Moves big moves are happening in the hoverboard industry. A new trade association from China has formed called the Hoverboard Industry Alliance. It is made up of factories that make the devices.
The purpose of the association is to provide a central guiding body to help manufactures comply with safety certification standards and patent development of safe machines.
Hundreds of factories were involved in the manufacture of standing scooters in 2015. In just a few short months the industry literally exploded onto the scene selling billions of dollars’ worth of the devices. Most of those sales were coming in from October – December 2015.
But as the stories of fires and explosions starting coming in things started to shut down fast. No products can be shipped to the US anymore without meeting the new standards.
This is all very good news for the industry as a whole and for consumers especially.
Here is an excerpt from Quartz Publication going more in depth on this:
“China’s hoverboard makers are banding together to try to save the industry
China’s fragmented, chaotic hoverboard industry is trying to clean itself up.
More than 100 Chinese hoverboard sellers, assemblers, and component supplies have banded together to form a trade association called the Hoverboard Industry Alliance. After forming officially in January, the group just held its second conference on Thursday (Mar. 3).
The group intends to work with organizations that set standards for safety and patents in the US, China, and elsewhere, one manufacturer member told Quartz. For example, manufacturers preparing to ship their devices to the US can turn to the association for guidance on how to apply for a UL certification, which most US retailers require before they will sell any electronic devices. Or, a manufacturer looking to make hoverboards could ask the association how to obtain a patent license for the device in China. Hangzhou-based manufacturer CHIC owns the intellectual property rights to the hoverboard in China, and it often leases the patent out to other factories in the country.
The group also intends to communicate regularly with UL and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), a branch of the US government in charge of consumer goods safety, to help create and enforce standards for the industry.
At last Thursday’s meeting, the group discussed the process required to receive a UL 2722 certification—a standard created specifically for hoverboards. A representative from UL attended the meeting to explain the steps and meet with the organization’s members. A representative of the CPSC is set to meet with the organization this week.
China’s ultra-efficient, ultra-fragmented manufacturing sector helped drive the hoverboard’s popularity last year. After a set of viral videos with the device made the rounds on YouTube, hundreds of factories and sellers spent money making hoverboards and shipping them to the US and other countries. According to the Guangdong Testing Institute of Product Quality Supervision, a quality control organization that also works with the Hoverboard Industry Alliance, China has over 500 factories making hoverboards, about 300 of which are located in Shenzhen.
But this speed and efficiency came at a cost….”
Things are moving now and fast positive changes are occurring making hoverboards more and more safe each month that goes by. We will continue to be at the forefront of bringing you the latest industry information as it happens.