Week in Review–March 27th, 2017


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:

Sunday: Week in Review–March 19th, 2017
Monday: 5 Random Things I Did This Weekend
Tuesday: Best Action Cam 2017: GoPro Hero5 Black vs Garmin VIRB Ultra 30
Thursday: DCR Facebook Live Q&A Tomorrow–Friday March 24th!
Thursday: Garmin Fenix 5/5S/5X In-Depth Review
Sunday: My 2,500th post! Here’s 25 blasts from the past!

Lots more good stuff planned this week! Finally able to post/clear some of the in-depth review backlog I’ve been working on, woot!

DCR Q&A Live Stream Recorded Session:

In case ya missed it last week, here ya go!  There’s not a ton you need to watch the video portion for, so it makes for a great background listen if you want 90 minutes of tech Q&A (plus, the audio quality is good this time!).

YouTube Videos I Published:

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

Sports Tech Deals

Continuing the Garmin plan for basically a sale every week, the Fenix 3HR is on sale this week (ends Apr 1st):

Garmin Fenix 3HR – $100 (now $449) – My in-depth review here

I wouldn’t be a buyer at that price. Nope. Try harder next time Garmin ($399).

Plus three previous minor sales of note:

Garmin Forerunner 25 – $20 off (now $119) – My detailed post here
Garmin Forerunner 35 (optical HR) – $30 off (now $169) – My detailed post here
Garmin Forerunner 235 (optical HR) – $50 off (now $279) – My in-depth review here

All sales run through April 1st, 2017.  I’m not really expecting anything of note here beyond Garmin continuing their newly rolled out 2017 mantra of ‘always have something kinda-sorta on sale’. Basically, following a page from the TomTom playbook. Also – I’d point out that unless you’ve got some very specific FR235 features you want, the Vivoactive HR is really the better buy.

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) What happens if you lose your Fitbit…and someone finds it: Ok, I didn’t expect that, or more specifically – didn’t expect the sheer volume they deal with.  Nicely done.

2) Bike Computer Battery Life Test: Shane over at GPLama did a nifty little battery run down test of a bunch of bike computers.  Interesting to see the times, and just how darn close some of them were.

3) Swim fin racing – it’s a thing: When you’ve been around the block a few times, you assume you’ve seen most things.  But somehow, I’ve never seen this.  Ever.  This is actually a thing.  Found it on this Slowtwitch thread, along with another ‘thing’ I never knew was a thing – scuba racing (see the bottles in their hands).  Mind…blown.

4) Tinder for cyclists: Not exactly an area I have experience in. But the numerous industry folks in this post do!

5) ITU Triathlon Chief’s thoughts on Superleague: Interesting to see them comment.  Some valid points raised – even if it may come off as being snippy since they didn’t do the event. (via Slowtwitch)

6) Adidas sues Asics over software patents: Sigh. How much money is Adidas spending on this, versus, you know…actually making their sports tech products better? (via Ian B.)

7) A simple way to keep track of fresh GoPro batteries: Kinda brilliant. I try and keep different batteries in different compartments/pocket, but sometimes if in a rush or tight spot, I’ll forget. This is smarter. (via ISO 1200 Twitter)

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 Fenix Chronos BETA firmware update: Adds bike light support, other tweaks.

Garmin Vivofit 3 firmware update: Improves BLE connectivity.

GoPro Hero5 firmware updates: Improves SD card support

Thanks for reading!


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  1. Martin Mortensen

    Swim fin racing and Scuba racing is some of the most hilarious swimming I have ever seen!

    About the battery test, I noted that the weather has a quite large effect on the barometric altimeters! Is this not a reason for choosing GPS-based altimeters?

  2. My Garmin 810’s battery life significantly dropped even after a year. I never tested it but I would guess it dropped to about 60-70%.

  3. Goncalo

    Concerning the swim fin racing: wow. (will take my phone to the pool just to show to my coach…errr…. better not, don’t want to give her ideas)

  4. Eli

    For the ASUS vs Asics thing, may not be that useful a link as I get:
    To continue reading, you need a subscription to WIPR. Start a subscription to WIPR for £455.

    link to bizjournals.com
    link to ipmetrics.net

    Seems like it worked out well when they did the same thing to underarmor earlier. They probably just want a license fee.

    • Aaron

      If I read correctly, Adidas is essentially claiming to patent any system that includes live tracking of fitness workouts?

    • Eli

      Not sure, the full list of patents they are basing on isn’t on the news sites

    • Ian Berman

      Sorry about the link. It went from free to paid over the last few days. You can see the formal complaint here: link to bizjournals.com

      The suit centers around 10 Adidas patents, 5 of which ( 7,480,512, 7,805,150, 7,805,149, 8,068,858, 8,858,399) Adidas got when it acquired Austin, TX-based Bones in Motion for $5M in February 2007. The remaining 5 appear to be from a husband & wife who are inventors on the side. These are the Technikka Connexion patents ( 8,579,767, 8,725,276, 8,814,755, 8,968,156, 9,415,267)

      All 10 patents were originally filed between 2001-2004, and thus predate all the smartphone app makers. Some even predate the Garmin 101 (first GPS watch) launched in March 2003.

      The patents cover very broad concepts (patents are purposely broad) such as:
      * a GPS device that can track time, distance, pace and can wirelessly connect to shoe pods & heart rate monitors.
      * WAN (e.g. cellular) uploading of data, plotting data on a map, audio readout of statistics, audio notification for incoming calls
      * downloading/storing a training plan on a GPS device
      * playing songs at specific waypoints
      * real time activity tracking of other athletes
      * racing against your past performance or that of a 3rd party’s. (ghosting)
      * view & rate routes on a map
      * dynamic selection of workouts based on past performance
      * Comparison of performance & health data

      In the broadest sense, these patents can be used to go after Asics’ Runtastic & MiCoach, UnderArmor’s MyFitnassPal/MapMyFitness/Endomondo, (already settled), Nike/Apple, Garmin, Suunto, Polar, and every other GPS related company.

      Personally, I think that some of the more important patents can be invalidated by prior art, but I’m not a lawyer, so who knows…

      Adidas has been on the receiving end of patent lawsuits covering clothing tech, so this is just business as usual in the industry.

      At any rate, Adidas can hold just about any competitor hostage for ransom with these patents. I guess it was $5M (plus whatever it paid for the Technikka patents) very well spent.

      Of course, for consumers this whole thing sucks.

    • Ian Berman

      Oops- disregard my mention of MiCoach. That’s obviously an Adidas, not Asics product.

  5. Gonzalo

    Fin-swimming was my first sport. 02:44 in 200m my best time whenIi was 16.

    There is also Underwater Rugby, Hockey, Underwater Orienteering , Spearfishing

  6. dbo

    I’m in France over Easter, in Paris. Will things be open? What markets will be open, if any?

  7. Eli

    The battery life test is very off for a major use case. I’m talking about using the gps for navigation. I know with my 810 if the GPS is left on the map screen during a ride battery life is much worse then if I avoid that screen as much as possible

  8. yancey arrington

    SRM Pc8 firmware? Its been out since March 15th with no mention.
    link to srm.de

    • Grr, I had that on my list. Doh. Will try and remember for next week.

      Generally speaking, I track changes based on subscription to an RSS feed. So sans-RSS feed, I usually miss it.

  9. Andy

    Nashbar had the Garmin Vector 2 on sale for $699 last week. At this price what would you think about this power meter?

  10. Brad

    That swim fin racing looks like something that should be on ESPN 8 – The Ocho.