Today, we are excited to officially launch v1.0 of the Boosted app for iOS.
Our vision for mobile connectivity for electric longboards began over over 2 years ago, long before we shipped boards to our first riders. We built internal tools for wireless telemetry, and we realized that a mobile connection could make the Boosted experience even more amazing. Starting then, we’ve been quietly and carefully designing the Boosted board around mobile connectivity.
The Boosted iOS App is now available for download in the App Store.
First, we chose Bluetooth as the radio protocol between the board and the remote. Bluetooth (specifically, BLE or Bluetooth Low Energy or Bluetooth 4.0) is a well-established protocol for connecting two nearby devices, but it also happens to be included in every modern smartphone. We designed the Boosted board so that it could connect to a phone instead of a remote without any additional hardware.
Second, we designed our battery and motor control system for wireless software updates. These processors measure onboard sensors and adjust motor performance many times every millisecond, and the ability to update them opens up incredible possibilities. With our over-the-air firmware updates, you can increase speed, power, and braking, as we recently did. You can fix bugs or improve reliability. And you can even add new features to your board. Finally, we designed our system to handle errors. If a firmware update is interrupted, the board will reset and allow the rider to try again instead of “bricking”, just like with an iPhone or Tesla Model S.
Third, we added onboard telemetry so the board could record important information like the number of miles traveled since the board was built or the exact percentage charge of the battery. This is stored even when the board is powered off, and in the future we can add even more stats for the board to report through the phone, all with a simple firmware update.
Starting in December 2014, we began working with Steph Bain and Shaun Modi at TM. They are fantastic designers who were a pleasure to watch as they interviewed riders, determined key features for our app roadmap, and designed the first version of the app. If you’d like to learn more about their design process, they’ve written an article about the design of the Boosted iOS app on medium.
After months of design work, iOS implementation, and even tracking down a pesky bug, we are thrilled to announce the first version of our app. We’d like to thank all our beta testers, and especially one of our riders who lent us his phone for two whole days so we could take it to Apple’s headquarters and debug a Bluetooth issue. Testing the app has revealed that some riders have over 2,500 miles on their Boosted boards, with absolutely no degradation in performance or power. It’s truly incredible to hear just how much our users have been riding and loving their boards.
The first version of the app has a few key features. First, it reports basic stats like the lifetime odometer, trip odometer, and battery level (down to 1% accuracy). Second, it allows you to change riding modes. Third, it notifies you of firmware updates and allows you to update your board via your phone. And finally, it has a brief tutorial on how your board works. But this is just the beginning.
In the future, we plan to release a version of our app for Android. We also plan to add other incredible features like range estimation, ride tracking, and others that we can’t wait to tell you about. Eventually, your phone is going to be the ultimate dashboard for your Boosted board and for connecting with the entire Boosted community.
Thanks again for all your support! We can’t wait to go riding with you.