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Old 08-24-2014, 03:25 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by JW Hunter View Post
You could visit their Headquarters....a Post Office in Oracle, Arizona....

the Chinese and their US enablers will keep ripping us off in perpetuity as long as we have fools chasing stuff on the cheap....

I actually have zero sympathy for those who try to buy this crap....

"A fool and his money are soon parted"
I look at it the other way. It is extremely common in the electronic cigarette industry for an American machine shop to create a highly sought-after mod (essentially a nicely machined metal tube) and charge over $300 for it. They will have a huge waiting list, and most interested parties will be unable to obtain one. A chinese shop can create a near identical clone, produce thousands of them per week, and sell them for $60 dollars.

The core technology of the Segway hasn't changed in nearly 13 years. The price has only gone up. A PT cost ~$5000 after its wide public release, and still costs that much. Can you think of any other piece of digital technology that follows the same (lack of) price curve over time?

I have no doubt in my mind that there are thousands of people in China as smart as the engineers remaining at Segway Inc., and there are certainly people who are better at sales and marketing than ANYBODY at Segway Inc. Segway has demonstrated that they make no real effort to improve their technology, improve their production costs, or improve their marketing.
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Old 08-24-2014, 03:32 PM   #12
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I look at it the other way. It is extremely common in the electronic cigarette industry for an American machine shop to create a highly sought-after mod (essentially a nicely machined metal tube) and charge over $300 for it. They will have a huge waiting list, and most interested parties will be unable to obtain one. A chinese shop can create a near identical clone, produce thousands of them per week, and sell them for $60 dollars.

The core technology of the Segway hasn't changed in nearly 13 years. The price has only gone up. A PT cost ~$5000 after its wide public release, and still costs that much. Can you think of any other piece of digital technology that follows the same (lack of) price curve over time?

I have no doubt in my mind that there are thousands of people in China as smart as the engineers remaining at Segway Inc., and there are certainly people who are better at sales and marketing than ANYBODY at Segway Inc. Segway has demonstrated that they make no real effort to improve their technology, improve their production costs, or improve their marketing.
And you wonder why there is no middle class anymore...Great explanation....

Why pay someone $15 an hour when I can go abroad and pay children $15 for a weeks work....

Its called the hollowing out of the American middle class....To bad that cant be said about Toyota, Honda, or any of the South Korean company's.. They charge the same for an American car...except the profits and jobs get taken away from the UAW...
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Old 08-24-2014, 05:17 PM   #13
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We can get political about this, but the issue is really how we value and perceive the segway as owners.

As to the previous arguments, I believe it is easily possible to get a Toyota or even a Mercedes having been touched and assembled by more United States workers than a Chevy or Cadillac, even though they may not be union workers. Union workers and the middle class are not at all the same thing, and the unions are the owners of the current crop of politicians, regardless of the letter after their name, D or R. BUT THIS IS not my point.

My point is that as owners of segways, we have to decide for ourselves just what we own.

I was an early buyer, and in 2003 I bought what was new technology to me, new to the market, and an item that had no equal or alternative. I liked it. In 2006, I bought again, newer technology, still no equal available, so if I wanted that technology, I had one place to shop.

By then, I had surely tried a q scooter, pretty much a rad-to-go, and other names for a stand up knock off from China, with two large wheels to make it look like a segway, and two smaller casters or wheels under the rear of the platform to make it stay upright.

So, cheap knock offs did exist, but the core technology had yet to be duplicated and available for sale. (individuals had made individual units and prototypes, but only as projects, not competition)

Now, we have a different story. There are alternatives. Clearly, a stolen concept. Or a copied one, if you would rather. Not so clearly if it was a reverse engineered copy of patented work, or just a copy. Over the shelf technology now does exist to make a copy of a segway, without stepping on the intellectual property of the segway...

So, what do we own?

Is it a transportation device that is using technology that is now purchasable from multiple sources? Is it the same as a laptop computer that the off brands can be arguably comparable to the big names? Or is it something more?

I owned a 1964 1/2 Ford Mustang. If I added anything built after or with newer technology, it would reduce its value.

I owned a 1999 Volvo C70 convertible. If it broke and I added a newer technology alternator, as an example, it would not reduce its value, but increase it.

I loved both cars. But they were different in my eyes. I miss them both, but not the same ways.

We can all value our segways because of what they do. Most of us will agree, they do what they do very well.

But while some of us also value our segways because of what they are, where they came from and who made them, not all of us see that the same way, or value it to the same degree.

The computer I am typing on is an HP, using windows. I do not feel lessened by the fact that it is not an IBM or Apple. I do not feel lessened because the windows operating system was clearly a copy of the apple product of that time period, and once developed, it evolved along its own path.

For those who are condemning the Chinese copies, I ask who built your computer to complain with? Did they invent it, or at some time in the past, was it a copy of something someone else invented?

I like my Segway, and am very happy it is a real one, and not a clone or copy. I generally do not endorse (with my purchasing dollars) a product I know is a clone or copy to save money, but that is not at all absolute.

