If you went on any social media platform in 2015, or even stepped outside your house, you have probably seen the latest transportation craze – hoverboards. Contradictory by name, these machines do not actually hover. Although if you were far away enough, or simply forgot your glasses, the rider might appear to be hovering above the ground. The devices function similarly to a Segway except lack the pole or handlebars. Each wheel has a motor of its own, allowing for greater stability as the rider leans forward or backward to move.
2015 was dubbed the year of the hoverboard. In January, CNN named the IO Hawk Hoverboard as one of the coolest pieces of new technology at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada. This original board costs a hearty $1,800. Several companies, either making their own or rebranding from China, have hopped on the board bandwagon. They have since appeared on streets throughout the world, late night talk shows, in the hands of celebrities, and nearly every Vine account. Even the retail store Walmart lined its shelves with boards for the 2015 holiday season.
The UK recently outlawed the use of hoverboards on their streets. A pilgrim was even seen using one to complete the tawaf – a circumnavigation of the holiest site in Islam.
The devices have made their way to Los Gatos as well. Several LGHS students own a board, and it has even led to the administration to set some boundaries on their use. Hoverboards, along with skateboards, now must to be left at the front office during school hours. The popularity of the boards doesn’t seem to be decreasing as 2016 kicks off. With the Consumer Electronics Show occurring this month, perhaps a new device will take the spotlight that hoverboards currently hold.