posted on 01 Dec 2018 by chek

A smart bicycle light that explores how Augmented Reality can help cyclists engage with cycling data in a fun manner.


GameLight is a smart bicycle light that overlays a virtual game projected on the ground, within the user’s natural field of view while cycling. The system aims to investigate how to enhance the cycling exertion experience by augmenting it with various game elements presented in different game modes. The system consists of a pico-projector and mobile phone wirelessly connected to cadence, speed and heart rate sensors that serve as input to the virtually projected game to achieve a fun and playful effect while cycling.

We ran a pilot study that compared three conditions:

  1. an “Arcade” mode that implements a virtual coin collecting mechanic,
  2. a “Challenge” mode that provides timed effort challenges, and
  3. riding with cycling data viewed on a smart phone mounted on the bicycle handlebars.

The study has indicated that the augmented game elements resulted in significantly higher levels of flow and increased exercise benefits (heart rate) as compared to conventional cycling. However, there were still valid concerns on the safety of such systems when use in uncontrolled real-world circumstances, as users may be overly engrossed in the augmented visuals. Note though, that the original intention was actually to enhance the safety of cyclists in the park, with a much more visible projected light that can attract the attention of other shared path users.



Desheng Zhao, Jeannie Su Ann Lee, Chek Tien Tan, Alexandru Dancu, Simon Lui, Songjia Shen, and Florian ‘Floyd’ Mueller. 2019. GameLight - Gamification of the Outdoor Cycling Experience. In Companion Publication of the 2019 on Designing Interactive Systems Conference 2019 Companion (DIS ‘19 Companion). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 73-76. DOI:


This work was supported by funding from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) GameLab.