Massive Deals Round-Up! Hit up the link below for all the best sports tech deals. From huge savings on the Garmin Forerunner 945, Fenix series, Venu AMOLED smartwatch – to the latest Apple, DJI, Fitbit, GoPro, Suunto, and Polar deals. Drones to action cams, activity trackers to trainers, watches to cycling GPS units – and plenty more – tracked daily this holiday deals season!
After a number of weeks of Wahoo throwing down (first with better live tracking and then the new ELEMNT MINI), it was Garmin’s turn to up the ante. Or actually, in their case, drop the price. They’ve quietly matched (permanently) the Wahoo BOLT price at $249, whereas the Edge 520 was previously $299. Note again these are permanent changes to what’s called the MAP (Minimum Advertised Price), and are not temporary sales. My understanding is there have also been shifts for the Canadian pricing as well.
This price match is pretty interesting, albeit one that’s actually been in the works for months. First off, I do NOT see this as a sign of any new Garmin Edge 520 successor on the way. Instead, this is likely driven 110% due to the ELEMNT BOLT. After all, the price match to $249 is the same as the BOLT.
In some ways, I actually don’t think this was totally necessary. I suspect (well, know), that the Edge 520 continues to sell just fine. One only need to see GPLama’s Strava stats videos to know they dominate the listings of newer devices.
My bet though is that they’re actually trying to prevent one specific conversation that I’m sure occurs in bike shops:
Bike shop person: So we have basically two options, the Garmin Edge 520 at $299, and the Wahoo BOLT at $249.
Consumer: Which one is better?
Bike shop person: Well, they’re both pretty close. Pros and cons for each. Garmin’s a better known brand, but Wahoo is up and coming and offers some innovating features.
Consumer: Ok, I’d probably have gone for the Garmin if they’re the same price – since I know the brand and my mates have it. But I’ll just save the $50 and grab the Wahoo.
Bike shop person: Perfect, let’s get you checked out.
If they take away the price aspect, it becomes a branding exercise. To people ‘in the know’, there are of course tons of nuances to either brand. Wahoo would be considered more agile, sometimes more customer friendly. Garmin meanwhile would be considered more trusted as a long-term brand, and with more selection in products/accessories. When Garmin removes the price difference, they spin it back to a branding exercise – and for 95% of consumers unknowingly walking into a bike shop, Garmin will likely win that battle (not the least of which is the bike shop considers potential up-sells the bike shop has of Garmin products like sensors or lights).
Oh – and one more thing: This isn’t just about Wahoo.
I suspect the folks at Garmin are looking at the random flotilla of bike GPS startups that have started to tease the market (primarily based on Android phones), and are looking to undercut those. Meaning that, as I alluded to months ago, companies like Karoo need to be in the financial position to drop prices to compete (especially if technologically they were already on the fence).
No matter the intention though – again, all these changes are great for consumers. More competition is great, as it drives the bigger players to innovate faster. And lower prices are great because…well…everyone needs more money to buy more tacos and ice cream….obviously.
With that – thanks for reading!
(As a random side note: The Edge 520 is pretty much the mainstay of my testing fleet, you’ll often see 2-3 of them on my handlebars for collecting data, primarily power meter data. I generally prefer it over the Edge 820, mostly because I can interact with it far quicker without the touch screen.)
You probably stumbled upon here looking for a review of a sports gadget. If you’re trying to decide which unit to buy – check out my in-depth reviews section. Some reviews are over 60 pages long when printed out, with hundreds of photos! I aim to leave no stone unturned.
I travel a fair bit, both for work and for fun. Here’s a bunch of random trip reports and daily trip-logs that I’ve put together and posted. I’ve sorted it all by world geography, in an attempt to make it easy to figure out where I’ve been.
The most common question I receive outside of the “what’s the best GPS watch for me” variant, are photography-esq based. So in efforts to combat the amount of emails I need to sort through on a daily basis, I’ve complied this “My Photography Gear” post for your curious minds! It’s a nice break from the day to day sports-tech talk, and I hope you get something out of it!
Many readers stumble into my website in search of information on the latest and greatest sports tech products. But at the end of the day, you might just be wondering “What does Ray use when not testing new products?”. So here is the most up to date list of products I like and fit the bill for me and my training needs best! DC Rainmaker 2019 swim, bike, run, and general gear list. But wait, are you a female and feel like these things might not apply to you? If that’s the case (but certainly not saying my choices aren’t good for women), and you just want to see a different gear junkies “picks”, check out The Girl’s 2018 Gear Guide too.