The hoverboard is considered as one of the most convenient personal transportation devices currently available with immense popularity from all around the world. Being a passionate hoverboard rider, I must give thanks to the inventor of the hoverboard. But, there is a debate regarding the topic who invented the hoverboard.
So, Who Invented The Hoverboard? The Beijing-born American Businessman, also the founder of Washington-based Company ‘Inventist’, named Shane Chen invented the hoverboard. He is worldwide famous for his design works related to skateboards, unicycles, and fitness devices as well.
As there are some debates still going on regarding the hoverboard’s inventor, I have decided to come up with the most authentic information about this subject matter. And, for that purpose, I did in-depth research on the topic – who invented the hoverboard.
And, finally, I am here with this piece of article, where I am going to share each and everything that I have managed to collect in the past few months. To make this piece of discussion a convenient one for you, I am going to divide the entire discussion into a few sections.
And, each of the following sections carries essential information that mainly adds value to the answer to the question “Who Invented The Hoverboard”.
If you are one of those PASSIONATE hoverboard riders, then you should read all of the following sections without skipping any single part.
Let’s start this discussion with a short intro about the hoverboard….
What Is A Hoverboard?
The first thing you should know in this case is that another name of the hoverboard is self-balancing scooter. It is a kind of levitating board that is used with the sole purpose of personal transportation. This transportation device has 2 motor wheels with a pair of articulated pads. The rider has to place the foot on those articulated pads at the time of riding the board.
With a hoverboard, you get the flexibility of controlling the speed by applying different types of hoverboard tricks. To put it simply, you have to lean backward or forwards in order to control the speed of this device. At the same time, you can easily control the direction while riding by twisting those articulated pads.
This device, called the hoverboard drew the attention of the media because of the complex patent disputes. In addition, the early units of this device, produced in several companies located in China, had a severe problem regarding the overheating battery.
Such kind of overheating issues led to hoverboard explosions at times. And, that’s the reason, nearly 500,000 units of the early units of this device were taken back from the market keeping the safety concern in mind.
However, later on, the manufacturing companies became more concerned about ensuring QUALITY while manufacturing these personal transportation devices. And, currently, almost all the top quality hoverboards come with the UL-2272 certification that ensures the parts of this device have met the stringent requirements to enable safety.
Who Invented The Hoverboard?
Shane Chen, the founder of ‘Inventist’, is known to be the inventor of this personal transportation device called the hoverboard.
The 64-year-old Beijing-born Shane Chen moved to the United States of America in the ‘80s and started his career as a designer of the scientific-instruments before he began working on his own innovation projects.
He is not only famous being the inventor of the hoverboard, but he is also well-known for his works on designing skateboards, unicycles, and fitness devices. These designs were manufactured in his founded Company named ‘Inventist’ – a Washington-based company.
Early Life of Shane Chen – The Inventor of Hoverboard
Shane Chen grew up in the city of Beijing, China. And, he earned a degree in Agricultural Meteorology from the Beijing Agricultural University.
With the aim of becoming an entrepreneur, Chen found a difficult environment in China in the mid-1980s for starting and growing a business. That’s why he decided to immigrate to the United States of America with the hope of finding better opportunities.
Career &Inventions of Shane Chen – The Inventor of The Hoverboard
If I talk about the career of Shane Chen, it is full of varieties of innovations that are playing a vital role in different fields of science and technology.
It was the year 1988 when Chen founded CID – currently known as the CID Bio-Science – intending to develop scientific instruments for the agricultural and plant research.
The most prominent products that were developed in CID are known as leaf scanner, photosynthesis meter, and plant canopy analyzer.
CID Bio-Science is the place where scientists, machinists, engineers, technicians, assemblers, and business people work together with the concept of building innovative tools for the research of the physiology of the plant.
They try to collect and analyze the BEST data of the plants so that they can come up with the BEST tool to continue their research works on plant physiology.
In 2009, Chen decided to sell CID in order to become a full-time researcher on inventing consumer products.
It was the year 2003 when Shane Chen founded the Company named ‘Inventist’. The main reason behind the starting of this Company was to develop more and more mainstream ideas as well as inventions.
In 2003, as soon as Chen entered into the retail marketplace, he made the introduction of the AquaSkipper – a human-powered watercraft – mainly converts the power produced by the up-and-down motion of the human body in order to allow you to fly above the water surface.
