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Author Topic: Skully FENIX AR Review  (Read 2399 times)

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April 13, 2019, 07:42:22 AM
Reply #30
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Rider Ron

Supporting Member
Ah, and the plot thickens... >:D
Beam me up, Scotty.  There's no intelligent life here.  ;-)
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April 13, 2019, 07:44:14 AM
Reply #31
Offline

HDBitchin

Administrator
Ah, and the plot thickens... >:D
Hopefully I will get some answers.

April 15, 2019, 03:20:20 PM
Reply #32
Offline

HDBitchin

Administrator
Skully Customer Care finally replied to my email which was sent out originally on March 25th. I now have a scheduled phone call with their tech support on Monday at 1 PM Mountain Standard Time.
Spoke with Skully today on the phone today. 

The muting music issue that I have experienced with Apple Music and even possibly Rider Ron’s Android phone and his playlist muting when a OK SKULLY command is given are known issues and they feel that they know enough that a new Firmware release will solve that in the near future.

They had not heard the issue that I have experienced since loading 2.0.9 where the helmet has lost its voice. Currently with 2.0.9, I have no navigation voice and any OK SKULLY commands given such as “What time is it?” or “Check Battery” are not repsonded to (no voice will come back with time or battery level). With this 2.0.9 Firmware the music can still be set up to play but any OK SKULLY command will still permanently mute the music.

The guys I talked with on the phone call thought maybe the Firmware didn’t load properly but I did let them know I got a successful load confirmation screen after loading 2.0.9. That load confirmation was saved as a screen capture and is shown in this thread in a previous post.

Another thing that I learned on the phone call was that Skully shipped their helmets with a piece of paper (a manual supplement page) that informed the new owners about the two Bluetooth connections that was mentioned earlier in this review. The paper provided a link to the below YouTube video which gives you the process steps for pairing the helmet to both Bluetooth paths. This helmet that was reviewed was purchased on eBay so the paper that gave this information was lost it would seem. Time to revise the documents? Yes, that would be a good action to take. Their support page which would have the latest release of the manual and the quick start guide are still older versions that don’t mention this Bluetooth process to connect the two paths.



Note: Skully's YouTube channel no longer has any videos.

April 15, 2019, 05:14:03 PM
Reply #33
Offline

HDBitchin

Administrator
On the ride home tonight something worth mentioning happened.

I had the helmet playing music and navigation was “displaying” the way home but no NAV voice was being given. About 2 miles from my starting point the music muted and the helmet spoke. It said “Reduce Speed”. I am not certain about the first word. I heard it 3 more times and I think it said “Reduce Speed”. The music never came back but navigation display continued to show turn vectors and MPH. No nav information was spoken other than the 3 times it asked me to Reduce Speed.


April 15, 2019, 05:47:12 PM
Reply #34
Offline

NoSuperSlabs

Supporting Member
Their helmet doesn’t seem to be ready for Prime Time.
Two Lane Highway
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April 16, 2019, 07:39:01 PM
Reply #35
Offline

HDBitchin

Administrator
The Skully App on my iPhone is giving me this message with every use of the app now. They do have a way in settings to manually ask if the firmware needs update. I am not manually asking it to tell me if the firmware is up to date but it seems to want me to automatically inform me now every time I use it. Slightly annoying.


April 17, 2019, 07:44:17 AM
Reply #36
Offline

maniacmac

Global Moderator
Maybe the helmet is lonely
CARS SUCK!
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May 11, 2019, 01:44:40 PM
Reply #37
Offline

HDBitchin

Administrator
Skully released a new Firmware yesterday for the helmet and also some Android and iOS App fixes.

They now have 2.1.0 available for the helmet.

Guess what they claim to have fixed? Much of what I experienced using their 2.0.8 and 2.0.9 releases.

My opinion follows but I think some will agree. Their real problem is that the HUD is still too small and useless in my opinion. A rearview camera showing a 180 degree view on a display that small isn't adding safety. No amount of software is going fix their hardware problem... Too small a display and washed out in sunlight.

