Week in Review–July 30th, 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–July 23rd, 2017
Sunday: Tour de France 2017- The Finish in Paris
Monday: 5 Random Things I Did This Weekend
Tuesday: Best Bike Computer 2017: Garmin Edge 520 vs Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Thursday: DCR Facebook Live Q&A Tomorrow –July 28th!
Sunday: In case ya missed it: DCR Live Q&A Recording Available

In general, this week would definitely be categorized as a ‘prep week’ ahead of a busy week. It’ll actually flip-flop like this for the next 3-4 weeks till Eurobike. August is gonna be full of goods!

Sports Tech Deals This Week:

Below is the current list of deals in the sports tech realm.

ProductSale PriceAmazonSale Notes
HoverAir X1 Drone - $80 off!$349Note: There's virtually always a $80 coupon that can be clicked on the Amazon page.

New this week include $20 off the GoPro Hero5 Session, and 20% off GoPro accessories (except Karma accessories for some bizarre reason.)

Also of note is that the Wahoo ELEMNT rebate ends tomorrow, as does the $100 off the Edge 1000.  And the Cycliq sale ends Tuesday.

YouTube Videos I Published:

Here’s some YouTube goodness that I published this past week, don’t forget to subscribe!

Well…no YouTube this time, but on Facebook instead (you don’t need an account to watch).

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) GoPro’s Tour de France 2017 Final Edit: They did a bunch of mini-edits throughout the Tour (see the full playlist here), but here’s the final edit for this year’s Tour.  It’s a bit different in tone than past years, but more of a storyline this time.  I saw the small team of these guys around often, and they hustled their ass off on every stage.

2) Wait, TomTom’s dead too? This is definitely not the best month for sports tech.  With Recon bowing out last week, insinuations from TomTom’s own investor call says they may be exiting the sports tech portion of their business.  This would definitely be a blow to the inexpensive end of the market (for which TomTom thrives).  Their challenge though is gaining interest in North America, alongside finding ways to get mainstream/tech press excited about their products (which again, are incredibly good values for the prices).

3) Fitbit’s app store will be based on Pebble’s SDK: No real surprise here, but nice to see the confirmation of it.

4) Chief Commissaire who disqualified Sagan calls for video reviews: Well then, don’t be bringing in logic too fast now!

5) Another look at the tracking airplanes of the Tour de France: I talked a little bit about this during my TdF Dimension Data behind the scenes post, but this video showing the trace of the airplane as it follows the route is pretty darn cool. (via Rodrigo)

6) Tour de France Speed and Distance Trends – 1947 – 2017: Super interesting stuff, from where this race sits as far as overall speed, to overall distance per stage.  Fascinating plots by Alex.

7) Rapha set to go for $262 Million USD! Potential buyers include Aston Martin.  It’ll be interesting to see what it actually goes for though, as this seems a bit…over the top…to me. (Via Race Radio)

8) Suunto sees financial recovery in Q2 compared to Q1: Some interesting tidbits in their just released Q2 financial report, which shows them tracking 7% higher than last year. That’s logical, since last year would have been pre-Spartan, whereby people were waiting for new products.  However, what was most interesting was going back to the Q1 report, which I hadn’t seen before to see the huge hit they took in Q1, being down 27% YoY.  But they’ve done good work in 2017 addressing many of the Spartan shortcomings, and so they’re seeing the results of that.  All of the quarterly reports are available here, including full presentations.  Suunto is categorized as ‘Sports Instruments’.

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 VIRB 360 Firmware Update: Improved photo quality, and streaming 4K options (for the co-announced Facebook 4K live streaming functionality).

Garmin Fenix3/Fenix3 HR BETA Firmware Update: Yup, it actually got an update.mostly fixes, though one additional new feature for recording HR data into the files.

Garmin Fenix 5/5S/5X BETA Firmware Updates: A pile of fixes, and some new features.

GoPro Hero5 & Hero5 Session Firmware Update: Adds new QuikStories feature to have autocreated movies ready to go.  Also adds some performance tweaks.

Thanks for reading!

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  1. giorgitd

    Sorry to see negative news about Tom Tom. I’ve been on Garmin for many years, but have almost bought TT just out of curiosity. Products seem solid and the value continues to go up relative to escalating Garmin pricing. Hope that they can find a way forward.

    • the5krunner

      Yep, I think they will find a way forwards.

      As Ray, others (and me) point out the runner/spark IS good and IS good value.