This device was featured, as part of a competitive invention competition, on a TV Show named Modern marvels on the History Channel. Besides, this fantastic gadget had won many prominent awards, including listed as a finalist at the ISPO Brandnew Awards.
After that, Shane Chen developed another tremendous device – a sort of three-wheeler scooter. Later, he sold the design patent and licensed to Razor USA LLC, also known as Razor – an American designing and manufacturing company of personal electric transporters.
Afterward, Shane Chen continued his development works and came up with a wide range of consumer products.
The notable ones are as follows –
- Orbitwheel Skates.
- Solo Wheel.
- Ultra Drainer.
It was around March of 2010 when Shane Chen filed a patent (provisional) for Solowheel – a self-balancing electric unicycle. This is a specialized unicycle that uses the gyroscopic sensor in order to keep the balance in the travel direction
This transportation device known as Solowheel won numerous numbers of awards among which the notable ones are listed in the following –
- Finalist for the ISPO Bike BrandNew Competition in 2011 held in Munich, Germany.
- First Runner-up of INPEX Invention Trade Show in 2012 held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
At the same time, Solowheel was featured on Bloomberg TV and The Weather Channel in 2011. Also, it was shown on The Doctors TV Show and MLB Fan Cave in 2012.
Hovertrax, currently known as Hoverboard, is known to be one of the most significant developments of Shane Chen. He filed a provisional patent application in 2012 for the Hovertrax. And, later in 2014, the patent was granted by the designated authority.
The actual release of the Hovertrax took for the public took place in 2013. And, I must mention the fact that the Hovertrax is known to be the first Self-Balancing Scooter that is recognized by the name Hoverboard at the current time.
Where Was The Hoverboard Invented?
To give you an appropriate answer to the question – where was the hoverboard invented, I must have to tell you about the history of the hoverboards.
I believe that having a clear understanding of the History of the Hoverboards will help you get the PERFECT answer to the above question related to the invention of the hoverboard.
It was the year 2013 when Shane Chen, an American Businessman, founded the Hovertrax – the first self-balancing hoverboard brands. And, the Hovertrax is currently known as the Hoverboard. And, in May 2013, Chen did launch a fundraising campaign called the Kick-Starter.
But, a Chinese Company named Chic Robotics came to know about the hoverboard from a weird article with the headline “Smart S1” – mainly suggested by David Pierce.
In August 2014, that Chinese Company, Chic Robotics, made the release of its first hoverboard in Canton Fair Trade Show.
Within a very short time, this gadget drew the attention of the western countries and became a popular transportation device there.
Besides, in the initial stage, many of the renowned celebrities like Jamie Foxx, Justin Bieber, Kendall Jenner, and Chris Brown endorsed the Hoverboard or the self-balancing scooters.
Shenzhen region of China, by 2015, became the primary place of manufacturing the hoverboards. But, some serious level patent issues of the Hoverboard were raised by Shane Chen in China.
After that, it was Mark Cuben who announced to take the patent of the hoverboards from Chen. This happened mainly because of the faulty hoverboards manufactured earlier by the Chen Company.
But, the manufacturing problems were not solved. Instead, hoverboards with overheating batteries were found in the market that led to severe levels of hoverboard accidents like fire on hoverboards, hoverboard explosions, etc.
So, in 2016, the US International Trade Commission had filed hoverboard patent infringement against U.P. Technology, U.P. Robotics, UPTECH, Eco Boomer and Free Go China. And, later the authority made a settlement with Segway.
Here we have a short discussion on where did hoverboards come out?
Why Did Shane Chen Invent The Hoverboard?
The main concept behind the invention of the hoverboard was if a device has two separate platforms for placing feet, then a motor board can be used to maintain the balance with the help of the feet.
Shane Chen mainly invented the hoverboard for indoors – the wheels of this device are way too small to be used outside. For a device to be used outside, it would need wheels that is of around 16-inch at least – like the ones of the Solowheel, another invention of Chen.
Shane Chen also mentioned that he invented the Hovertrax in 2011 and the Solowheel in 2010, but it wasn’t revealed until 2013. And, that’s the opportunity Chinese made use of by copying the idea.
