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Are Hoverboards still cool? What you need to know if you want one

What you need to know if you're thinking of buying a hoverboard

The best hoverboard combines style, function, and safety at a reasonable price. To find the top performers in a bustling market, we taught ourselves how to ride and tested seven finalists ourselves. After rolling, zipping, and occasionally eating it on hardwood and city streets, we found that two boards in particular stood out from the rest.

Best for Commuting:

Even on wet roads, cracked sidewalks, and rocky asphalt, we felt safe and comfortable on the Segway. With pneumatic tires and 800W of motor power, it’s a powerful board at the midrange price of $499. However, if you’re just looking to board for fun, you may find that the knee-controlled steering bar cramps your style.

 

Best for Recreation:

With wide fenders, high-quality speakers, and the smoothest movements, Jetson makes for a stable and stylish ride. It’s also a bargain compared to other hoverboards, at just $399. While it’s not built for rough outdoor obstacles, it’s a solid choice for riding indoors or on paved ground.

 

 

 

Do they hover? No. Are they a lot of fun? Yes. Can they get you to work, school, and back? Some of them. Whether you’re hoverboarding to the office or zooming around the block, our top two picks offer the most natural, intuitive, and fluid rides.

Our testers unanimously agreed that the Segway miniPRO provided the safest ride both indoors and outdoors. The tall wheels and powerful motor lumbered solidly over sidewalks, grass, asphalt, and debris, even on hilly terrain. We also liked that the miniPRO’s sensors automatically slowed down the hoverboard and tipped it slightly back when rolling down steeper inclines. With a knee-height steering bar and wide foot platform, this hoverboard is user-friendly and a great starting choice for beginners. The battery life was also the best by a wide margin. The Segway miniPRO retails for $499 and comes with a 1-year warranty.

The Jetson V6 won us over with its intuitive movement and wide, stable frame. Riding the Jetson indoors and on smooth sidewalks felt nearly as natural as walking — it was responsive without feeling slippery or slow, and it was the most maneuverable of the boards we tested. It also had the most user-friendly mobile app, with an attractive interface and high-quality audio for blasting music during your ride. The Jetson V6 retails for $399 and comes with a 1-year warranty.

 

Don’t buy cheap, uncertified boardsThough many online merchants list boards that look like our top picks at dirt-cheap prices, we advise caution. These boards are often uncertified knockoffs that haven’t undergone safety tests. While the exterior of the board may appear similar, the lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries are sometimes replaced by cheap, dangerous counterfeits that may catch fire.

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