      I don’t think ANYONE who has commented on the TomTom statements knows exactly what products might be the root of the ‘issue’.

      One scenario could be the ‘all the future R&D eggs in the runner/spark basket’ then we might see great things come out of this in 2018 with a runner/spark5

      As Robert (Black?) points out further below, there are still some peripheral bit of functionality that need adding. BUT, as Ray said recently, every user/athlete has similar such peripheral areas of functionality that are important to them. All those little dents of missing functionality add up to a hole in the overall functional offering.

  2. Adriaan

    …question on this Garmin updates…
    Is Garmin done with sw version at 920XT for good? No further updates?
    The sensor settings are really annoying!
    Before starting multi sport activity, all sensors must be enabled. So the device is searching for Speed and Cadence sensor at Swimming leg up to the running leg. And in T1 (after swimming) the device is dropping the connection to HRM-Tri/HRM-Swim, so that one must be reconnected.
    If Garmin exterminated bike profiles, they should set up automatic detection for previously paired sensors and keep those connected till activity is not sent to history…

    • I don’t expect to see any further updates, at least feature updates. Usually you still see some random bug updates here or there, things that might be caught on other platforms and ported back. But at nearly 3 years old, it’s run its course.

    • Adriaan

      Thanks for the answer Ray. And I am sorry for trolling…
      In my opinion, 920XT as a device is much better then 735/935XT together.
      And I got it – it came out 3 years ago.
      But it was and still being used by Pro and hobby triathletes around the globe.
      Nobody found that functionality annoying since then? Or they did and it is just Garmin’s approach to customers?

      Thanks again…and please make a separate section/quick link to the Week in Review series…

    • I think the challenge is that the FR920XT is only better if one likes the larger screen. But if the rectangle screen isn’t ones thing, then I’m not aware of anything it actually does better to be honest.

      Nothing wrong with the FR920XT, as you point out, many triathletes use it. But if we fast forward to a year from now, there will be less triathletes using it and more and more using the Fenix5/FR935/FR735 (which as a lineup are the real successors).

      I do think some people (including myself) found the attempted pairing during the swim (or run to power meters) thing weird – but it never really did anything aside from being an annoyance. Meaning that come the bike it connected properly to sensors, and come the run the same. Not saying Garmin shouldn’t have fixed it, but also just being realistic on what they consider a sunsetted product.

    • Mr T

      It’s interesting. Look at Nike’s Breaking2. All the athletes wear 920xt. There must be something there

    • ekutter

      Adriaan, I’d be interested in knowing what you think is “much better” about the 920 than the 935. I’ve had several friends that won’t switch because of the round screen. I too thought that would be a problem years ago when I got the 620 for running because of the light weight. I quickly grew to love the round face over the rectangular one. Partly because you could put longer fields on the top/bottom for things like time and distance. HR, Cad, Speed fit perfectly side by side in the middle. Add in totally customizable CIQ fields and its even better. And now with the 935/F5 actually having a larger total area than the 920 with a very crisp screen, I can’t imagine going back. And for tri’s, the quick release kit for the 935 is definitely superior, IMO.

  3. Robert

    TomTom could have had it all, the watch had Bluetooth, why not throw in support for a footpod? But the deal breaker for me was it’s restricted intervals. I had the original runner and offloaded it a week later. Had it worked with footpods and had pace targets i wouldn’t own the 3 Polar watches I do now

    • Mr T

      Agree but my issue was the inability to change the screen metrics. It was limited.

      Garmin is pricing itself out of the casual market.

  4. simon

    fenix 3 beta firmware update ! – gasp, wasn’t expecting that. Seems like they broke something on this so they’re promising another one in a week or so

  5. Ryan M.


    Have you gotten to try out the new Beta for Garmin Connect on iOS that has a new My Day view? A huge improvement from the prior layout in my opinion. Have been a fitbit user for my day-to-day tracking as I like to wear a normal watch, and wasn’t a fan of Garmin’s UI, but the new layout could be enough to get me to switch.

  6. Steve Aitken

    Awesome video of the tracking planes from the tour. Another insight into just one of the behind the scenes aspects that we pretty much take for granted. I reckon that the pilots may have grown up as track riders. Fairly hand at turning left…

  7. ZeSweets

    Hero5 Session is actually 20% off ($239.20) on Amazon!

    link to amazon.com

  8. Tim Lambie

    Awesome depth, inspiring, personable and entertaining ecosystem. All the best. Tim

  9. MTB

    New Wahoo Element Mini was released today. Anyone else intrigued?