We’ve all heard about and seen the concept cars which get released at motor shows around the world to demonstrate the vision for the future from the car company. Late last year Husqvarna released a concept hedge trimmer and EFTM discussed this and the future of the powered garden tool industry with Stephen Clark, General Manager Marketing and Business Intelligence at Husqvarna.
Several years ago I visited the Husqvarna Factory and Museum in the town of Husqvarna in Sweden – this gave me an interesting insight into both the history of the company and the leaps and bounds being made in electric garden tools.
I tested chainsaws and trimmers both battery and petrol to compare. And while the biggest jobs are probably still destined to be done by petrol power, the vast majority can now be done with a high quality battery-powered tool.
I’ve tested this at home with a hedge trimmer – mind-blowing how quiet yet powerful they are.
On this weeks episode of Your Tech Life I spoke with Stephen Clark from Husqvarna about how fast battery power was evolving he told me “technology is developing very rapidly, the power that’s coming out of the battery cells and how we can utilise that to get the performance and run time out of battery garden tools that are basically equal to the equivalent level performance on petrol machines”
But it’s not just about the power and evolution of the power plant. Our cities are changing, and loud petrol motors don’t mix with early mornings or some locations, Stephen Clark says “people are wanting quieter machines, fewer emissions, being able to operate in enclosed spaces, close to hospitals, nursing homes and schools where they don’t want the noise disruption. Battery is ideal for that, and now they can get the performance by the combination of batteries, motors and the technology that Husqvarna has been able to develop means that we’ve got a viable product option to satisfy those needs”
Enter “Project Ramus” – this is an all out concept of a future hedge trimmer. A lightweight tool where the battery can be worn around the waist and an augmented reality helmet can help guide the work and monitor the tool itself.
And some of that will soon be a reality in products – “bluetooth connectivity for battery products, where a head up display can become a reality showing things like battery level or power output” Clark said.
But how do you get rusted on petrol lovers to understand the power that battery now has? They’ve just got to try it. Husqvarna is always trying to get them in the hands of the professionals who most times will then realise the power and benefits and move to battery power.
Unfortunately, cheaper “electric” products might be muddying the waters. Clark told EFTM “there are people out there that have supplied product that doesn’t use the right combination of battery power, battery cells and electronic management systems to get that performance”
You get what you pay for after all.
So – the future is one where your hedge trimmer guides you virtually through the task at hand, knowing what you’re doing and what is next – what a time!