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posted by chromas on Saturday November 13, @06:13AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the You-don't-own-what-you-own dept.

Zero Motorcycles announced their groundbreaking new battery "technology", in which they sell you a large capacity battery in a motorcycle with powerful motors and advanced traction control systems, and then lock all that away behind a software paywall that you can unlock (for a fee) in their app.

https://newatlas.com/motorcycles/zero-motorcycles-2022-battery-paid-upgrades/

Zero is not the first vehicle company to do this sort of thing. Notably, Tesla sells vehicles with capabilities that can be unlocked via software "upgrades". This strategy is also common in the CNC machine tool industry; it's long frustrated machinists that they can buy a machine with all the hardware, but then have a sizable portion of memory, advanced motion smoothing, and other functions locked behind activation keys, which often cost several thousand dollars. In that industry at least, if you know the right people and have a machine with a common control, you can get what you need to unlock it through other sources.

I anticipate a similar approach in the vehicle market, which has long sold "tuner" chips and has a great deal of modding enthusiasts.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIJiXNzpRMY


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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @04:36AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @04:36AM (#1195851)

    kTM were already doing this for their X-EC, and apparently Korean e-Motorcycles are only available "on a plan".

    I entirely expect electric cars will go the same way-- but won't we be told incessantly in online news portals how much better and more accessible it'll make eCars For The Rest Of Us, and Madison Avenue will succeed in telling how Aspirational-class Lifestyle they are.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @04:38AM (9 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @04:38AM (#1195852)

    The article goes on about how Zero could tease customers by turning on extended range for a day, to give them a taste of what they could have for another $$$$.

    I say, Zero probably also has the control to turn it off completely, just like Amazon has been known to turn off eBooks at the license server.

    Just say no!

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by mhajicek on Saturday November 13, @04:45AM (5 children)

      by mhajicek (51) on Saturday November 13, @04:45AM (#1195855)

      Much like how Apple diminished battery capacity for older iPhones, for reasons...

      --
      The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Saturday November 13, @06:38AM (4 children)

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday November 13, @06:38AM (#1195874) Homepage Journal

        "Battery management" is still a thing on Apple products. It's baked right into every MacBook OS, including the latest and greatest Monterey. You do have the option to turn off the advanced management options though, if you know where to look.

        For info, the computer will generally keep the computer charged to about 85%. But as it tracks your usage, it will maintain that 85% during the hours it is plugged into external power, topping off to 100% when it expects you to unplug and go "on the road". The explanations are found on the Apple support site, if you search for them.

        --
        Taking bets: When does Biden's approval rating reach 15%?
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @09:27AM (3 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @09:27AM (#1195887)

          Because doing this increases the battery life considerably....

          • (Score: 3, Informative) by Runaway1956 on Saturday November 13, @09:41AM (1 child)

            by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday November 13, @09:41AM (#1195890) Homepage Journal

            Mostly true. No matter what kind of battery we are talking about, there are ways to extend the battery life, and there are ways to shorten that life drastically. The point of all the complaints against Apple, is that the owner should decide how the battery is used, not Big Brother. No other battery manufacturer decides for you how you will treat the battery. You purchase the battery, take it home, use it as you see fit. If/when you seek warranty service, the manufacturer or sales people determine that your warranty claim is legitimate, or not, and honor the warranty based on that decision. Apple, on the other hand, attempts to tie your hands, preventing you from using your battery as you see fit.

            --
            Taking bets: When does Biden's approval rating reach 15%?
            • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @02:17PM

              by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @02:17PM (#1195926)

              One of Apple's major selling points is that they won't let you do whatever you want with the hardware. If you want freedom, buy literally anything else.

          • (Score: 3, Touché) by Opportunist on Saturday November 13, @11:31AM

            by Opportunist (5545) on Saturday November 13, @11:31AM (#1195896)

            But I can't be trusted with this decision because, ya know, I'm just a dumb little kid and don't know as much about the world as my Apple Daddy.

    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by FatPhil on Saturday November 13, @05:24AM (1 child)

      by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Saturday November 13, @05:24AM (#1195858) Homepage
      Yup, this is one of those occasions where the free market can solve the problem. This is a shitty product, don't give them your money.

