My 2015 ANT+ Symposium Session & Panel Videos


I’ve been delivering a session at the ANT+ Symposium now for 4 years. Kinda crazy.  While technically the ANT+ Symposium is focused on ANT+, the reality is that almost every major player in the sport technology world is there – talking about all sorts of sports tech.  Be it hardware makers or software companies, most send some sort of contingent.

In fact, despite thoughts to the contrary – this year was actually bigger than last year, with more companies represented and more folks there.

In the past, I’ve delivered a session that was sorta a ‘State of the State’ type speech.  A bit of ‘The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly’.  In other words, I iterated through different topic areas that I wanted to discuss and broach with the greater sports tech forum.  Much of that was based on feedback from readers.  Be it things companies did well, and those that they needed to work on.  None of it limited to ANT+, everyone and everything in the industry was fair game.

This year though it was time to change things up.  So instead I delivered a session on how to launch a product.  Totally different, yet something I’ve totally wanted to rant on deliver for a while.

But that’s not all!  I also did a panel discussion on sports tech usage with some really smart folks – but let’s not get ahead of ourselves yet.

Primary Session: How to launch a product


This first session is my dedicated ‘How to Launch’ a product presentation.  While in theory aimed at companies, I think most consumers will be interested in how things really work.  This is a bit of a ‘How the sausage is made’ post.  I take very specific ‘case study’ examples from a number of recent product launches and walk through exactly what companies did that was right and wrong.

I talk about how and why a company can launch a product properly – and the discussion isn’t just limited to how I cover products, but how different segments of the media covers products.

My hope is two-fold:

A) That companies learn from some of these lessons and optimize their product launches to make it easier for consumers to understand the products.

B) That consumers become more aware of product launches and can spot when something is being paid for behind the scenes, or when information seems skewed or missing.

In any case, onwards – go forth and watch the sausage be made:

Like I said, totally different than years past – but honestly a bit more fun for me to deliver.

As an aside, a few times you heard me reference another presentation from Paul Wilke, that was directly before me.  He gave a different point of view, one from a PR company’s standpoint.  I’d highly encourage companies to watch it, but I think consumers can get a lot from it too.

For those that want to download a PDF of the presentation, it’s available here.

Panel Discussion: The Quantified Self: Capturing, Connecting and Interpreting


I’ll be honest, I’m not typically a big panel discussion kinda guy.  Secretly…I kinda usually hate them.  I find the questions and answers to often be awkward and forced.  However, this turned out far better than I expected (actually I think it turned out quite good) – and I think we had some truly interesting discussions and insights.  And I think all of us genuinely enjoyed discussing things and bouncing ideas off of each other.

On the panel was Jon Bruner (Data journalist and Editor-at-large for O’Reilly Media), Paul Dorotich (High Performance Coaching/Olympics team coach), Haley MacLeod (PhD candidate researching the potential role of technology in the lives of people with rare diseases).  Hosting the discussion was Bryan O’Rourke.  All of these folks had their own discussions, of which you can find on the ANT+ Video page (hopefully they’ll create a playlist of all the sessions).  The full bios of each are here.

The panel discussion covered a lot of areas – but really focused on the data side of these devices.  As well as pieces on accuracy and what accuracy really means to different audiences.  For example for Paul as an Olympics coach it means one thing compared to Haley working with someone in a medical realm.  We also discussed privacy and how that works in the platform-driven world of today’s fitness systems.

With that – here we go!  Note, that there’s about 20 minutes of Q&A starting around the 40min marker.

Obviously, I don’t have any slides to share for this one – it’s PowerPoint free!

Finally – if you’re tech minded (or at least sport-tech minded), there’s actually some pretty interesting presentations on how things work within the published videos.  For example, one’s about planned updates or recently implemented updates on various specs (i.e. for FE-C), stuff on how Bluetooth Smart integration works on WASP devices for large-group environments (NPE), and a fair bit more detail on Garmin Connect IQ from the guy that leads that group.  The full schedule was here, most recorded sessions were on Thurs/Friday.

With that – hope you found some tidbits interesting, and enjoyed watching!

(Photos courtesy ANT+ Symposium event folk)


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  1. gingerneil

    I found the individual session you did very informative indeed. It gave a good insight into what goes on in the DCR background before/during/after things actually appear or don’t appear on the blog. I’m still a little confused as to why some things don’t appear and some do (runscribe vs stryde for example) – but everything can’t follow the same pattern…. I wonder if you will make more appearances like this now that you’re full time blogging ?

    • Thanks.

      As for RunScribe vs Stryd, I’m using both concurrently. It’s harder to show links to RunScribe data vs Stryde (since Stryd comes in as power). That said, I try and highlight things randomly. Back a few weeks ago in my Cozumel runs I highlighted RunScribe stuff there. So this weekend, I went for Stryd.

      As for other speaking appearances – perhaps, if the situation/topic is interesting and it works timing-wise.

  2. How to launch a product indeed. I hope some people *cough* are listening.

    And will you be keeping the beard?

  3. Steve

    Typo alert: “something I’ve totally wanted to…delivery for a while”. Pretty sure this should be “deliver”. :-)

  4. Bart

    I went through the PDF of the presentation and everything was common sense to me.
    I’m just a consumer with deep interest in the electronics inside/behind a lot of your reviewed sport devices.
    Do you have an explanation on why some (big) manufactures don’t seem to get the basics of this?
    If there has been spend thousands of $ on development how can the not prepare a good product launch with all of the information (and their competitors) (refereing to your post about the Polar M450 launch).

