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Week in Review–January 23rd, 2017

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The Week in Review is a collection of both all the goodness I’ve written during the past week around the internet, as well as a small pile of links I found interesting – generally endurance sports related. I’ve often wondered what to do with all of the coolness that people write, and while I share a lot of it on Twitter and Facebook, this is a better forum for sending it on to y’all. Most times these different streams don’t overlap, so be on the lookout at all these places for good stuff!

So with that, let’s get into the action!

DCRainmaker.com posts in the past week:

Here’s all the goodness that ended up on the main page of DCRainmaker.com this past week.

Saturday: Tour Down Under 2017: Sports Tech Gear Of the Pro Women
Monday: Tour Down Under 2017: Sports Tech Gear Of the Pro Men
Wednesday: Tour Down Under 2017: A look at the Satalyst Racer Tracking System
Thursday: An Update on the Mio SLICE: How to get your slice of PAI
Saturday: Spectating the 2017 Tour Down Under

Sports Tech Deals:

Ok, to be precise – a singular deal.  The Fenix3 HR is down $50, from $549 to $499.  It’s a one-week sale that Garmin is running, through January 28th.  Honestly, I don’t see any reason why you’d want to purchase the Fenix3 HR at $499 vs the newly announced Fenix5 at $599.  I mean, I suppose, but no, not really.  If they were $449, that’d make a lot more sense to me for a legit sale – and if Garmin really wanted to move units – $399.  In any case, you can hit up the deal here, just click the optical HR versions from the drop-down.  Free US shipping and all.

YouTube Videos I Published:

Here’s some YouTube goodness that I published this past week:

Stuff that I found interesting around the interwebs:

Here’s a not-so-small smattering of all the random things that I stumbled on while doing my civic duty to find the end of the Internet.

1) The coolest Apple Watch charging stand ever: Yes, really.  Only $15! And yes, I’ve most definitely ordered it. (via The Verge)

image

2) Results from Cycling Training Software Survey: You can hit up the full PDF at the link.  I linked to this survey about 3 weeks ago.  Keep in mind things are probably a bit skewed since the initial target audience was Golden Cheetah users (which tend to be more technical in nature).  Still, some good nuggets in there.

3) GoPro might realize 360°/VR plans? We already knew about Karma coming back next month (or, the announcement next month), but there are remaining hints from the CEO again talking about VR/360 in what appears to be a more consumer focused way.  You’ll remember last year (2016) at CES he noted a consumer-focused unit coming out, but that never seemed to materialize.

4) Lily drone being sued by San Francisco District Attorney: You probably saw my tweet about the Lily drone project going under (but people are getting refunds).  A pretty big deal for a project that raised $30 Million, and looked to be an interesting sport entrant.  However, the backstory about the city going after them is far more interesting.  And I agree – they completely and totally faked their promo video.  Nobody would have ever bought the thing if they showed what footage looked like then, or heck, even now.

5) Company plans to open more airport gyms: Realistically, I don’t see this taking off much in most US domestic-focused airports – the layovers just aren’t that long.  However, for major international hubs – it may just work.  You might remember one of my past airport workouts (airside) at a similar facility in Dubai.

6) NYC Citi Bikes are getting lasers: Yes folks, frickin’ lasers!

7) Fitbit, but for elephants: Yup, activity trackers have officially arrived. (via Stephanie)

8) Parisian Gym Boat to Cruise Seine: Well, eventually…maybe…probably not.  But it’s a cool concept nonetheless!

9) Fitbit plans App Store ‘ASAP’: No surprise there.  The real question will be how the Pebble acquisition fits into it all.

Three Sports Tech Companies Hiring:

While I virtually never post job opportunities in the sports tech world, but here I have three different companies who have noted openings.  The common thread was how difficult it is to find the right resources with a legit sports background, especially developer focused (which all these are).  Meaning, it’s one thing to have a developer roughly understand cycling – but another thing to be a passionate cyclist who understands the nuances of it.  In any case, three of note:

Wahoo Fitness – Looking for developers (plus a few other positions, but really looking for developers).

Garmin – Looking for new Connect IQ program lead – the whole thing (No, nothing bad happened to the previous/first person – he’s made a career change upwards in position, to a non-profit).  In Kansas, but note there are other fitness positions listed on the site.

Today’s Plan – Looking for developers, most notably out of Australia, but open to remote folks.

