The popularity of the swegway – or self-balancing scooter – cannot be denied now that they continue to make their way across the world.
They have traveled from music videos to residential streets across the globe. The question asked by some is simple: why?
What is it about this product that made it so popular?
There are two answers to that question. There is the slightly cynical one from those in marketing and the unbiased one from the youth population actually using them. Swegways are popular because the companies like this one were so clever in their marketing strategy.
The “smart” answer to this question is that the swegway was crammed down the proverbial throat of the young consumer until everyone wanted one. Companies send models out to celebrities and sports teams and all the images and videos of them using them went viral – just as the companies intended. A few freebies resulted in speedy, global coverage of a new device. Gadget lovers wanted to know what they were and how to ride them. Teen fans wanted to be like their idols.
However, there is much more to this popularity than a fashionable trend. Just ask the users.
It is easy to pin the popularity of the swegway on the Biebers and Kalifas of this world, yet these sorts of fads are often just that. The popularity of the swegway is not a fleeting fancy thanks to a glossy advertisement. There is a real desire to own and use one of these. When real users are asked about the popularity of these boards there are always the same answers. These boards are the closest thing that we have to real-life hoverboards. They are “super fun” to use. They are just cool.
The former has been on the minds of technology lovers since the anniversary of Back to the Future. According to the movie, we were meant to have fully-functioning hoverboards by now.
The technological advancements in the computerized balancing systems and mechanisms show that these boards are a functional means of transportation. They are not toys.
They may have wheels on them, but the shape, gliding motion and ease of operation mean they really are the next best thing right now. This ensures that these swegways are fun to use and something a lot cooler than scooters (far too much manual effort required there). Buyers love that they are easy to operate with a small learning curve. They can be mastered quickly and most users can ride them safely through parks and streets. The best can even show off a few tricks. This function, alongside the cool designs, portable nature and decent battery life means that users have little to complain about.
Swegways are not popular simply because kids are under the impression that they “should” be riding them. There is genuine appreciation for the style, convenience and technology involved here and users have a lot of fun. As designs and specifications develop, this popularity will continue long after the movie stars and pop icons have given up on them.