Alas, poor Segway, I bid you adieu



June 28, 2020

End of the road for the ubiquitous Segway

   The Segway, which at one time claimed its two-wheeled personal transporter would revolutionize the way people get around, is ending production of its namesake vehicle. 

The Segway PT, popular with tourists, police officers, mall cops, and for crashing into Usain Bolt after his world-record 100 meter run, will be retired on July 15, Ninebot, said in a statement. 

Ninebot Inc., a Beijing-based transportation robotics startup rival, acquired Segway in April 2015.

Last year the Segway PT accounted for only 1.5% of Ninebot's revenue, according to Tony Ho, vice president of global business development at Segway. 

β€œWithin its first decade, the Segway PT became a staple in security and law enforcement, viewed as an effective and efficient personal vehicle,” said Segway president Judy Cai in a statement, noting that in the past decade it gained popularity with vacationers in major cities in North America, Europe, Asia, South America, and the Middle East. 

The company said 21 employees will be laid off, another 12 employees will stay on for two months to a year and five will remain at the facility in Bedford, NH, the AP reports. β€œThis decision was not made lightly, and while the current global pandemic did impact sales and production, it was not a deciding factor in our decision,” Cai said. 

The transportation revolution that inventor Dean Kamen envisioned when he founded the company in 1999 never took off. The Segway's original price tag of around $5,000 was too steep for many customers. It was also was challenging to ride if you were unathletic, overweight, didn't have good balance, or terrified it would spin out of control underneath you.



Ran DeBord - All Access Sporting News

 Follow @AASNSports on Twitter, or me, @RanDeBord

Attributes: AASNSports;   Ninebot; Wikipedia; Youtube


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