In a move that will turn heads within the indoor training industry, Zwift has acquired Milestone and their famed inexpensive ($25) running footpods. This isn’t the first time Zwift has dabbled in hardware, but it is definitely the first time they’ve overtly made a hardware play that will ultimately end in them having a Zwift-branded (and owned end to end) device. And of all things? The unassuming running footpod.
The Milestone Pod:
Now for those wondering why on earth Zwift would buy a running footpod company, the answer is simple: It’s their gateway to indoor running success. Zwift needed/needs some method for runners on treadmills to transmit pace to their apps, allowing those athletes to utilize Zwift for running. Sure, there were previously a number of options in the market, but those options fell into two very distinct camps: Crappy or Expensive.
Crappy Options: These would be all of the existing ANT+ footpods that cost $50-$80 but were ANT+ only, not Bluetooth Smart. Additionally, there were the couple of Bluetooth Smart footpods that were either discontinued (Adidas) or the size of a Twinkie (Polar’s option). Seriously, there was nothing on the market reasonable except Milestone.
Expensive Options: Then you had the other end of the spectrum. Very good devices, but all expensive. This past winter we saw Zwift partner with Stryd to produce a Zwift-colored variant, called Stryd Live. That footpod was ostensibly all about Zwift, and in fact was launched at a Zwift event in NYC. Accurate it is, but at $100, it’s not viable for most. Never mind higher end $200+ options like the full Stryd or RunScribe pods. Or even higher end options like TechnoGym’s treadmill that integrates with Zwift.
Again, those expensive options certainly existed in the market, but for ‘world domination’, they didn’t fit the bill.
And then there was Milestone. Floating for the past year or two at $15-$30 for their Bluetooth Smart only footpod, it was the perfect option for Zwift (and many other people). It lacked ANT+ though, which was their biggest mistake as a company. See, without that it wasn’t appealing to Garmin runners with older devices that only supported ANT+ footpods. Given Garmin at the time dominates the running market, it significantly hurt their revenue potential (since Garmin’s footpods were 2-3x the cost).
About 18 months ago (January 2017), Milestone added standard Bluetooth Smart footpod support. This sent them on a very different course then they originally intended when they had their own app that was the only platform that worked with the footpod.
You see, Milestone’s initial business plan had them sharing your running footpod data with retailers (from your local running shop to big box companies). They’d send everything from shoe preferences to exactly how many miles you ran each month, to the retailer. The retailer could then customize marketing messages like “Looks like it’s time for new shoes”, based on shoe mileage. The reason the cost for the device was so low was that your data was subsidizing the other half of things. Milestone would charge the retailers for access to your data, and thus cover their hardware costs.
Except for one problem. Actually, two problems: Retailers balked in a big way.
First problem was they balked because the per-user pricing Milestone wanted to charge them for this constant update data was insane. Second, Milestone’s privacy policies at the time didn’t cover any of this. According to their initial privacy policies (since updated), they explicitly stated they weren’t sharing any data. And while technically true (because they didn’t have any retail partners), it still caused concern among a few retailers I talked to.
As a result Milestone found themselves in a pickle: Their product simply wasn’t expensive enough to make any appreciable amount of money. By the time you added in manufacturing and distribution costs, it was likely Milestone was making almost nothing on their product (especially when on sale at $15-$20). And unlike a high volume product such as a Scrub Daddy, there isn’t really a ton of footpod demand globally.
So here you had a company with a very solid product that most users liked, but that not enough people would buy to make it a meaningfully profitable company (Side note: I’ve had really good luck with it, though some say it’s not quite as stable pace-wise in certain scenarios as Stryd is for them, for me it worked fine).
And thus Milestone was a target ripe for acquisition. And acquired they’ve now been.
As part of the deal Zwift has officially “acquired the commercial rights to manufacture and distribute footpods previously manufactured under the
Milestone Sports brand”, and additionally, they’ve acquired the core talent behind it: Milestone CEO (Jason Kaplan), Chief Technical Officer (Meir Machlin) and (VP of Business Development Tzach Goren).
According to Zwift’s press release, they’ve got near-term plans for the pods (Milestone’s pods have largely been unavailable on Amazon since late 2017, which the company says was due to manufacturing delays). Zwift says that Milestone pods are now back in production and shipping to distribution partners. According to the Amazon listing it’s not yet back in stock. Hopefully that changes shortly.
But that’s not all. In addition, the company said:
“Zwift now aims to produce a new footpod model, which will be more “Zwift-centric,” focused on improving the indoor running experience. The new Zwift footpod will be a refined version of the legacy MilestonePod, with enhanced technology and a more responsive feel for both indoor and outdoor experience.”
They also noted in the press release when discussing Milestone’s footpods:
“Not only do they provide connectivity to Zwift on any treadmill, but they also provide the outdoor runner with important
metrics such foot strike and rate of impact along with run distance and duration. These are not only great tools that help to refine running technique, but also help provide runners with important information that can improve performance, reduce injury risk, and make sure they are in the proper shoe.”
Marketing fluff sure, but for a group well seasoned in writing press releases, there’s so much you can read into this. The fact that they acknowledge these metrics in a press release about the acquisition is a sure sign for things to come in Zwift.