      There's only one question that should be asked of "features", and that's "how does the customer benefit?". If you can't give an immediate and obviously true answer, it's probably not actually a "feature" at all.
      --
      I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @06:15AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @06:15AM (#1195869)

        > the free market

        Someone just arrived from the 18th Century!

        Yeah, everything was a Free Market once.

    • (Score: 0, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @07:49PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @07:49PM (#1195974)

      Exactly. Act like a slave, and someone will treat you like one. Unfortunately, such a high percentage of people are pitiful groveling slaves that it gets to where you can't buy anything that is not completely buyer-hostile. Just look at "smart" TVs, for instance.

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @05:33AM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @05:33AM (#1195860)

    1) S/3 Model 10 computers has 2 disk drawers the each was rated at 5MB. For dollars more, IBM CE would come out and cut a wire in drawer and 5MB drive will now hold 10MB.

    2) S/3 Model 10 computers has 12KB of ram. For dollars more, again IBM CE come out and cut a wire then 16KB.

    3) Rent a CPU. On the IBMi (AS/400) the 595 series with 32 CPU installed... You buy the number of CPUs you needed full time. Then buy by the day added CPU count (like for month-end). Buy if pay attention it is cheaper to permenetatily buy the CPU access if the number of number of days needing the extra processing power is > 20 days.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by drussell on Saturday November 13, @09:37AM

      by drussell (2678) on Saturday November 13, @09:37AM (#1195888) Journal

      Actually, no...

      For #1, you had to actually install the removable 2 x 2.5 MB disk pack, THEN configure the system to "see" both the fixed 2 x 2.5 MB platters and the removable ones to get 10 MB storage.

      Ditto for #2. The original, base systems came with 4K of memory. Additional memory could be installed in 4K increments up to 64K but you had to actually install the additional RAM, not just configure the system.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Snotnose on Saturday November 13, @09:46AM

      by Snotnose (1623) on Saturday November 13, @09:46AM (#1195891)

      So did DEC. Mid 80s my company bought several DEC PCs, back when IBM compatibles were new. These were almost compatible, one big difference was they couldn't use standard off the shelf diskettes. You had to buy special ones from DEC for about 3x the price. Turned out the OS didn't contain the format command, if you formatted a disc on another machine it worked fine in the DEC. It was especially appreciated if you put a copy of format.exe on the newly formatted disc before handing it to your boss' boss.

      Yeah.

      They bought these machines for upper management, after 5-6 months they drifted down to senior engineers, a few months later they got donated to the local school system for a hefty tax break. I don't remember all the issues but nobody wanted anything to do with these PCs.

      --
      I really suck at smalltalk. I just asked the woman cutting my hair what she did for a living.
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by sjames on Saturday November 13, @05:48AM (5 children)

    by sjames (2882) on Saturday November 13, @05:48AM (#1195862) Journal

    More proof of unhealthy markets. They can afford to build the extra capacity AND the tech that limits it for the base price and make a profit. In a healthy market, they would be forced to remove the limit and save manufacturing cost by not using the extra DRM like tech in the first place.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:47PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:47PM (#1195923)

      Not just that, but anybody that buys this is losing a bit of efficiency lugging around the extra battery. The only way this makes sense is if it normally only charges to roughly 80% and this just allows you to go beyond that to something closer to 100%. This would extend the lifetime of the battery packs as they wouldn't be heated as much as if they were fully charged at 100%.

      But, who knows, they might be idiots that just leave a bank of batteries that basically never charge, I could definitely see a company doing that.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 14, @02:58PM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 14, @02:58PM (#1196078)

      Not at all, half of a successful business is marketing and that includes segmenting the market. Many a great product has died from poor marketing and many poor products have succeeded on marketing alone.

      • (Score: 2) by sjames on Sunday November 14, @08:45PM (2 children)

        by sjames (2882) on Sunday November 14, @08:45PM (#1196174) Journal

        In a healthy market, the competition would start with the same thing but lock out a little less capacity in order to gain sales. First company would be obliged to one-up them to remain competitive. A couple more iterations and the artificial limit is gone. One company or the other then deletes the added cost involved in even making the limit possible in order to cut marginal production cost and lowers the retail price slightly.

        That's how healthy markets are supposed to work. It's a cornerstone of the argument in favor of Capitalism.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 15, @02:39AM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 15, @02:39AM (#1196242)

          > In a healthy market, ...

