VanMoof S4/X4. Will VanMoof reinvent the matrix display?

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More and more bicycle producers are bringing e-bike versions out and making their products compatible with the Internet of Things.

VanMoof is one of the frontiers, starting with the smart bikes, now and then they are implementing newer features in their lineup of bicycles, like their recently refreshed S3 and X3 models, with Apple Find My integration .

VanMoof S3 Refresh 2021

Integrating the latest technologies points the focus on the interfaces the bicycles are offering to the users. Most people still prefer, jump and ride rather than dealing with complications.

Simplest example; buttons.

The bell button should ring the bell. One button, one feature, nothing more, nothing less. On the other hand, tech-oriented riders may wish to have additional intuitive approaches, like the long press, double press.

How about the feedback you receive? Do you wish to receive sounds, tones, haptic or visual feedback? When we increase the features, we increase the complexity, therefore the complexity in usability.

The best practice is to address the essential senses of the user while interacting with the device. In this decade the best user experience is through displays, displays with a proper user interfaces.

Let’s take a quick look at the current options out there with respect to the displays and apps the bicycle manufacturers are offering.

Angell offers a dedicated display, which is integrated into the handlebar.

Angell app, together with the integrated display is quite nice. The app connects to the bicycle and works with the integrated display in harmony. Users can start the music on the phone then control it via the integrated display. Similarly, add a destination in the navigation and follow the instructions over the display. The integrated display also serves as a gym bike display if you like, so you can say burn 300 calories or ride for 30 minutes and watch the progress over the display.

Cowboy 4 offers a phone dock with wireless charging integrated into the handlebar.

Cowboy 3 is equipped with a battery indicator on the top tube but no display, the company wants their riders to download their official app.

Cowboy App Illustration

The Cowboy app supports the bike with features like on/off, lights, assist levels, cockpit view (speed, battery %, distance, duration), and navigation. The illustration above is from Cowboy 4 (available in September), seems like they redesigned the stem and moved the battery indicator also introduced a built-in quad lock with a wireless charging unit. Just like it’s shown the user will put their phone on the bike and also use it as a control center. Controls, navigation, activity, connections, leaderboards. Sounds like seamless integration and people will love it.

VanMoof offers a matrix display integrated into the top tube.

VanMoof, how about VanMoof? The top tube indicator was there since smart bikes. Battery indicator combined with speedometer. S2/X2 models are the first time the matrix display was introduced, an seamless integrated unique design with S3/X3 they improved it.

The matrix display indicates different states of the bike such as on/off, lock/unlock/alarm, connected/disconnected, assist levels, localization selections, gear, battery indicator, and last but not least the speed. The latest VanMoofs models also have speakers which support the visual interaction with sound effects.

VanMoof App Illustartion

There is also an official iOS and Android app, for displaying the current location of the bike (this is misleading since the bike’s location is the location of the phone when connected to the bike), rides (this is pretty inaccurate), settings (assist, local, alarm, unlock, light), help (FAQs, error codes, video tutorials), and bikes (switch between other VMs). However no navigation, activity integration, social options like leaderboards, etc.

Extending VanMoof’s Matrix Display

Matrix display is a unique feature of the VanMoof bicycles and with refresh models, it is also readable under direct sunlight. However, while staring at the top tube the rider may lose focus. Matrix display should stay but should be relocated, especially if VanMoof decides to extend the app into a dashboard.

Relocating the Matrix Display to the handle bar ?

If the mobile phone will serve as the main display with VM or 3rd party apps, maybe having the matrix display next to the handles/buttons integrated into the handlebar would be a good idea. In the example below, matrix displays show relevant button function while the dashboard is attached.

Mobile phone as the dashboard, matrix display divided between handles.

Stay in touch, subscribe to VanMoofer on Medium
Follow on Instagram & Twitter, if you own a VanMoof check out VM-Gear. If you like, you can support me by buying me a coffee ☕️.

🚲 If you consider buying an S3/X3, use the following discount code during checkout and get €100/$100/£95 off on VanMoof accessories & PoM services: 

Charging & Discharging
“Sonos Roam”

🚲 Buy a VANMOOF S3 or X3 ?
Apply the VanMoof discount code below during checkout to get €100/$100/£95 off on Powerbank, Accessories & PoM services :


Sonos Roam is out! The smallest speaker Sonos ever released, also really portable, unlike Sonos Move, you can take Roam anywhere with you.

Sonos Roam Unboxing in 4K

Roam comes in two matt colors, shadow black and lunar white. 168 x 62 x 60 mm (6.61 x 2.44 x 2.36 inches) big and 0.43 kg (0.95 lb) heavy. It’s waterproof with IP67 standard (meaning can stay 30 Minutes long under 1-meter deep water). So rain or dropping it into the water won’t stop your music listening experience.