    Finally bought a Tacx smart vortex after reading the last trainer recommendations post. Thanks!
    As being in Europe no way to support you (except Amazone) because of the shop delay.
    In which category would you place the “product launch/presentation” of the European warehouse?
    (sorry couldn’t resist)

  5. So… I’m guessing Dyno Velo? I do think that regardless of who it is, its better to get a little feedback about problems to solve pre-launch than to have a minor success and then a horde of angry early adopters, but maybe that’s just me.

    In your new role would you be interested in serving as a paid, private consultant to help people not make these mistakes, or would that put you in too much conflict with your very public “impartial” role?

    • No, no interest in paid consulting to these companies – as then it makes it impartial down the line. I’m generally pretty available to chat for free with any company. I usually do so 2-3 times a week with all variety of companies, mostly startups actually (though certainly also with the big ones too). In fact most of the startups you’ve never heard of.

      Of course, I can’t quite chat with every startup out there for hours every day, but in general if it’s something I think would eventually be interesting as a product to people here – I usually make time.

    • And that’s what makes you so valuable to them as well as to us. As a non-paying member of your blog, I have to say that the service that you provide is worth at least 10X what you charge! Thanks again.

    • 10 x $0.00 = $0.00. I’m worth $0. :(


    • Don

      Ray, small thing but you mean the opposite of “impartial” here:

      No, no interest in paid consulting to these companies – as then it makes it impartial down the line.

      Impartial means “not biased; fair and just”. You meant partial or biased or untrustworthy.

    • Sorry, just got distracted half-way through the sentence. Meant to say it wouldn’t make me impartial.

    • Hence, “at least” :) We did make sure to buy lots of cupcakes the last time we were in Paris, though, if that helps.

      Finally finished the 2nd half of the video – thanks for sharing some of these “insider peeks”. Well, they’re technically public, but thanks for promoting them. Its been a very fun market to watch develop, and your insights are among the best in the business.

  6. Mr. T

    Was it hipster day at the symposium? just kidding

  7. Erik

    just watched the ANT+ Symposium Presentation … fantastic behind the scene for do’s and dont’s … and the good insight in sport technik launches …

    Once again many thanks for your Independence and clear words you always writing/speaking


  8. Don


    How did the companies respond to this? Did any come up to you later and say they learned a lot or were they all ambivalent?

    • I got comments from both companies large and small afterwards, especially on the case studies piece. However I tend to hear more from smaller companies that just don’t have enough interaction on a regular basis with the media to understand all the nuances.

      On the bigger companies, they tend to find it interesting in terms of just how to optimize interaction with me. So for them it may be more of a case of ‘How to better interact with DCR’, versus the smaller companies pick it up and can apply it across the board.

  9. Ray

    What a pleasure to see you again and what a fantastic panel. I agree it was better than the usual and always enjoyed your insights.


  10. Yancey arrington

    The FIT basics and roadmaps was pretty interesting. Seems like it shouldn’t be too much of an issue to start recording PM zero offsets within a FIT file? Am i expecting too much?

  11. ChrisO

    Ray, bit of a tangent here but I’m wondering if you know of a cheap standalone device or software (Windows, Android, iOS or Linux) that can do ANT+ to BLE bridging? Much like Trainer Road does but without the monthly sub :-)

  12. This was an amazing information and really look behind the scene that is very interesting. Appreciate you sharing.

  13. Brooks

    I really enjoyed watching this. I think it was great insight to how some of the process works from a “business to media” perspective. I think the quality and openness is a large part of what makes your site successful.

  14. Chris Capoccia

    on private data vs company-owned data: i think services like strava strike a good balance of sharing enough of the data among users for competitive comparisons and aggregate data for strava metro while still anonymizing enough to meet average privacy concerns.
    on strava + my fitness pal: the cross-over between these two would be an athletic cyclist who is monitoring their weight. i use both. i’m not good enough to be a competitive racer, but i like to think of myself as fairly athletic. i might get to 3500 miles by years’ end. i also have a power meter. i really like that i can log the data with my garmin edge and at the end of the ride have the data go from garmin connect to strava and then calories go into my fitness pal.

  15. MAGNUStm

    Any reason these aren’t on your YouTube page?

    • No particular reason. They posted them on theirs as part of the conference. I could technically download them and re-upload them, but feels a bit weird.

      Personally I’d love to have them on my channel just for consolidation purposes.

  16. Robin

    Hi Ray,
    I watched your “How to launch a product” video and it was a very interesting inside view on the topic.
    Also it reminded me that it is business. Never thought about it this way and reminds me always to do a second thought about a product.

    I agree that the Wahoo Elemnt launch or better your post about it is a good example.
    The small fact than a Wahoo employee just answers all the questions, clarifies if proposals will make it into the product or not was a huge plus for me. In fact it was the reason why I thought that I should by it.
    Unfortunately it is not released yet and I have no release date for my country yet. And also I am quite happy with my Edge 25. And, as you mentioned, the more time goes by after announcement the more unlikely I am not going to buy it.

    I don’t remember when or why I came across your site but I enjoy reading it. Keep it up.

    Best regards, Robin

  17. Ted

    Do you know of any iOS or Android apps that can connect to a wasp data stream and display all the hrm data? It would be even better if it could keep a database of name to ant+ ID, and be able to display as both Bpm and %maxHR?
    I have a friend running a studio who is having problems with her pc software when switching among displays on longer training sessions. It could be user error, but if there was a easy/ cheap way to get another screen to display uncommon stuff on, it may help.
    By the way, she is using the PerformanceIQ software.
    Thanks a bunch