The Skylock is a smart bike lock

skylock-bike-lock

My daughter is going to college in the fall, and that means we’re making lists of things she’ll need to take with her.  She’s thinking about taking a bike for the trek from the freshman dorms to her classes, and that means she’ll need a bike lock.  A lock like the Skylock would make her life easier, because she wouldn’t need to fiddle with keys to lock and unlock her bike.  The Skylock connects to a smartphone with Bluetooth, so you can lock and unlock the Skylock with an app.  Skylock can also sense your proximity to the bike and unlock as you approach, and it will automatically lock as you walk away.  It’s powered by a solar-charged battery; one hour of normal sunlight charges the battery for about a week of use (5 lock/unlock events a day and 2-3 hours of WiFi connectivity).  If you are in an area with free WiFi connectivity, the app can notify you if someone is tinkering with your lock.  And if your phone is dead, you can unlock the Skylock by keying in your code on its capacitive touch screen.  Skylock will ship in early 2015, but you can pre-order now.  The normal price is $249, but you can pre-order for $159 for a limited time.

Posted in: Health, Fitness, Sports, News

{ 12 comments… add one }

  • Sandee Cohen May 27, 2014, 8:56 am

    This is a great idea, especially the automatically unlock feature.

    I have a Zip car app that allows me to lock and unlock the car. But I have to drag the phone out of my pocket. Touch the ID to unlock the phone. And then watch the app connect to the Zipcar servers. And finally I can click the button.

    The automatic aspect of this lock is great.

    One thing, though, that I have learned from NYC bike messengers.

    If your daughter buys a new and expensive bike, have her cover up the frame, especially any identification of the brand of bike, with something like RESCUE TAPE which has no glue but fuses to itself. Wrap it around all the frame pipes of the bike.

    It will make her bike look ugly, but that’s the point.

    She doesn’t want people knowing how cool and expensive her bike is. Look on Amazon for “RESCUE TAPE” or “self-fusing silicon tape”

    And don’t forget a helmet.

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  • Janet Cloninger May 27, 2014, 9:04 am

    Sandee, If Rachel gets a bike to take to campus, it’s going to be an ugly, cheap, used one! She’s checking to see if she can take the bike into her room at night, because there are some people who wouldn’t care if it is old and ugly, if it’s “free” to them.

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  • Sandee Cohen May 27, 2014, 9:12 am

    @Janet,

    Then she has the problem that her lock is worth more than the bike.

    Must take it in at night!

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  • Janet Cloninger May 27, 2014, 9:15 am

    Yep, although I doubt she have a lock like this, just because of the price.

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  • DStaal May 27, 2014, 1:13 pm

    Check the campus – mine had bike lockers you could rent near the dorms. Enclosed, so it was out of the weather and out sight.

    Of course, she’ll still want a bike lock, so she can lock it at the other end of her trip.

    5
  • Daiel May 28, 2014, 4:09 am

    You could also give your daughter a LOCK8 – then she could have made money renting out her bike when she wasn’t using it! (It has built in GPS, so she would always know it’s whereabouts).

    Oh, and it’s smart sensors use GSM, meaning that she wouldn’t need wifi to be notified if someone was trying to tamper with her bike – they send a notification to her and other users in the area so if she’s in class, someone others are also able to assist!

    You should definitely check out LOCK8: http://lock8.me/

    Too bad if you already pre-ordered a skylock!!

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  • Janet Cloninger May 28, 2014, 9:14 am

    Well, she’d know where the LOCK8 is, but not necessarily where the bike is. Also, the LOCK8 requires a lock chain, which is easier to cut than than the metal bar u-lock types.

    And it looks like the LOCK8 is still in pre-order, too.

    I wrote a news item about the LOCK8 earlier this year. http://the-gadgeteer.com/2014/03/10/the-lock8-bike-lock-offers-extra-layers-of-protection/

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  • Daiel May 28, 2014, 10:10 am

    @Janet!

    I had the same concern too, so I spoke to the guys at LOCK8…

    The LOCK8 is mounted to your bike – it would be virtually impossible to remove it when it’s locked (okay maybe not impossible, but would take a heck of a long time).

    I’ve done a lot of research about it – since my bike is my absolute pride and joy, and I still think LOCK8 will be my security of choice… Let’s see if something better comes to the market before the end of the year!

    PS. Can I subscribe to your posts? They’re pretty interesting :)

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  • DStaal May 28, 2014, 4:17 pm

    Lock8 looks interesting, but it doesn’t look like it prevents partial thefts very well – removing the front wheel, for example. It seems to rely on it’s own sensors more than physical protection, and the one image I found with a cable showed a very short cable that wouldn’t be able to reach both wheels. I’d want to pair it with a normal bike lock, especially at a college. (Where you are as likely to get drunk mischief makers as actual thieves.)

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  • Daniel May 29, 2014, 4:23 am

    @DStaal

    LOCK8 told me that there will be a whole range of locks – including a d-lock, which will fit the device :)

    I also saw them at OuiShare in Paris where they had a prototype – you can actually set the sensitivity of the device using your phone.

    I don’t think there’s a better security solution – unless you employ someone to stand next to your bike 24/7! :)

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  • Julie Strietelmeier May 29, 2014, 8:48 am

    @Daniel Are you the CTO of Lock8? It seems a little suspicious to us because the CTO of Lock8 is Daniel Zajarias-Fainsod and the company is based in the UK. You have a UK email address that you used to get your comments approved.

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  • Daniel May 29, 2014, 11:37 am

    Haha I wish, but no.

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