Video Source:

Sonos Roam behaves like part of your Sonos network over a wifi connection to the other Sonos components while you are at home. If you have two, you can also stereo pair them.

Check this out! 👇

Thanks to the built-in microphone, it’s also possible to add Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant as the voice assistant. Built-in seamless feature, Auto Trueplay tunes your speaker to perform its best sound depending on the environment you are listening to music.

Image Source:

If you want to continue listening to music outside your home, with awesome Sonos quality then no worries. Roam supports Bluetooth 5.0 and Airplay 2, according to you can enjoy continuous listening for up to 10 hours on a single charge.

Sonos Roam Battery, Charging and Port Specs are as follows:

18Wh battery provides up to 10 hours of continuous playback on a single charge, charges with the included USB-C cable and any 5V/1.5A or 2.1A USB power adapter, a Qi-certified wireless charger, or the custom-designed Sonos Wireless Charger (which is sold separately) and the speaker has a USB-Port with specs 15 W, 5 V/3 A USB-C. For more technical details click here.

Charging 🔼
from 12% to 82%

The sound, design, and functionality are fine but how about the charging experience? 

So we’ve made a small experiment: using an 18W iPad charging adapter, tried to charge the Sonos Roam while playing the following Spotify playlist.

Charging curve using 18W iPad USB Charger

As you can also read from the chart above, while the speaker was playing music at a level of 60% volume and charging, for some reason after min 82, at 38% battery, it started to discharge instead. After min 103, we lowered the volume to 25% and charging continued normally. During min 150, the playlist was over so music cut off and charging continued a little faster.

Once the charger showed a value of over 80%, we removed the charging cable and started to play the same playlist from the beginning with a volume of 50% to observe the discharging. The overall charging from 12% t0 82% took around 3 hours and 15 minutes.

Discharging 🔽
from 82% to 52%

Sonos claims that Roam has up to 10 hours of play time.

Listening to the following Spotify playlist at 50% volume on Sonos Roam over the Sonos wifi network gave us 2 hours and 30 minutes of playtime for 30% battery.

Discharging was constant and reliable, didn’t experience any sudden drops in battery percentage.

We concluded applying simple math to the data and as a result, we may say that Sonos Roam would provide 8 hours and 20 minutes of playtime if the speaker is playing music at 50% volume.

Watch the video below:

Sonos Roam discharging from 82% to %52 in 2 hours and 30 minutes

If we would decrease the volume, we believe that 10 hours of playtime would also be possible to achieve. So thanks to Sonos for the precise accuracy in battery life.

🚲 Buy a VANMOOF S3 or X3 ?
Apply the VanMoof discount code below during checkout to get €100/$100/£95 off on Powerbank, Accessories & PoM services :

Stay in touch, subscribe to VanMoofer on Medium
Follow on Instagram & Twitter, if you own a VanMoof check out VM-Gear. If you like, you can support me by buying me a coffee ☕️.

understanding Sonos better during the Super Bowl XLVIII

I wish I could post this earlier but I couldn’t cause life sometimes sucks hard.

Anyways, Sonos was one another company who reserved a spot during the Super Bowl 2014 for showing the world this commercial. Why don’t you take a quick look?

While the advert was on air, viewers started to post on twitter about the commercial and about the brand and its products. I thought that it would be a good opportunity to listen the tweets and find out people are actually talking about during that period. I randomly collected around 5000 unique tweets (no retweets or shitty text).

I found out that people who own a Sonos system which they can connect to their TVs were feeling like they were actually watching the game live. The listening experience of the Sonos Playbar and other components (Sonos Play:1, Play:3, Play:5, Connect) which you can pair with is awesome.

Some people heard about Sonos for the first time and they were amazed by the idea of Hi-Fi in wireless form.

The rest who already knew about the brand and the products were either showing their interest on how nice the commercial is or their desire to get one in there houses.

I also clustered the most relevant tweets and their contents and found out interesting patterns. With respect to the relevance of the words and the frequencies, I rank them in a descending order, with the mostly used keywords.

Rank. Keyword : My Comment
1. Sonos : No surprise why 😉
2. I : people show their personal desire by emphasizing their own
3. commercial: I believe this is also not a surprise
4. want: Yes people really want it
5. that: I believe we can sum this up with #1
6. house: One place where a Sonos product belows to 🙂 people want it in their houses
7. system: It’s the whole package
8. speaker: Yes thats what Sonos does and they do it the best!
9. music: All started for music, Hi-Fi
10. like: this is what you feel at first sight
11. love: and this is what you feel when you use it
12. cool: and thats how it looks from outside