          Nice fantasy. What often happens--in my experience--is that competitors make something that looks like the original, but is cheaper made or otherwise not as nice/good. Because the copy is priced lower, it forces the original out of the market. Quality becomes a race to the bottom. This is one reason why, 'We can't have nice things..'

          A wise friend said, "Everything good goes out of the market."

          My corollary: If I see something nicely made that I want, I don't wait, I buy it now (and even a spare, depending on the predicted product life). That way I lock in the quality of the original, and I can enjoy my nice thing.

          • (Score: 2) by sjames on Monday November 15, @03:51AM

            by sjames (2882) on Monday November 15, @03:51AM (#1196266) Journal

            It is a nice fantasy. I'm not so sure that I'll likely find a healthy market (according to the theory) sooner than I'll find a living unicorn. Smith believed that with judicious regulation, the market might approach healthy. The "Free Market" crowd are complete nutters. Even Smith didn't believe that could work.

            It's also notable that Smith's musings on the subject assumed MANY sellers with economic power close to the buyers (within an order of magnitude or so), not manufacturers with a net worth of billions selling to consumers with a net worth under a million. Of course he also warned that corporate charters should be granted extremely sparingly and that the chartered corporations should be kept on a very short leash and required to stay within their specific charter.

  • (Score: 1, Flamebait) by Frigatebird on Saturday November 13, @05:51AM (1 child)

    by Frigatebird (15573) on Saturday November 13, @05:51AM (#1195864)

    Consumers are such suckers. This is why engineers, or even mechanics, make such bad customers! They understand when they are being screwed, and they never forget. Many years on, I will never pay for Microsoft, or Intel, or Adobe, or General Motors. You have to wonder, how long can they keep this up? Win11SE? Only for morons who are more likely to by Apple.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 16, @02:16PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 16, @02:16PM (#1196641)

      My old laptap is in need of a rebuild. Getting linux to boot is a pita due to uefi. Windows? Just works. I've given up. It can be a windows gaming machine now. No net access. The uefi config is that bad. Microsoft are complete asshats for what they did.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Saturday November 13, @06:31AM (1 child)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday November 13, @06:31AM (#1195872) Homepage Journal

    https://www.amazon.com/Zen-Art-Motorcycle-Maintenance-Inquiry/dp/0060589469 [amazon.com]

    If you haven't read it, you should. Motorcyclists were "hackers" long before computer hackers happened. Those crazy bastards sit up late at night plotting the overthrow of DRM, along with 4-wheeler civilization.

    --
    Taking bets: When does Biden's approval rating reach 15%?
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @03:51PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @03:51PM (#1195937)

      Yes, read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, a fantastic book.
      No, don't buy it from Amazon, save a tree, used copies are common: https://www.ebay.com/itm/373074899678 [ebay.com]

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by bradley13 on Saturday November 13, @06:46AM (19 children)

    by bradley13 (3053) Subscriber Badge on Saturday November 13, @06:46AM (#1195875) Homepage Journal

    The thing is: you spend millions developing advanced capabilities for your machine - be it a CNC machine or a motorcycle. The features are worth the money you charge for them. But some customers can't afford the features, or don't want to pay for them. So what do you do?

    It would cost far more to develop and deliver a second, less capable machine. Also, that removes an easy upgrade path for the customer, should they later decide that those advanced features are worthwhile. It is far more economical to deliver the capable machine, with the advanced capabilities "locked".

    I ran a small software company for a few years, where we did exactly this (granted, 100% software, no machine). It was genuinely convenient, not only for us but also for the customer, that we could "upgrade" the software remotely in just a few seconds. No new installation, just send a new software key. Of course, a few customers fussed about the fact that we didn't just *give* them everything for free, since it was there. Those were generally the customers we really didn't want anyway, because they fussed about every-damned-thing, constantly submitted PEBCAK complaints, etc, etc..

    --
    Everyone is somebody else's weirdo.
    • (Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @08:53AM (9 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @08:53AM (#1195883)

      So, rent seeking is good, since that is the only business model you know.

