• Faster, stronger, really cheap: this is the promise of the Hypershell exoskeleton, developed by a Shanghai startup
  • The project meets, like many other AI-enhanced exoskeleton projects, a huge success on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter
  • However, the scams are numerous, and it is difficult to say at this stage if the Hypershell 1 will really lead to a marketable functional exoskeleton.

Shanghai-based startup Hypershell present on Kickstarter its “Hypershell Pro”: an AI-enhanced exoskeleton project that is a real hit – at least, at this stage, in terms of crowdfunding. On paper, it has everything to please: the machine weighs only 1.8 kg for a power equivalent to 1 horsepower.
This allows it to reduce the loads carried by around 30 kg, but also to move effortlessly over a distance of 25 km, at a speed of up to 20 km/h. To facilitate its use, its designers have integrated quite a few AIs that assist movements. Above all, its price is quite incredible for this type of device: count barely 799 dollars (about 736 euros).

This startup plans to launch an exoskeleton for less than 800 euros

The price is even reduced to a rather incredible price ($299 or around 276 euros) if you make the leap of the angel on Kickstarter now – with a less efficient model as the key: 0.55 CV, 15 km of autonomy and 12 km/h for a weight of 2 kg. Those who want the “Pro” model with the characteristics we mentioned above can also benefit from a 50% reduction on the final price.

There is also a more expensive version in carbon fiber (Hypershell Carbon) available also with a 46% discount in case of Kickstarter investment. Between the features and the price everything seems very attractive, especially when you see the product in action in the official videos of its designers:

According to its designers, the most advanced model would multiply your accelerations by 4. And it is difficult to say, with more than €1,012,491 raised and three days remaining that the Kickstarter campaign is not a huge success. But obviously, there is also reason to doubt many aspects of the project.

Including its pure and simple interest to really lighten the movements, or its usefulness for people with reduced mobility. Not to mention the questions about the ergonomics of the device which could, for lack of sufficiently thorough tests, cause joint problems in the event of prolonged use – according to some experts in the medical world.

As with all Kickstarter campaigns, it can also take a long time between the end of the campaign and the release of the product. The price is attractive, but is it really possible to deliver such technology for 10 times less than the competition, all in a truly effective form?

Scams have been numerous on Kickstarter and the question remains unanswered. It will be necessary to wait until there are some (eventually) in nature to form a definitive opinion. On our side, we advise you to wait for the arrival of the first units on the market and the results of the first tests, before rushing.

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