I O Hawk Review: Why It's Illegal to Sell the IO Hawk Board in the US.
IO Hawk Board Can No Longer Be Sold in the US. Find Out Why in this Article.
THIS WAS GOING TO BE AN AWESOME ARTICLE ABOUT THE IO HAWK...
Until This Even Happened
An IO Hawk Hoverboard found via our Hoverboard Reviews page
This was going to be an awesome headline about how an IO Hawk Board would bring world peace.
Scroll Down to Find Out What Happened
IO HAWK HAD A VERY IMPORTANT COURT CASE, THAT THEY LOST
One of the first companies to gain a name for their "Personalized Motor Transporters", was IO Hawk. The company unveiled what many called a mini Segway, or a self-balancing skateboard/board to the delight of the technology loving crowds at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas Jan 6 - 9, 2015.
The company acted quickly after the show and began selling their self-balancing scooter in February of 2015. Unbeknownst to the people who were rushing to buy the $1800 personal transporter was that at the same time a man was rushing to halt the sale of the IO Hawk board
That man, Shane Chen, was the inventor and patent holder of the Hovertrax. But what is the Hovertrax? It's the two-wheeled evolution of the Solotrax, Chen's electric unicycle. At CES 2015 Chen saw the I O Hawk hoverboard and told them that they were infringing on his patent. Shortly after that, Chen was suing the parent company of IO Hawk.
"There were a few [knockoffs] in the beginning. Then last year, all of a sudden there were over a hundred," he said. "Then there were 150 of them. Now they're not even copying us — they're copying the copies. And they're selling them worldwide. - Shane Chen
Fast forward to Nov 20, 2015, and Shane Chen is a much happier man. He had just won the first of many lawsuits that he has against patent-infringing companies who had little regard for his creation. The company that lost? IO Hawk. Now, anyone who willingly and knowingly sells their devices will be subject to potential liabilities.
THE COMPANY HAS SUFFERED A MAJOR BLOW
THE HALL OF SHAME
IO Hawk price is a little high, especially for a company who gets placed into the Hall of Shame for supplier/vendors who suck! You can get an awesome Swagtron T1 for under $500.
WILL THE MARKETPLACE SUFFER?
With six cargo containers being seized, it might be difficult buying an electric scooter this Christmas. But, don't worry, I know where you can still get an amazing self-balancing scooter.
POTENTIALLY MORE COURT?
With his win, Chen is ready to defend his patent. The plot twist? How he's getting sued by Segway for infringing on their patents. What will happen next?
"There were different waves of counterfeiters. They'd just reverse engineer the thing," he said. "They'd buy it, they'd disassemble it and then make their own version."
- Kelvin Lo
(Managing Director at Invanti, Inventist's Beijing subsidiary)
Segway Wants Their Patents Recognized by Hovertrax.
Balancing vehicles and methods for transporting individuals over ground.
In an exciting twist in this whole debacle, Segway has decided to enter the courtroom, serving papers of their own to Shane Chen and his company Inventist.com. Citing pre-existing patents over Segway's unique travel methods, the company wants damages and a permanent injunction preventing the sale of any more Hovertrax.
What Does This Mean For You?
Fewer brands in the marketplace
You've got legal restrictions limiting the supply artificially
This means that the supply has been drastically cut short, around Christmas, when demand for toys and gifts increases 10x. Watch for initial price drops as vendors try to liquidate their supply. Then dramatic price increases across the board as the demand increases. Here's a comparison of 6 major hoverboard brands. See 7 Hoverboards Compared
Additional demand from news coverage and exposure
Because of how this is one of the hottest items for Christmas 2015, there should be several news outlets that pick up the story. This will also increase the amount of demand for this and other two-wheel electric scooters.
- Don't be afraid to buy yours now. There might not be much time left before the ones available are more than $1000 a piece.
- It's on sale right now for half of what it usually sells for.
- Overall, it's not a bad product at all, in fact, it's quite nice in that it has a weight limit of almost 300 lbs. If you have to get a hoverboard for anyone over 250, you should consider this. Otherwise, the IO Hawk price still goes for a premium price, typically $200- $300 more than other brands.
- For these reasons above in this IO Hawk review, I rate it 3/5 stars.
Razor USA Hasn't Been Involved
For being the nation's biggest scooter store, you would think Razor USA would have already had a product to market. This hasn't been the case, though with them now licensing the patent, that should change.
Razor is now selling the Hovertrax. Their first self-balancing scooter may be just what you were wanting. Check it out by clicking on the RED button. Tell Me About Razor Scooters
The Ultimate Mall Store has a huge online presence. Will this luxury goods retailer continue their sale success with similar products with this one as well?
The Hovertrax at Brookstone will retail for $999.00. It has all the standard features of other models.
- Max rated speed: 5mph
- Operating range: Up to 9.3 miles on horizontal surface
- Dimensions: 6.3 x 20.5 x 5.9 inches
- Device weight: 15 pounds
- Max rider weight: 200 pounds
- Standard charge time: 1 hour
- Regenerative braking efficiency: 70%
- Drive mode: Dual-wheel and 2-way direct drive
- Motor power: 1000W
See the Hovertrax in action
Watch just some of what you can do with this awesome device.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT IO HAWK
Where Can I Contact the Company?
Visit their website at http://iohawk.com/
How Do You Ride An Electric Scooter
You can visit our page of hoverboard reviews you'll be able to see the products we recommend.
Where Can I get a Hoverboard Now
See my Where to Buy A Hoverboard guide to learn about the other various manufacturers of balance boards, smart wheels, and self-balancing electric scooters.