The Feeling When The Invention of Hoverboard Is Copied
According to Shane Chen, a total number of 7 of his inventions were copied.
These inventions of Chen are as follows:
- Aquaskipper – a human-powered watercraft.
- Orbitwheels – sort of skates with wheels for inserting feet.
- Fizz Saver – Kitchen Gadget.
- Leantisserie – Kitchen Gadget.
- Alkacharger – One kind of battery charger.
Chen also told that there are nearly 1,000 Chinese factories where around 22,000 units of those products are manufactured on a regular basis. But, he with his team sold only 10,000 units so far.
So, basically, it really hurts when someone else copies an innovative idea without giving proper acknowledgment.
The Working Process of Shane Chen – The Serial Inventor
You will be totally astonished to know that Shane Chen usually works on 5 to 6 innovative projects simultaneously.
Another point that will surely blow your mind away is – a low-cost factory needs around a month to manufacture a product, whereas Chen needs around a year to come up with an invention. And, this is the significant difference between Chen’s invention and the copy version.
According to Chen, when he looks at a product, he performs a thorough observation. And, then, he thinks about how to make the product even a better one so that it becomes more convenient for the consumers.
Take Lunicycle as an example – Chen thought about adding moveable leg support to the existing design.
For a unicycle, it would take a long time for you to ride it properly. But, when you have a Lunicycle, it would only take 30 minutes to learn how to ride the transportation device.
According to Shane Chen, Lunicycle is the invention for which he feels most proud of. Actually, Hovertrax and Solowheel usually require the existing technologies – electronic circuits, auto-balancing.
But, to be frank, Lunicycle could be invented 100 years ago from this time. So, Chen really feels very proud because Lunicycle is a piece of the invention or more like a solution that people hadn’t become able to solve in the last 100 years.
The Dream Invention of Shane Chen – Inventor of Hovertrax
This is one of the most exciting things you would come to know about Shane Chen. Yes, I am referring to the Dream Invention of the inventor of the hoverboard.
According to Shane Chen, his dream invention is something more like a device that can fly in the air without any wings.
You would be completely amazed to know that Chen, about ten years ago, invented a winged aeroplane that runs by human power. For this particular winged aeroplane, you have to use the leg power in order to move the wings of the device up and down.
The main concept behind this invention was – the leg power is much stronger than that of the arms of human beings as we do walk every day.
A group of students of the Toronto University made the device fly around five feet above the ground for a range of one mile. But, the problem is that it not PRACTICAL and it’s DANGEROUS as well.
Besides, the human body is not supposed to provide that much ENERGY needed to fly such a device.
But, still… there are some hopes as flying seems to fun!
Is It Possible To Manufacture Back to the Future Part II Hoverboard?
If you have seen the movie ‘Back to the Future Part II’, you have known that a device like a hoverboard was used in that movie.
So, is it really possible to manufacture a hoverboard that was used in that movie!
According to Chen, it is a totally different theory as the rider has to lift off the ground completely. It is more like the Lexus Hoverboard – a type of hoverboard that is like an anti-gravity gadget.
But, Chen doesn’t think that it is something real.
This device doesn’t FOLLOW the knowledge of Physics. And, if it were real, then no one would ever want to ride a car that runs wheels.
A hoverboard is a personal transportation device that has earned massive popularity from all parts of the globe. So, a hoverboard rider should know about the inventor of the hoverboard.
In the above discussion, I have tried to give in-depth information regarding the question – Who invented the hoverboard.
At the same time, I discussed the early life, career, and innovations of Shane Chen – the inventor of the hoverboard. Also, I talked about the original concept behind the invention of the hoverboard along with the dream project of Chen.
I believe that the above discussion has given you the appropriate information regarding your query – who invented the hoverboard.
If you don’t have a hoverboard, I think it is more than necessary to buy one right now. Since there is a wide range of hoverboard models available currently in the market, so I would suggest you do thorough research on the top-rated swagtron hoverboard reviews before you buy one.
And, if you want to buy a hoverboard for your kids, then you should look for a high quality best hoverboard for kids as the kids’ hoverboards are a bit different than the adult ones.
And, lastly, if you face any problem in choosing the right kind of hoverboard, then you can message me at any time you want.
I will be glad to help you out!