      • (Score: 3, Touché) by bradley13 on Saturday November 13, @10:30AM (8 children)

        by bradley13 (3053) Subscriber Badge on Saturday November 13, @10:30AM (#1195894) Homepage Journal

        Rent-seeking is the effort to increase one's share of existing wealth without creating new wealth.

        How is producing and selling a product "rent seeking"? The fact that you don't give that product away?

        --
        Everyone is somebody else's weirdo.
        • (Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @11:31AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @11:31AM (#1195897)

          Unless they are selling the locked hardware at a loss then the 'extra' features were in fact paid for by the customer when they bought the hardware. Charging an additional fee for what the customer already paid for is rent seeking.

        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @12:52PM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @12:52PM (#1195917)

          First sale doctrine. You sold a box, anything that can be done with its physical instantiation is fair game.

          Except for the exceptionally broken DMCA, which destroys private property rights that gorm the basis of our society (and privacy rights!), if you gave it to them, but weren't selling it, then it's a free gift with zero obligations to the recipient.

          Tough titties. Convenience is all too often an excuse for not doing the right thing, or trying to pull a fast one. Don't want them to have it, don't give it to them.

          Small children understand this..why don't you?

          • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:40PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:40PM (#1195921)

            First sale doctrine. You sold a box, anything that can be done with its physical instantiation is fair game.

            Yeah, sure. But like he said, some features can be unlocked with software update. I guess you can try to do that yourself or there is a group that does it for you. Whatevers. Maybe manufacturer can say that warranty is void but they can't brick your device remotely since they don't own it.

            Putting in larger battery and restricting range is not all bad -- the battery in the device should really last much longer when operating in narrower band of discharge. Lower max power from the motor also reduces wear and tear. Probably most that want to pay less are happy with lower specs and if they want full specs, it's just extra payment away. And you have flexibility of doing this AFTER initial purchase and not need to swap actual hardware.

            Anyway, this is not rent seeking, it's just features. It would be like Tesla locking the Ludicrous mode until you pay more ... but then buyers of this can decide if this is what they want in the first place. Basically, decide what you want and then decide if it's what you are willing to pay for it. Just don't get fooled by the "low end" price tag for the base model ;)

        • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Immerman on Saturday November 13, @06:01PM (3 children)

          by Immerman (3985) on Saturday November 13, @06:01PM (#1195960)

          >How is producing and selling a product "rent seeking"?

          Just that alone? It isn't. Selling the product with huge profit margins IS.

          The existence of a profit margin is proof of inefficiencies in a free market. The existence of FAT margins is proof that a free market doesn't exist - otherwise competitors would leap in and dramatically undercut your price.

          That said, for low-volume products the distributed capital costs of development and tooling can easily rival the the incremental cost of production. If it only costs you $1000 to build one more widget, but it costs you $1M up front before you build the first one, and you only expect to sell 1000 units, then for each unit you need to charge $1000 for production plus another $1M/1000=$1000 for a total of $2000.

          The problem is what to do if you see that there are X more people who would be willing to buy your product at $1001. Each sale would still make you money, but you can't afford to lower the price if you want to recoup your capital costs.

          The traditional free-market answer is you start lowering the price as you pay off the capital costs, until eventually you're selling all your machines for $1001 (the free-market price would ).

          A more recent answer is you simultaneously release lesser versions of the product at lower price points, that are all really just intentionally crippled versions of the original product, but still good enough to capture much of the untapped market. I think Intel's intentional speed-hobbling of CPUs was the first time I heard of the strategy. At first they weren't even crippled, just not certified to run at higher speeds, and it was luck of the draw whether you got a CPU that didn't pass QC at the higher speed, or overflow from higher tiers, though later they got more destructive about enforcing the rated clock speed.

          If that's truly what's happening then it's a clever way to recoup capital costs faster, with buyers of the crippled machines getting the cheaper price sooner, at the cost of missing features.

          However, in practice it seems that very often those price tiers remain in place long after the capital costs have been repaid. At which point it becomes pure rent-seeking.

          And unfortunately, the two situations look exactly the same to anyone who hasn't studied the company's finances.

          And when the crippling is implemented in a way that can be reversed for anyone willing to pay for the "upgrade", it really draws everyone's attention to the fact that you're behaving *exactly* like a rent-seeking parasite, regardless of the truth of the matter.

          • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @07:09PM (2 children)

            by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @07:09PM (#1195969)

            Gee, and all along I thought "rent seeking" just meant hooking customers/consumers on subscription plans, "some dollars per month" -- just like rent or the ISP bill, or going back to my '60s childhood, the "Book of the Month Club". Current examples are SAAS - MS-Office 360 for $xx/month, etc.

            Huge, un-earned profit margins are sometimes called "profiteering".

            • (Score: 4, Interesting) by Booga1 on Saturday November 13, @09:53PM (1 child)

              by Booga1 (6333) Subscriber Badge on Saturday November 13, @09:53PM (#1195980)

              "Rent seeking" also encompasses things like:

              • Car manufacturers forcing customers to use the dealer's repair shop for warranty work.
              • RIAA trying to collect royalties for non-members.
              • ASCAP forcing bars that don't even play music to pay compulsory licensing in case they might put on some music someday.
              • Printer companies that make inkjet printers that refuse to print. This category has a high number of of rent-seeking techniques.
              • ISP's trying to force Netflix and others to pay again for the bandwidth the ISP's own customers already paid for.

              The list of rent seeking behavior is quite extensive and not related exclusively to "subscriptions." The worst forms of rent seeking happen at the legislative level, not the consumer level.

              • (Score: 5, Informative) by MIRV888 on Sunday November 14, @02:48AM

                by MIRV888 (11376) on Sunday November 14, @02:48AM (#1196016)

                'Printer companies that make inkjet printers that refuse to print. This category has a high number of of rent-seeking techniques.'
                Kill the printer because it has been used through it's 'service life'? (Read: You used it too much.)
                I wouldn't know personally, but I hear this can be sidestepped with easily purchased software. You can also get large ink reservoir mod kits to end the ink cartridge gouging (I'm told).

        • (Score: 2) by bzipitidoo on Sunday November 14, @03:35AM

          by bzipitidoo (4388) Subscriber Badge on Sunday November 14, @03:35AM (#1196025) Journal

          In these primitive times, for business models we have only a choice of evils. I understand you had to profit somehow. Crippleware isn't a good model, but there are worse ones. Did you do anything beyond your immediate needs? Did you help in any way, in the slightest, to discover and bring to fruition better business models?

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Opportunist on Saturday November 13, @11:34AM (2 children)

      by Opportunist (5545) on Saturday November 13, @11:34AM (#1195898)

      Me, I'd have reverse engineered your system and unlocked it myself.

      If you want to nickle-and-dime me, you should be better than me.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:46PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:46PM (#1195922)

        I guess you would never use a system like Azure or AWS or commercial software in general, not even need to mention Oracle or SAP here ;)

        • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @07:58PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @07:58PM (#1195977)

          What do you mean "commercial" software? Free(dom) Software can be commercial... It's called "proprietary software" or "Enslaveware", if you prefer.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:49PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:49PM (#1195924)

      These are batteries, there's not much extra engineering necessary to not put so many cells in the battery pack. You'd be looking at increasing the amperage, so they last longer, not the voltage, and a bit of engineering to ensure that both models are safely balanced. That's about it.

      • (Score: 2) by Immerman on Monday November 15, @02:28AM

        by Immerman (3985) on Monday November 15, @02:28AM (#1196240)

        Parallel cells don't just change the amount of power stored though (the Amp-hourage). They also change the upper limit on your instantaneous amperage.

        I have no idea what the numbers actually look like for modern EV batteries - but depending on the design it's very possible that not damaging the batteries by drawing power too quickly is the limiting factor on how hard you can accelerate. If that were the case, then reducing the batteries for a lower-range model would be also make it less powerful, and leave a good chunk of the motor's potential unused.

    • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Saturday November 13, @05:37PM (1 child)

      by mhajicek (51) on Saturday November 13, @05:37PM (#1195948)

      Explain how that applies to a 2MB memory upgrade for $4k.

      --
      The spacelike surfaces of time foliations can have a cusp at the surface of discontinuity. - P. Hajicek
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 16, @02:20PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 16, @02:20PM (#1196642)

        IBM. Nuff said.

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Saturday November 13, @10:24PM

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Saturday November 13, @10:24PM (#1195982) Homepage Journal

      It's still wrong and evil.