My segway is somewhat between the mustang and the C70. It is between a collector's item and a transportation device. It is between a cherished possession, and a functioning tool. How much of one or the other changes by day.

This is a Segway Enthusiast site. It is not a stand up transportation device enthusiasts site. I can understand that here, it is often thought of as inappropriate to tout some other device over the segway. I even mostly agree. But at the same time, I also enjoy honest comparisons between ying and yang, and invite that here as well.
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Old 08-24-2014, 06:24 PM   #14
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I was more focusing on ethical behavior and patent infringement....

I for one am not willing to overlook that....for those of you who are...and there seem to be a lot...

please don't complain about steroids or other PED's in sports and others who game and cheat the system....after all getting things on the cheap is above all else.
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Old 08-24-2014, 06:42 PM   #15
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I want a ninebot.
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Old 08-30-2014, 06:58 AM   #16
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I think the comparison of Segway machines to the Chinese clones should be like Apple to Microsoft.
Apple-Segway: Smooth interface, well built product, difficult to crack.
MS-Freego: Rough interface, usually plastic machine, likely to crit err out.

Saying this, however, doesn't mean I don't like Windows' OS, I do, and my desktop runs Win8, but I've also had Apple desk and laptops, and to be honest, I've had much less problems with Apples OS.

I may one day decide that the "Freegos" are a good alternative/replacement to the Segway Segways, but that day has not yet come, and I feel confident to put my life in the hands of a product with decades of testing and multiple subsystems, completely redundant in the event of equipment failure.
Machines built with high quality plastics and metals, with tight tolerances and completely solid aluminium chassis and gearboxes as tough as the ones on cars.

A Freego doesn't have that, yet, but I assume the day will come when there is a viable alternative, and when that day does eventually arrive, it'll be up to Segway Inc to do what they have to.
Lower prices, or, ...............




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Old 09-01-2014, 12:44 PM   #17
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Anybody who is speaking to the reliability of the Chinese balancing scooters PROBABLY isn't speaking from a place of knowledge.

Tritium, if you do have firsthand experience-- or even some technical knowledge about Chinese balancing scooters-- that would indicate they are unsafe and/or buggy, I'd love to hear about it. Without any evidence, it sounds like you're just generalizing the outdated perspective that China=Low Quality.

Interesting you praise the Segway build quality so much. Doug Field has been known to say that the best Segway they ever made was the i167. Something about the suppliers being well-behaved on that first round. Later quality dropped, and some parts were obtained from other manufacturers. Also, Segways have shipped with extremely dangerous bugs in the software. Check out the web to find videos. I'm still checking the net all the time looking for videos of Chinese scooters failing in the same ways a Segway could fail. I'm not saying you're wrong for praising the Segway's quality, just thought you might be interested to know.
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Old 09-01-2014, 01:39 PM   #18
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I too have heard of Segway employees saying that the 167s were the best built, and after that, many of the original parts suppliers were eventually replaced with lesser, and often Chinese made parts...

But it also is worth saying that all the recalls were on gen 1 machines. The last was after the first of the gen 2 machines were released, but the fault was found on gen 1 machines.

It took a long time, but Japanese copies of american cars started as cheaper in all ways, and eventually became better in most every way. Currently, they are among the best on the market, and do not cost more.

Chinese may follow the same path, where the copies eventually become better than the originals, but I do not believe we have gone that far yet.

Currently, Segways are very expensive to repair. I have seen no actual way to repair the Chinese copies however, so I cannot compare them.

I have said before, and I say again, I would love to see a side by side comparison of the different self balancing options out there... As of now, I have seen no such data available. I have not even seen much of any technical data on the chinese copies at all. I await that data...
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Old 09-01-2014, 03:15 PM   #19
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It's like comparing Apple iPhone to a Huawei phone, the easiest way is to compare internal parts and components, I've seen and repaired most or all makes of two wheel balancing scooters in detail down to individual electronic components and there's no comparison at this point of time, maybe in a another five to 10 years time things will change (after some changes of cheap clone manufacturer's hit and run mentality of the Chinese maker)

Inaccurate data provided by the cheap clone is often look good but a lie is never the truth, just go for a test ride (highly recommended) and one will easily feel the difference, handling is a huge difference between a clone and a Segway, it's just a no brainer to choice which is better once you step on it, I can guarantee you will not be able to finish a game of Segway polo on a clone because either you or the machine will not last till the end of the game.


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Old 09-02-2014, 12:25 PM   #20
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Karl, Animoto-- good points.

I think it is worth pointing out that the last Gen1 fault was actually found while testing the then-unreleased x2. The code responsible for the fault was unchanged from Gen1 iSeries to Gen2, so all of the then-available Segs needed to be recalled (I can't remember if the p133 was affected.)

This does mean that all of the Super Safe™ Segways out there were actually operating with an extremely dangerous software bug for many years. All I mean to express with this, is that for all their big, hard thinking, Segway isn't perfect. As long as I never get into the unique edge case scenario that exposes these imperfections, things are fine. I don't see this being any different with a Clone. It doesn't need to be perfect, just good enough.
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