I'm in my 40s, and really am not an athletic kind of guy these days. But when I saw this unit, I was intrigued by its design, and had heard of the 2017 model, which will have AI, Voice Commands, Recognition and more.
It feels much safer than a hover board, and cooler looking than the scooters.
I actually bought a German engineered handlebars kit with kickstand, and that's when I was like WOW!!! You can even get it online at the ninebot store.
I would suggest you wait and check the price everyday. Never pay more than 799, and if you wait, it goes down to 599 fairly often, like for Veterans day, Cyber Monday, etc..
The German handlebars go up to chest level, and make the unit feel not only super safe, but extremely precise. The auto balancing feels good, and the miniBot Pro, in summary, feels safe and instills confidence in the rider.
The 2017 model also will have a robot head and 2 robotic arms, with an awesome SDK and API. But that might be in the 5K cost range. It's considered the Pro, top of the line Segway, or Ninebot (Ninebot recently acquired Segway).
The only advice I have is for safety reasons, as follows.
- It can turn so fast while staying in the same place. It feels like doing 360s on a skateboard that only has one giant sphere tire under the middle of the board. So, don't get bucked off.
- Curbs, uneven surfaces, etc... If you're going to attempt to go over them, you need to keep a steady speed, if you go to slow, you can get kicked off the device, and the bad part is, the device could continue to go, depending on which way the handlebars fall, so it could ride off without you or come back and clip you right in the ankles.
I suggest you just be careful, and until you really understand the limitations, stop, get off of it and just walk over uneven surfaces.
The German handlebars are awesome, however, the miniPro can no longer balance without a rider on it once the handlebar kit is installed because it is too heavy in One Direction, causing the center of gravity to be offset out of the bounds of the auto balance sensors.
That's why you need to get the little kickstand, as it will allow it to stay in the same place, so you can work around the problem this way.
If you don't upgrade the handlebars, then you steer using your knees, pushing them against the thing that looks like a little bike seat to the right or left.
There are no brakes, you lean backwards slightly to slow down, stop, or drive in reverse.
It can go 10Mph, up to 14 miles on a single charge. It weighs under 30 pounds, easy to pick up and walk with.
It's 5 stars, it's totally awesome, and I'm going to follow this line of personal transportation vehicles into where it takes me.