      --
      Free Martian whores! [mcgrewbooks.com]
    • (Score: 3, Informative) by sonamchauhan on Sunday November 14, @01:41PM

      by sonamchauhan (6546) on Sunday November 14, @01:41PM (#1196070)

      If you read the article, you get a sense why it's offensive.

      Upgrade charging speed by 17% for US$295
      Double your charging speed for US$1,495
      Unlock 10% more battery capacity, with a further 10% available when you tell the bike to do an "extended range charge" for US$2,195
      Unlock on-dash navigation for US$195
      Unlock "parking mode" complete with reverse crawl for US$195
      Unlock heated grips for US$195
      [...]
      In another sense, coming from a place beyond logic and rationality, there's something deeply offensive about the idea that you own a 110 horsepower bike with a lean angle-sensitive stability system in it, and you have to carry it around, but you get 74 horsepower and a dumbed-down ABS and traction control system until you pay more. The idea of doing this kind of thing with safety systems, in particular, beggars belief.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @08:37AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @08:37AM (#1195881)

    Tonight there's gonna be a breakout
    Into the city zones
    Don't you dare to try and stop us
    No one could for long

    - Thin Lizzy, Jailbreak

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @12:09PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @12:09PM (#1195904)

    first of ... what a shitty name "zero motorcycles".
    second, it's just marketing gimmick. the price is the price. the " crippled" version isn't a real version. they just go thru the trouble of adding that "feature" to be able to cripple it.
    obviously this "feature" will make the contruction and management more costly.
    a competitor will just not implement this gimmick, quote the real price and make more profit.
    also who wants a motorcycle that phones home?
    i just freed myself from the oil lobby and their gasoline stations and locations (every house has electricity) so why would i tie myself to a new motorship? motorcycling is about freedom?

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:01PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:01PM (#1195918)

    I understand that there can be more or less powerful cars or motorcycles. This is totally normal.
    More - if you take a heavy motorcycle with powerful engine designed to carry it, and start to strip it down from excessive parts, subsystems, covers or mounting you get something lighter and faster. There is a name for this type of motorcycle, but it's not my hobby, so I don't remember how it was called. Generally you get a speed on the road by the cost of these additions which are not so much needed when focusing on speed.
    So here we have a heavier motorcycle with lower speed and inability to use these additions which make it heavy. It means: You literally carry the junk and pay for carrying it in the cost of fuel (gasoline or the electricity).
    Where is all this BS about energy waste? About fuels waste? Should customer really pay for this?
    Or maybe we have just now confirmed that the "environment pollution" is a pure marketing BS?

    • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:39PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, @01:39PM (#1195920)
      It's not pure BS. It's exactly as you described, an externality forced onto the consumer unwittingly.
  • (Score: 2) by HiThere on Saturday November 13, @02:34PM

    by HiThere (866) on Saturday November 13, @02:34PM (#1195928) Journal

    That was one of the complaints that lead to people abandoning RCA computers. IIRC the upgrade from the RCA2 to the RCA3 was swapping a long cable for a shorter one.

    --
    Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
  • (Score: 2, Informative) by FuzzyTheBear on Saturday November 13, @04:12PM

    by FuzzyTheBear (974) on Saturday November 13, @04:12PM (#1195939)

    113 miles (182 km) at a steady 70 mph on the highway.. well .. that's far from being up to par with any std motorcycle. Maybe you can go around town a bit
    but that kind of mileage makes it a totally impractical machine. even with full software it's a no go.

    Ridiculous.

  • (Score: 0, Troll) by Coligny on Sunday November 14, @02:06AM

    by Coligny (2200) on Sunday November 14, @02:06AM (#1196010)

    When enough sales reps are beaten into a pulp companies will stop doing this….

  • (Score: 2) by MIRV888 on Sunday November 14, @02:38AM

    by MIRV888 (11376) on Sunday November 14, @02:38AM (#1196015)

    There's gotta (gonna) be a huge market for hacked / generated keys.

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by sonamchauhan on Sunday November 14, @01:44PM

    by sonamchauhan (6546) on Sunday November 14, @01:44PM (#1196071)

    Let's just buy zero of their motorcycles.

    Safety should never be a paid option, especially when you're already carting the safety hardware around. Has the world learnt nothing from Boeing 737 MAX debacle?

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