An upgraded route finder device that uses traffic information from other cyclists to plot routes has been launched by London based Beeline. It’s a combination of a smartphone app to plot a journey, and a “satnav” that’s fitted to the bike that then guides cyclists along the route as an in-car device would do for motorists.

(c) Beeline

The added feature though is that to reduce delays for cyclists, Beeline gathers data from Beeline rides, as well as bringing together the external information from OpenStreetMap. During their rides, users can simply press the rating buttons at any point of their journey to indicate if they’re having a positive or negative experience. These Beeline Road Ratings then feed directly into Beeline’s routing algorithm to adapt and improve future routes. The more users and the more feedback, the better the routes become.

Since the first Velo launched, over 1.6 million kilometres have been travelled by bicycle in London via Beeline routing. The 29,270 positive road ratings and 10,199 negative road ratings provided by users in London continue to contribute to the routes offered by Beeline’s app-based route planner.

The new Velo 2 device offers a brand new navigation interface and a larger display screen, and is being sold by the firm for £80 from here.

(c) Beeline

As well as Beeline devices and app there are a number of B2B integrations planned and in discussion. There is an integration with the Tier, the micromobility operator, with navigation in the Tier app being provided by Beeline, and the same interface as on the Beeline app. This is an exploratory step at the moment, as scooters and bikes have the same infrastructure needs.

Beeline says that there’s also potential for partnership with the bike manufacturers directly, integrating Beeline navigation within the hardware of the bike.

 

Updated 14th June: Corrected to remove a reference to the data updates being live.

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5 comments
  1. Mal Hastie says:

    an this be fitted on a motorbike and are the Bluetooth voice instructions as you can’t look at a say nab while driving in busy traffic as you’ll hit something

  2. Chris Rogers says:

    Hopefully it’ll also automatically apply the brakes at red lights, kerbs, no entry signs etc etc – as certainly about 75% of cyclists I see in ‘Midtown’ each day don’t.

    • ianVisits says:

      Just as in-car sat navs automatically stop cars from driving over pedestrian crossings, turning without indicating and parking where they’re not allowed to?

      Or maybe rather than singling out cyclists, we just accept that humans using all forms of mobility can be good, and can be jerks?

  3. ken peers says:

    Well put Ian.

  4. SteveP says:

    I had a similar device called SmartHalo (now discontinued). It came with a diabolically clever mount to keep it from being stolen, but which effectively locked it onto one bicycle almost permanently. I actually have more than one bike, and also found the device would have been most useful when in an unknown city using a hire bike. But the ultra-secure mount made that use difficult

    It also suffered from poor map/routing detail, so it was often unaware a street was one-way or had some other cycling restriction. So the devil is in the details. It did have a nice blinky (or steady) lamp that came on automatically at dusk 🙂 Perhaps this device will sort those details

    In the end, I found I usually knew where I was going in the city and did not need the benefit of a GPS. In the countryside there are better bike GPS options

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