You can whack the links above to find out more details.  If I see some interest in posting a round-up from time to time, I’ll note it.  Given most people that visit or read this page are huge fitness tech fans – it seems like the right combo.

Sports Technology Software/Firmware Updates This Week:

Each week I quickly highlight some of the new firmware, app, software and website service updates that I see go out. If you’re a sports technology company and release an update – shoot me a quick note (just one liners are perfect, or Tweet it at me is even better) and I’ll make mention of it here. If I don’t know about it, I won’t be able to post about it. Sound good?  Oh – and if you want to get a head start on things, this page is a great resource for watching Garmin firmware updates.

Garmin Vivoactive HR Firmware Update: New Connect IQ version, plus boatload of fixes.

Garmin Forerunner 35 Firmware Update: Minor tweaks, adds.

Garmin Vivosmart HR BETA Firmware Update: Bunch of random improvements.

Thanks for reading!

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36 Comments

  1. Trenchdog

    Editorial note, item 4. on Lily links to the GoPro-story on Engadget instead!

  2. Sal

    Yesterday I spent 1 hour on the net looking for a AW-charging stand that allows night-mode.
    I didn’t find anything I liked. Either too expensive or too ugly.
    And today you write about that cool and nerdy stand! Just ordered! :-)

  3. Mark Liversedge

    Hi Ray,

    The survey was deliberately NOT posted to GC users (we did a separate survey on the GC forum)

    It was posted to wattage, slowtwitch, here and twitter.

    Cheers

    Mark

    • Ahh, gotchya. Though, I’d argue posting to Wattage more or less hits the same target audience. ;)

      Don’t get me wrong, it’s really hard to get a wide net for such a survey. The challenge with Wattage/ST – and even to an extent here – is the high-tech element of the participants. Or maybe it’s more hard-core. Sometimes one in the same.

  4. Harriet

    The Blaze lights have been around in London for a while now (they even got a promo slot at the Six Day at the Velodrome!) and they are awesome. I was pretty skeptic at first, but as a bike commuter they work really well- pedestrians are less likely to step out in front of you, and if a faster cyclist is overtaking you can see. An example of Kickstarter done right.

  5. Aldo

    Any news on the new Technogym $$$$ bike trainer?

    link to technogym.com

    Not that I am planning to buy one, but interested to know why it cost so much more than the others.

    • Interesting. Had never heard of it till this very post.

    • David

      That looks interesting
      Will be keen to see how it compares with the Neo

    • Went through some images and it looks rather more like KICKR with but built in optical powermeter and thin aluminium disk with electromagnets as resistance system. Aside of nice looking design It is most likely will behave like a KICKR but with less inertia (no heavy flywheel) but due to a built in powermeter might be more accurate in power measurements department.

  6. Quick and minor correction – the beta firmware update is for the Vivosmart HR+.

  7. David

    What the software usage survey doesn’t seem to differentiate is active use of multiple software packages v’s passive use.

    I use Garmin Connect but only as an auto upload site (as that’s the easiest thing to configure my Garmin watch / bike computer to do), I don’t actually ever really visit connect to “use” it. I just get it to auto-magically pass stuff on to TP, Strava or whatever other software I actually use to analyse or plan (or check segments against friends) on. Not saying its a big issue with the survey, but I would be interested in how many Golden Cheetah/Strava/TP etc users actually use connect for anything more than an auto-upload service.

    • Mark Liversedge

      The real point here was to identify the tools that users use, not necessarily the tools they use most often.

      The key insight from that section is about the number of tools people use. They are rarely using just 1, more likely they are using 3 or 4. So anyone making software needs to ensure it plays well with others.

      Mark

    • Kyle Polansky

      I completely agree. I use GC almost exclusively to upload and make courses. It also serves as a good archive since the original files are downloadable. However, I can’t remember the last time I’ve used the UI for something meaningful.

    • Well every vendor understands TCX format so there should not be much of a problem in understanding training results. Absence of recognized and all encompassing format for training plan and workouts is a different thing though.

  8. Job opportunities is quite an interesting section for the Weekly Review, as long as it does not take much of your time.

  9. Fabio Adurno

    Hi,

    I remember a while ago you where preparing the review of 4iii and ROTOR 2INPower power meters, any chance to get them anytime soon?
    Cheers,
    Fabio

  10. Jonathan

    Have you heard anything regarding Fitbit’s plan for the Pebble Core? Alternatively, have you heard of a company developing a similar product. It’s a shame that the Core never reached reality; on paper it was a great idea.

