you should be aware of a significantly cheaper version for lighter riders. The Ninebot Mini (max weight limit is unofficially ~220lbs)





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