IO Hawk™ FAQs


Who invented the IO Hawk™?

It was invented in China, by a Chinese company called Chic Robot, and they call it the Chic Smart S1.  We think IO Hawk™ is a better name for it in the US.  The English version of the Chic website is here.
Here is a mostly accurate article from Wired.com that explains a little bit about the IO Hawk’s story.
Gliding Green’s is likely the only US retailer selling IO Hawks, who’s founder attended the Chic Smart debut in China, and we thought it was pretty cool then, too.

How hard is it to learn to ride an IO Hawk™?

As long as you can stand and walk, then you can learn to glide in 15 minutes or less.  To become proficient out in public, with changing conditions and unknown hazards, we recommend two to three hours of practice in smooth, open areas, without obstacles.  Because control is intuitive and similar to the control used for walking, it’s significantly easier, faster, and safer to learn than most other vehicles we’ve seen.  Bicycles take tens of hours to learn, and so does driving a car, skateboarding, rollerblading, and pretty much any other vehicles you can think of.  In fact, it’s so easy to learn to glide on the IO Hawk™, that in just a few minutes, most people want to hit the streets right away, but we recommend that beginners don’t start trying to do high speed turns and maneuvers until they have at least 15 minutes of experience.

How far will it go and how long does the battery last?

Like any vehicle, it depends on weight and how you use it, but IO Hawk™ battery will need to be recharged after between 4 to 12 miles of use.  At the IOHawk’s™ maximum weight capacity of 220lbs, you will get approximately 4 miles.  People who are at the minimum weight capacity of 55lbs, will get approximately 12 miles.  If it takes 2 hours for you to go 5-12 miles, then the battery will last two hours.  If it takes you 12 hours to go 4-12 miles, then the battery will last 12 hours.  Constant uphill or downhill gliding will significantly change the estimated distances.  With regenerative braking, downhill gliding is infinite, and constant uphill gliding at the maximum grade of 15 degrees, will reduce the distance by more than half.

How is the IO Hawk™ steered and Controlled?

Passers by may think the IO Hawk™ is controlled by magic or by remote control, but it is actually controlled by a combination of weight distribution to move forward and backward.  Rotational control is achieved through subtle, vertical, angling/pivoting in your feet.  Contact us to try it yourself and see how easy it is.