Author Topic: Skylock  (Read 5403 times)

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Offline MFX

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Skylock
« on: January 12, 2015, 11:30:57 am »
I got spammed with this on my facebook page https://skylock.cc/ It's technically crowdfunded as they say your card will be charged immediately, not when ready for despatch. Several concerns/criticisms :-

" After a lot of testing, we realized that our Bluetooth antenna already provides ample range for theft detection (up to 3 blocks in dense urban areas with line-of-sight, and up to 1 block radius when inside a cafe). "

What even when it''s effectively housed inside a solid metal Fariday cage? Unless the Bluetooth module is housed outside the steel body which would make it vulnerable to vandalism. There seems to be a high chance of a failed attack leaving the electronics inoperable and leaving you with no way of unlocking your bike.

....

Later found this :-
" Our objective is therefore to port the antenna from the main board. We are solving that issue with a custom tuned antenna specific for our application. Having an external antenna will give the best performances and range for the user. While this development is more challenging and will require us to do a full FCC certification, we believe it’s the best wireless solution for Skylock. "

So not a problem they've solved yet then?

Also how do they have "triple redundancy to the motor to ensure that the motor is reliable and does not jam while actuating. "

Do they have three motors? seems unlikely particularly looking at the PCB design and the space available and if one motor jammed then it would prevent the others form working unless there was a complicated clutch arrangement which would reduce reliability even further.

Then
" Q. Can I change my key code?
you can change it up to three times a year. "

That's pretty rubbish, why impose any limit?

" The lock is designed to whitstand rain and light snow but not submerging in water or being covered in ice or snow"

Also pretty rubbish.

Also most of the images look like computer renders, does a physical working one actually exist?

What happens if the electronics fails for any other reason?

Questions, questions. Anyone else have any thoughts on this?
 

Offline magetoo

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2015, 06:10:15 pm »
Well, that's an unfortunate name...

Then
" Q. Can I change my key code?
you can change it up to three times a year. "

That's pretty rubbish, why impose any limit?

Part of the business model?  It has a bunch of "connected" features, so I assume you'd have to have some sort of subscription going as well.  So unlimited changing of codes might be something they think they can charge for.  I agree it makes no sense otherwise.

And as with any product that uses crypto, if it becomes successful, expect that someone will find a flaw in their implementation and exploit it.

On the other hand, mechanical bike locks aren't perfect either.  So maybe it's good enough if you need the features, like for bike sharing?
 

Offline codeboy2k

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2015, 04:09:04 am »
lock+app =  OK.
+ connected... no thanks!

What happens when they go out of business? How dependant on the cloud is it?  the website text doesn't explain.

 

Offline MFX

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2015, 06:58:52 am »
I don't think it's cloud dependent although I think they originally hoped it would be, they switched from WiFi to Bluetooth, I assume the original intention was for the lock to be able to connect to public WiFi and hence work through the cloud but that hasn't worked out due to the web interface logins on many such hotspots :-

"The internals of Skylock have also undergone major changes.  We made the tough decision to drop WiFi in favor or a new Bluetooth 4.2 radio.  After a lot of testing, we realized that our Bluetooth antenna already provides ample range for theft detection (up to 3 blocks in dense urban areas with line-of-sight, and up to 1 block radius when inside a cafe).  In addition we found that most public WiFi hotspots have login screens that use a web interface, making it impossible for our Skylock to directly connect to the network. WiFi also consumes much more power, especially while searching for networks.  Instead, we chose a system-on-chip radio that will be capable of Bluetooth 4.2, which connects to the internet using an IPv6/6LoWPAN protocol This new standard is designed to connect battery powered Internet of Things (IoT) devices to the internet.  What a perfect technology match!  As this technology matures we hope to use this as a means to connect Skylock to the internet in a more efficient manner."

So it's now a simple peer to peer connection.
 

Offline Yago

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2015, 09:28:18 am »
Bit of a funny spot for the product to be in.

$159 is the price of a cheapo bike, and no lock will secure an expensive bike as groupset and wheels cost an arm and leg.

Too expensive for cheap bike and no good for expensive bike... mr inbetween?
 

Offline MFX

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2015, 09:43:33 am »
I guess it fills a market niche for hipsters who can say "hey look at my cool iPhone controlled bike lock", while riding a cool retro vintage bike.
 

Offline Yago

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2015, 10:13:39 am »
I guess it fills a market niche for hipsters who can say "hey look at my cool iPhone controlled bike lock", while riding a cool retro vintage bike.

Good call, they'll have enough money not to worry about theft anyway(well their parents will!).
If only Skylock could make it beard powered :P
 

Offline MFX

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2015, 05:20:20 am »
Their response to my question on what "triple redundancy to the motor to ensure that the motor is reliable and does not jam while actuating. "  actually meant was :-

"Triple redundancy: 1) full motor feedback using a quadrature encoder. 2) current sensing. 3) time. The motor also goes through a calibration every 50 lock/unlocks."

So all they really mean is they have three ways of knowing the motor isn't turning when it should be. Doesn't really help when you're cold and wet and just want to get your bike unlocked and go home!
« Last Edit: January 15, 2015, 05:26:59 am by MFX »
 

Offline Yago

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2015, 07:03:34 am »
It states the battery life is ten years, is that right? sounds far too long to my limited knowledge of Li.


 

Offline MFX

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2015, 07:29:59 am »
Not sure about battery life. BTW they seem to have deleted all of their "sponsored posts" along with all the replies, seems they don't take criticism well.
 

Offline Yago

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2015, 08:19:17 am »
I am actually a very experienced cyclist, did MTB at high level for >15 Years.

Any lock can be opened, and I am sure that is common knowledge, a lock is there to delay the thief, make it clear to everyone around that a theft is taking place.

In short a tactic is to get you to leave the bike there, and attack the lock in the quiet dark hours.
Superglue, another lock, anything to prevent the owner taking the bike until dark.

With Skylock, it seems that everyman is equipped by nature to achieve this.
If ones urinates into the lock and knackers the RF section, it's game over.
 

Offline MFX

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Re: Skylock
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2015, 02:17:42 am »
There's also all sorts of things that could be squirted in to knacker the motor as well unless they somehow completely seal it, but they've stated it's only rain resistant, nor waterproof.
 


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