Woodbridge, VA’s Coros Wearables just created their second smart helmet, called the OMNI. It features integrated LED lighting and open-ear bone conduction technology, allowing riders to enjoy a host of features like listening to music, taking phone calls, and receiving voice alerts while staying aware of their surroundings.
Following last year’s successful LINX road helmet, Coros decided to create another lid to appeal to more riders. The OMNI was made with either road or off-road use in mind, and is interestingly both lighter and more aerodynamic than the LINX. The new model’s Indiegogo campaign launched just a couple of days ago,and it’s already nearing its funding target. Now let’s take a look at the details…
OMNI hybrid smart helmet
The OMNI helmet uses a standard polycarbonate shell and EPS foam liner. The angular 18 vent design is a hybrid style, intended for either road or mountain use. And it includes a visor that snaps on or off. A ratcheted fitting system provides a snug fit for various head shapes too.
The OMNI is described as an all-weather helmet which is rain, water, and sweat resistant, plus it can handle sub-freezing temperatures. That becomes an important trait with all the tech packed inside. It should be noted that its IPX5 rating does not mean it is waterproof, so it’s probably not ideal for sopping wet rides.
The helmet integrates two LED lights on both sides of the rear section of the shell, which switch on automatically when it’s dark outside. The lights can alternatively be turned on/off via the remote, and feature day/night illumination modes to improve visibility at all times. The helmet’s LED lights also indicate when the battery is low or that it’s charging. My only question is, why not add small lights to the front or sides of the helmet?
The OMNI’s open-ear bone conduction audio eliminates wires, and more importantly gives you a much better chance of hearing what’s happening around you versus traditional headphones. Two small transducers sit on the helmet’s straps and rest against the rider’s cheekbones. These units send vibrations directly to the inner ear, so you can still hear traffic or chat with your riding buddies. For two-way communication, the helmet has a wind-resistant microphone built into the forehead.
A wireless smart remote and mobile app are used to control the helmet. The smart remote is a compact unit that sits on your handlebars, with a flexible mounting setup. The remote can adjust volume, pause/play and skip through tracks, answer a phone call, and turn on the helmet’s lights. The buttons were made easy to feel, so your eyes should be able to stay on the road.
With the smartphone app (a free download for either Android or iOS), riders can listen to music, take calls, enable voice navigation, and get voice updates on their ride data. The app enables users to collect GPS ride stats (including distance, duration, average & max speeds, calories burned & elevation), track & save routes, and data-share their results with Strava and Map My Ride. The helmet automatically pairs with your phone when you turn it on.
The OMNI also boasts an emergency alert system that uses a G-sensor to detect significant impacts. Following a crash, the helmet sends a text message with your GPS location and a map of the surrounding area to a designated person on your contact list. With its on-board electronics the helmet weighs approx. 340g (size not listed). The OMNI’s battery lasts for 8+ hours and is charged via USB.
The $99 super early bird perk is already sold out on Indiegogo, but backers can currently still pre-order an OMNI helmet for $129 +shipping. The eventual retail price will be $199. The Indiegogo kit includes the helmet, detachable visor, smart remote and mount, a helmet bag, and USB charging cable. The OMNI comes with a one year warranty, and Coros is offering a crash replacement program as well.
Medium and large sizes are available, covering heads from 55-63cm’s. Color choices are black, red, white or blue/white, all with a matte finish. The OMNI should be ready for campaign supporters and retailers in the first quarter of 2018. Check out the Indiegogo campaign page for more details and to get in on the crowdsourcing.