VanMoof S3 Trial Ride: What’s special about the bike that supports Apple’s search network

On the morning of May 31st, Apple announced last month that third-party products support access to its “find” network. Two bicycles produced by VanMoof from the Netherlands were one of the first supported products.

VanMoof S3

As we all know, the Netherlands is also a big bicycle country, so it is not surprising that VanMoof appeared there. The 9to5mac test drive is the VanMoof S3. It has a simple black appearance, simple lines and super clean welds. It makes people want to buy it. This is an electric bicycle with a built-in motor that can drive the vehicle. Let’s take a look at its main parameters:

Range from 37 miles to 93 miles; automatic electronic transmission; 4 electric assist levels; turbocharging (electric boost mode); front and rear hydraulic disc brakes; 50% charge in 80 minutes, 4 hours full charge; dot matrix LED screen; LED automatic lighting system; keyless lock, touch unlock; automatic identification of the rider; integrated alarm; integrated saddle design; fully enclosed power transmission system;

Unboxing

After receiving the VanMoof S3, the first thing that impresses people is the way the bicycle is packaged. Drawer-type boxes similar to electronic products can not only protect the device from damage during transportation, but also make the bicycle easy to install.

S3 is taken out of the shipping box, covered with a foam protector, and secured in place by an environmentally friendly reusable zipper strap. Just remove the foam and connect the front wheels, handlebars and pedals to use.

After unpacking and assembly

It took about 30 minutes to assemble S3. In most cases, installation is easy, thanks to a more detailed instruction manual and accompanying toolkit. The only part that feels a bit cumbersome is connecting the power cord to the front wheel hub motor, which occupies most of the 30 minutes.

design

According to the pictures on the official VanMoof website, we can be sure that many people will like the design of this bike, and it did not disappoint after opening it. In short, 9to5mac said: The design of VanMoof S3 is the best bicycle I have ever seen, whether it is electric or other types.

VanMoof S3 handlebar

Compared with other electric bicycles offered by local bicycle shops, S3 looks very special. It hides the cables inside. In contrast, other electric bicycles have messy wires to connect to the battery pack, with over-designed complex buttons, gauges, and over-exaggerated design language.

Seat design

VanMoof S3 adopts the completely opposite concept of simple design. It is even hard to tell from the appearance that it is powered by electricity. Even the LED dot matrix display screen for displaying information is hidden on the car beam to display motor output power and battery status. The design is very clean, the weld between the tube and the seat stay reiterated their attention to detail, and the quality appeared to be very good.

VanMoof S3 applications and functions
After setting up the bike, users need to download VanMoof’s App from the App Store and set up an account.

The application is divided into several pages. “Location” will display your bike on the map. The “Settings” page contains settings for motor output power, gear shifting, lights, horn sound, touch unlock, automatic wake-up, etc.

VanMoof software interface

Support search but no U1 chip

As the first third-party product to support Apple’s search network, obviously this is its biggest selling point. For such an expensive bicycle, it’s a good idea to add built-in location tracking. It’s more interesting to use more than 1 billion iOS devices to find the bicycle.

To enable the search network support, the user needs to double-click the power button at the bottom of the bicycle upper tube, and a beep will be heard, indicating that the bicycle can now be found by searching the network. Open “Find”, go to the “Project” tab, and click “Add New Project” → “Other Supported Projects”. Finding the app will find the bike, allowing the user to name it, and linking the bike to the user’s Apple ID for tracking in the app.

Unfortunately, third-party devices that are compatible with the “find” network do not have a U1 chip and cannot be as accurate as AirTag. However, this technology is not as meaningful as finding a key in a device as large as a bicycle.

Set interface

Built-in lock

Thanks to the built-in kick lock on the rear wheel, it only takes a few seconds to lock the VanMoof S3. After the bicycle is locked, the user will hear a confirmation sound from the built-in speaker. The integrated security alarm is also activated after locking. For convenience, when the user approaches the bicycle with an iPhone that supports Bluetooth, the bicycle will automatically unlock.

Users can also use the left handlebar button to enter a 4-digit password to manually unlock the bicycle.

Call the police

If someone tries to move or ride a bicycle when the alarm is activated, a skull and crossbones warning will appear on the dot matrix display, and a rather loud alarm will sound. At the same time, the taillights and frontlights will flash to provide a certain anti-theft or deterrent effect.

LED dot matrix display

VanMoof S3 performance

This bicycle is electrically assisted. It can be ridden like any ordinary bicycle, but it is heavier than an ordinary bicycle. Many people’s demands for bicycles are leisure products, and the experience similar to ordinary bicycles is suitable at this time.

Front motor

Of course, the advantage of bicycles with electric assist is that the in-wheel motor can help users save effort. VanMoof S3 does this in a very natural way. It is a front hub motor that provides 1-4 gears of different output power, which can be changed in the app or by holding down the button while parking. When the user steps on the pedal, the VanMoof S3’s motor will start, helping the rider to easily climb steep slopes or quickly accelerate on straights.

Speed ​​display

Even more striking is the four-speed electronic shifter, which eliminates the need for manual gear shifting. The electronic shifter works with smart sensors integrated in the upper tube to control all on-board systems and process real-time motor feedback to ensure response speed and efficiency.

Toggle button

In addition to displaying your battery status, the dot matrix display located near the front of the upper tube can also display the current speed when the user is riding.

About 14,000 yuan VanMoof S3 trial ride: what’s special about the bike that supports Apple to find the Internet

VanMoof Power Bank

According to the level of intervention of electric power assistance, the range of VanMoof S3 is between 37 and 93 miles. If you ride leisurely, even low power is enough. But if you are a frequent commuter and use it as a means of transportation, then higher assistance can also be involved.

About 14,000 yuan VanMoof S3 trial ride: what’s special about the bike that supports Apple to find the Internet

External power supply

VanMoof PowerBank is an additional component priced at $349. It is a large power bank that can be tied to the bicycle and directly plugged into the power input of the bicycle to charge the built-in battery of the S3. It is used to extend the range of the bicycle. It can also be used As a way to charge the bicycle battery without having to drag it upstairs.

Although PowerBank will undoubtedly be convenient in these situations, the editor believes that it is a far cry from the stylish design of S3. It still looks beautiful, but it is more like a traditional bicycle design, not as simple as the S3.

in conclusion

9to5mac said that he has seen many electric bicycles, but from a design point of view, this is the first bicycle that interests him. Not only the design is good, but it also rides like a dream. It accelerates very fast, especially when the Turbo Boost button is pressed, which is not a casual ride.

But the design and performance are only half of the story. VanMoof S3 also has integrated security features, such as built-in kick locks, alarms, and of course the addition of Apple’s search network.

When it comes to price, the $2198 VanMoof S3 is really not cheap, but it is actually quite competitive in the electric bicycle (rather than traditional bicycle) market.

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