acknowledged as a pioneer of important design in the medical technology industry, BRO wheelchair by scewo ensures that people of restricted mobility meet their personal needs and independence. the award-winning project — honored with designboom’s THE DESIGN PRIZE 2018 — has since then been refigured and developed featuring an elevated self-balancing and stair climbing technology. the smartly operated product ensures safe, comfortable and easy to adjust transfers.
all images courtesy of scewo
founded by four university students from ETH zurich + ZHDK, scewo returns with spinoff design, BRO. following a more futuristic language, the motorized wheelchair marks a world’s first as it combines driving on two wheels when climbing stairs. the sleek seat automatically balances itself ensuring an upright position when ascending, no matter the number of steps. that, while the integrated slider allows height change as desired, whether at home or at a bar. together with the modifiable height, depth and angle of the head support, additional and easier stability for the head and neck is granted
‘I get to give my signature to a product that changes people’s everyday lives for the better. that means more to me than just doing a job. with clearly defined lines and a reduction to the essentials, the design team developed a clear design language. that way, scewo BRO is seen as a new generation of wheelchairs at first glance,’ says simon fanger, head of design at scewo.
BRO’s many features and settings range from specific incline angles to light and speed adjustments, whether on uneven surfaces or indoors. the wheelchair’s sensors and camera transfer images to the user’s smartphone to offer visual access all around. whether driven via the updateable scewo app or the joystick and steering console, the effortless switch between the two gives a flexible and intuitive operation. ‘our goal is to show a complex technology – in a way that provides the observer with a sense of calm and elegance,’ simon describes.
scewo’s success has continued to grow from THE DESIGN PRIZE recognition, developing BRO, and winning further awards. following the review of the council’s 37 member jury panel, BRO wins the 2021 german design gold award in the category ‘excellent product design’.
‘being awarded such a prize confirms us that we have taken the right path. our wheelchair shall not only extend the mobility of wheelchair users but also change the perception in society. this aspect matters a lot to me personally. furthermore, the award shows us that there is still a lot of potential in medical technology. with BRO, we have created a product, which allows a new perspective on the mobility of wheelchair users. by giving such a high priority to design, we want to inspire others in the industry to give more importance to appearance in addition to the functionality,‘ expresses simon.