KT Skylife releases lightweight electric wheelchair for vulnerable road users

By Kim Joo-heon Posted : January 31, 2023, 14:28 Updated : December 12, 2023, 22:57

[Courtesy of KT Skylife]

SEOUL -- KT Skylife, a satellite broadcasting provider affiliated with South Korea's major telecom company KT, rolled out a lightweight electric wheelchair that would help reduce the inconvenience of people with mobility problems. The smart wheelchair can travel up to 45 kilometers (27.9 miles) on a single charge and can be loaded into a small passenger car's trunk.
The electric wheelchair weighing 30 kilograms (66.1 pounds) is called Auto Wheel. Using a Bluetooth-based controller, users can move around and rotate without any difficulties. The device equipped with an electromagnetic brake and an anti-collision sensor can detect obstacles and generate warning sounds in case of emergency. It automatically stops before the collision. It takes about two hours to fully recharge the battery.
KT Skylife said in a statement on January 31 that Auto Wheel was released. The company has worked with Hycore, a domestic robot control technology developer, for the development of the electric wheelchair. "We hope Auto Wheel will become an innovative product that enables vulnerable road users to enjoy the value of free mobility," KT Skylife's marketing service head Jung Hoon was quoted as saying. Discount benefits are being provided for the product which originally costs 3.69 million won ($2,996).
Electric wheelchairs are mostly used by disabled and elderly people who are unable to freely move. Government data showed that about 90,000 South Koreans were using electric wheelchairs in 2020. According to data released by market research firm Grand View Research, the global wheelchair market which stood at $4.8 billion in 2022 is projected to grow at an average annual rate of 7.2 percent from 2023 to 2030. 
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