  11. SummitAK

    If ever flying through YVR there is an airport gym associated with the airport hotel inside the arrival section of the airport. We just had a 7 hour forced layover there on our way back from Paris compliments of Air France leaving CDG 2 hours late:(

    YVR is interesting because if you are entering US on the next flight you go through US Customs to a special terminal area. We had to work to get an escort out so we could get to hotel/gym. You can visit the gym for $18CDN. It has lockers, showers, sauna, endless pool, hot tub, weight equipment, treadmills and some other cardio stations. It looks out over the terminal and beyond that the city of Vancouver.

    We were very glad to have the option after a long flight and almost equally long layover! Highly recommended.

  12. Anonymous Coward

    Apple also lists some Health & Fitness related open positions.

  13. Dallas

    Hi Ray, just a heads up, I didn’t see it on your site previously, but there has been an Firmware update for the Quark DZero power meters. Apparently a few of the earlier units were shipped with the Bluetooth turned off.

    link to quarq.com

  14. Fat Bob

    Did I miss something? It seems like you haven’t done a hands on review of the Apple Watch Series 2 yet.

    I’m interested in the performance of it’s GPS and water-proofing. Also, does it support tracking lap swims and open water swims? If so, how well does the open-water GPS work?

    • Ryan

      The Apple Watch Series 2 does swim tracking. I’ve used the pool mode and it tracks laps accurately. I actually think it’s been slightly better for me than the V800, 920XT, and 735XT that I have also used. It also has an open-water mode, but I’ve not yet tried it. In addition to the built in app, there are two third party apps (that I’m aware of) that track swims indoors and outdoors as well. Swim.com and MySwimPro. Both offer a few more features than the built in app.

      Beyond the swim stuff, the GPS has been fair for me. I compared it to a 920xt and a 735xt and they tended to be within a couple of tenths of a mile for me. I never went indepth to see which GPS track was most accurate though. I’ve also been impressed with the optical heart rate on the series 2. It’s worked better for me than the 735xt did, but I know optical heart rate can be a bit subjective. The heart rate does seem slow to recover from intervals, so for those workouts a chest strap is still in order.

      Just my .02

  15. davie

    Garmin released an unexpected update for Edge 510 about 2 weeks ago.

    some evidence that it screws up devices once installed and causes issues. I have already noticed on mine that if I adjust backlight prior to starting a ride, the “back” button from the backlight adjust has dissapeared. Only way to cancel out of that screen is to start and cancel a ride.

    Very poor quality control. suggest to all that you don’t install.

  16. Ramunas

    Hi Ray,
    Tried to reach you but unsuccessfully so far. Would you be interested in participating as a speaker or moderator at a big annual sporting event ? You can find more details in an email I send a couple of days back.
    Let me know,
    Ramunas

  17. Joshua Bean

    What’s going on with the podcast ?

  18. Mr. T

    Ever since the update, my Garmin Vivoactive HR has been acting up. It randomly stops during my runs — frequently and it also doesn’t count my activity steps towards my overall total. I wonder if it’s just me or are others having problems.

  19. Martin Chmiel

    speaking of HRV,

    Just noticed that Fitpal has rebranded to Puulse
    link to fitpal.com

    Ray, have you gotten your Kickstarter unit yet? I’m looking forward to seeing Puulse’s ability to measure HRV and pair that to other devices such as Garmins, etc.

  20. Dale C

    LOL to the VAHR “fixing getting stuck on the update spinner”. When my VAHR got this update, it completely froze on the ‘update complete’ screen and wouldn’t respond to any inputs. Had to let the battery die before hooking it back to the charger and it came back to life.

    Wonder if this update will fix the HR monitor? Hasn’t been super accurate during workouts as of late. I’ve done indoor rowing and cycling on a trainer and half my workout will show my HR around 80 or so instead of 150+ where it actually is. Can’t be the stuck-on-cadence bug, at least not for rowing.

  21. Don

    Any plans to review the New Balance RunIQ watch?
    It’s got Strava.

    • Yup. One appears to be sitting in my US mail forwarding box, and I’ll probably ship it over today or tomorrow.

      Note that the Strava on the unit is merely the standard Strava Android Wear app – so no different whether you have it on this watch or any other watch. They’re just simply pre-loading it.