For twenty-five years now, Marty McFly has held the title of World’s No.1 Hoverboarder by default. But finally, the rest of us are about to get a shot at his crown. A real hoverboard is just a year away from release, and the working prototype is already freakin’ awesome.
It’s the work of Hendo Hover, a startup which has condensed the kind of electromagnetic field that suspends Maglev trains into a compact motor. To show off the new technology, Hendo did the obvious thing — made a hoverboard, and put it on Kickstarter. Folks wanting a ride on the prototype can pledge $100 to the project, and anyone pitching in with $10,000 or more can actually get to own the finished board as of October next year.
The board floats an inch off the ground, and judging by the feedback from early testers, it is crazy fun. In a completely uncontrollable kind of way. Serves them right for dumping friction, I guess.
Nearly as cool as the hoverboard, though, is Hendo’s Whitebox development kit, which is being sent out to backers who offer $299 upwards. Basically, it is the float-motor in a box, and the idea is for anyone with a levitatory (well it should be a word) project in mind can get affordable access to the technology. Plus, for $899, you can get your hands on the upgraded Whitebox+, which is a remote control version of the motor. Rebuild your Lego X-Wing Starfighter around one of these beauties, and you may never need another hobby again.
One final thing: Hendo says the motor is scalable and sustainable, so look out for news of some hovercars, hoverbikes and hoverhouses sometime in the future.