Here is a summary of their new firmware and issues that were addressed in the helmet and the Apps...

iOS Phone App v2.0.5

Improvements include:

• Fixed QR code scanner during first time user on-boarding processes.
o A bug related to parsing the QR code after being scanned during the beginner onboarding process has been resolved.
• Built-in-music player removed.
o Customer feedback suggested using external music players of their choice was preferred. The built-in Spotify player has been removed and now any music player (Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music, etc.) can be used.

SKULLY FENIX AR Helmet Code v2.1.0

Improvements include:

• Fix for Bluetooth® audio playback.
o Music playing while a voice command was performed would often times not resume. This has been identified and fixed.
• Fix for text-to-speech not working after update to FW (“firmware”) v2.0.9. (What I call speechless below)
o The text-to-speech module stopped working for some users after updating OTA (“over-the-air”). This has been identified and fixed.

Also found some release notes for what was said to be addressed in 2.0.9 which I loaded and it made the helmet go speechless and they claim to now fix in 2.1.0 as mentioned above. The below fixes in 2.0.9 are rear camera HUD enhancements but if that improved after I loaded 2.0.9 I can't say that I saw any improvements as they claim below.

SKULLY FENIX-AR Helmet Code v2.0.9

Improvements include:

• Updated warp map for rear view camera image.
o The warp map is responsible for manipulating the rear-view camera image to be displayed properly within the HUD. Specific improvements include:
§ Image is flatter.
§ Image is centered.

Android Phone App v2.0.6

Improvements include:

• Fix for API incompatibility on Android 9.0+.
o Users may be seeing an API incompatibility message in the Android phone's display using the App.
o This API incompatibility has been fixed and is backward compatible for all older versions of Android.
• Built-in-music player removed.
o Customer feedback suggested using external music players of their choice was preferred. The built-in Spotify player has been removed and now any music player (Spotify, Pandora, Google Play, etc.) can be used.
o Any issues should be reported through our customer service support email address and include the model of phone and version of the Android operating system being used.


May 12, 2019, 10:03:06 AM
Reply #38
Offline

NoSuperSlabs

Supporting Member
Maybe the helmet is lonely
Lonely and confused!  ::)
Two Lane Highway
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May 16, 2019, 04:13:46 PM
Reply #39
Offline

WantMore

Supporting Member
The detailed review and the issues that were found by HDBitchin make you wonder what the hell reviewers like ChaseOnTwoWheels are doing? If you are familiar with the YouTube channel that #ChaseOnTwoWheels runs then you will know that his review found nothing wrong with the Skully Fenix AR. Why? Probably was paid to do his review.

Sadly, if you see these big YouTube guys that get thousands and thousands of views per video doing product reviews keep in mind that they are likely getting paid to do what they do and you won’t get a real review. Great way for a company like Skully to get their name into the minds and possibly into the wallets of the motorcycle community is to have someone that gets lots of channel views to “review” your product (and say glorious things).

Thanks Tank aka HDBitchin for an honest review.

Both Skully and ChaseOnTwoWheels, you guys IMO should take a look in the mirror to see what everyone else sees.
Smoke em if you got em
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May 21, 2019, 09:36:23 AM
Reply #40
Offline

NoSuperSlabs

Supporting Member
Skully released a new Firmware yesterday for the helmet and also some Android and iOS App fixes.

They now have 2.1.0 available for the helmet.

Guess what they claim to have fixed? Much of what I experienced using their 2.0.8 and 2.0.9 releases.

My opinion follows but I think some will agree. Their real problem is that the HUD is still too small and useless in my opinion. A rearview camera showing a 180 degree view on a display that small isn't adding safety. No amount of software is going fix their hardware problem... Too small a display and washed out in sunlight.

Here is a summary of their new firmware and issues that were addressed in the helmet and the Apps...

iOS Phone App v2.0.5

Improvements include:

• Fixed QR code scanner during first time user on-boarding processes.
o A bug related to parsing the QR code after being scanned during the beginner onboarding process has been resolved.
• Built-in-music player removed.
o Customer feedback suggested using external music players of their choice was preferred. The built-in Spotify player has been removed and now any music player (Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music, etc.) can be used.

SKULLY FENIX AR Helmet Code v2.1.0

Improvements include:

• Fix for Bluetooth® audio playback.
o Music playing while a voice command was performed would often times not resume. This has been identified and fixed.
• Fix for text-to-speech not working after update to FW (“firmware”) v2.0.9. (What I call speechless below)
o The text-to-speech module stopped working for some users after updating OTA (“over-the-air”). This has been identified and fixed.

Also found some release notes for what was said to be addressed in 2.0.9 which I loaded and it made the helmet go speechless and they claim to now fix in 2.1.0 as mentioned above. The below fixes in 2.0.9 are rear camera HUD enhancements but if that improved after I loaded 2.0.9 I can't say that I saw any improvements as they claim below.

SKULLY FENIX-AR Helmet Code v2.0.9

Improvements include:

• Updated warp map for rear view camera image.
o The warp map is responsible for manipulating the rear-view camera image to be displayed properly within the HUD. Specific improvements include:
§ Image is flatter.
§ Image is centered.

Android Phone App v2.0.6

Improvements include:

• Fix for API incompatibility on Android 9.0+.
o Users may be seeing an API incompatibility message in the Android phone's display using the App.
o This API incompatibility has been fixed and is backward compatible for all older versions of Android.
• Built-in-music player removed.
o Customer feedback suggested using external music players of their choice was preferred. The built-in Spotify player has been removed and now any music player (Spotify, Pandora, Google Play, etc.) can be used.
o Any issues should be reported through our customer service support email address and include the model of phone and version of the Android operating system being used.
So they fixed exactly what you told them was wrong in your video review.

It is my opinion that Skully knew what a piece of junk they had from the beginning and decided to ship it out the door regardless. With that kind of attitude they won’t be in business for the long term.
Two Lane Highway

June 01, 2019, 09:41:40 AM
Reply #41
Offline

HDBitchin

Administrator
Here are some teardown pictures of the Skully Fenix AR helmet that were shared with me by LiveMap. As said previously in this thread, the Skully helmet that I used was loaned to me to do my review after it was purchased by the CEO of LiveMap. Just as any good company would do, you buy your competitor's product and review it operationally and tear it down mechanically to see how it was engineered.


Skully Fenix AR Battery




Skully Fenix AR Circuit Card Assembly and Battery Caddy




Close Up View of Skully Fenix AR Circuit Card Assembly




Skully Fenix AR Circuit Card Assy and Battery Caddy




Skully Fenix AR Helmet and LiveMap HUD Helmet




Disassembly of Skully Fenix AR Helmet




Air Vent Channel Removed from Skully Fenix AR




Padding Removed from Skully Fenix AR Helmet Shell showing speaker wires and interconnect card




Skully Fenix AR Interconnect Card Inside Helmet




Skully Fenix AR Speaker Connections



This thread on HDBitchin and my YouTube video (below) were actually shared on the Skully Facebook page. Not by me. I would not do that to any company especially since the review revealed negative operational and design shortcomings.

To my surprise Skully never removed the links to my video or this thread on HDBitchin from their Facebook page.  The thread and video were shared by someone else that found them. I am surprised that Skully never removed the links. The funny thing was that at least one "Fan Boy" made 4 separate Facebook comments about how I was trying to unfairly discredit Skully Technologies for my own personal gain. Then guess what? All the things written in this review and what I said in my YouTube video review were listed in release notes for the 2.1.0 firmware. Did 2.1.0 resolve things? I don't know since the helmet has been sent to the owner (LiveMap). I know that LiveMap did the 2.1.0 update to their Skully but haven't heard if they saw improvements.

Skully might have solved their operational issues with the new 2.1.0 OTA (over the air) software update but keep in mind the HUD display that they use is too small to be useful and in bright sunlight it washes out making it even more useless. You can't fix those hardware design shortcomings with firmware. In other words, you can't fix hardware with software. Would I buy the Skully Fenix AR? No.


June 03, 2019, 12:15:51 PM
Reply #42
Offline

WantMore

Supporting Member
Well done review. I appreciate the time and effort that it took to do this.
Smoke em if you got em
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