So who’s the biggest loser in this deal (it’s definitely not consumers)? Stryd. Without question…Stryd.
As I cautioned in my Stryd Live post back in February, I noted the $100 price point was dangerous for them, and needed to be about half that. They had a limited time period to sell as many footpods as possible and gain not just market share, but market PR in their product. But at $100 for a footpod, it was hard to do that in the scale that Zwift wants running to be part of their platform at (hundreds of thousands of people).
Zwift’s CEO Eric Min does state that they’ll continue to work with existing treadmill and footpod makers though:
“We are determined, as much as ever before, to continue work with existing footpod and treadmill manufacturers to help us achieve this goal by providing customers the best possible experiences to suit their individual training needs.”
And undoubtedly that sentiment is true. But there’s a simple reality that when a consumer can buy a footpod at $20-$30 (or heck, probably eventually even free and bundled into an annual membership), they aren’t going to buy a $100 one. And if Zwift improves the footpod as they say they’re going to do, it’s likely they can solve any of the nuances of the existing Milestone pod.
Zwift’s Future Hardware plans:
As I alluded to at the beginning of the post though, this is hardly Zwift’s first foray into hardware. Last year they courted a number of trainer companies to try and get exclusive deals on trainers that could be bundled with Zwift. Most of the industry said ‘No thanks’, but there was one taker: CycleOps.
They did a deal with Zwift that went part of the way towards what Zwift ultimately wants. CycleOps handles the entire order/fulfillment/distribution process for the trainer piece, though to the end user you think you’re on Zwift’s platform. That results in a consumer getting a deal on a bundled Zwift/CycleOps trainer package for the Magnus and Hammer trainers, a custom virtual kit, along with an ANT+ stick and USB extension cable (and a year’s membership of Zwift). You can even get 0% financing on the package too.
But as anyone in the industry will tell you – that’s all merely a first step. After all, Zwift has stated numerous times their admiration for Peloton, the enormously successful indoor cycling platform (which also announced their running plans earlier this year). And Peloton is a 100% hardware inclusive platform. Which isn’t to say that would work as well for Zwift, but Zwift has also stated they want the consumer experience to be easier. Not in terms of software, but the entire hardware experience.
They want you to ultimately get a box from the FedEx man that says “Zwift” on the outside, and inside you’ll find the trainer, trainer mat, stand for your iPad, any sensors you need, and even potentially bundles with TV’s or displays built-in. In other words, just like Peloton. And make no mistake, they’ll get there. It’s just a matter of time and enough deal-making before they find the right solutions.
And that’s where things will undoubtedly get interesting. Hopefully Zwift will continue their support of third-party devices as they’ve done to date. It’d be ‘easy’ for them to eventually acquire a trainer company and build their own trainer. Even doing so at a loss to ultimately get subscription revenue – a core reason why so many trainer companies are hesitant to get too close to Zwift. While Zwift is the biggest trainer platform, TrainerRoad isn’t all that far behind. It’s just that you don’t see the numbers visually every time you log in as to how many other people are riding concurrently.
Whatever Zwift’s future hardware plans are, in terms of what’s good for consumers, today’s MilestonePod is actually a good thing for consumers (assuming it continues to work with non-Zwift devices/applications – a question I’ve sent them to noodle on). Zwift gives Milestone plenty of capital to get production back on track, and soon gets cheap $25 footpods back in people’s hands. All of which is good.
With that – thanks for reading!
Ray, On the expensive way to transmit treadmill data to Zwift seems like I remember a device that you would place under the treadmill and it had a wheel that would measure the speed of the treadmill and transmit that via bluetooth.
It’s still going … RunSocial
TreadTracker by RunSocial – Zwift’s only real competitor for virtual running. Shane Miller did a video on it recently. I got mine for about £70 so not sure I would call that “expensive” ?
This is the video I mentioned link to youtube.com
That product looks pretty cool. And it seems to work via bt without having to have a cell phone with companion app involved.
Interesting, since the last few days I have been playing with zwift run trying to get it to work with a milestonepod I just purchased. But for the life of me, I have yet to get the darn pod to get seen reliably by Zwift. I have a support ticket in, but so far, the obvious stuff I have tried. And I have to admit, I had not idea for windows I would not be able to do a direct connect to the computers Bluetooth. Having to use my cell phone as a bridge is a pain. But, so far the graphics look pretty cool for running, so hoping I can get to work. Now, if I could just get my velotrons to work with zwift road, I would pay the 15 bucks a months to play some. 🙁
Yeah you would have to use the Zwift Companion App to act as a bridge. Does that still not work? Try taking the battery out of the MilestonePod and back in again.
Yep, am using the companion app on my note 8. I have tried all the inputs from taking battery out, etc. I have gotten it to connect 3 times now. But each time, I then up pair and try to re pair, and nothing. So I have no idea why it has worked a few times. I have tried on 3 different computers.
That’s just going to be a faulty foot pod, isn’t it? My impression of Milestone is that you got what you paid for: a cheap pod that often didn’t work properly. You can’t really compare it to a Stryd.
I own a Garmin footpod, and since I couldn’t get it to work in Zwift (using a CABLE device), I got a great deal on a Milestonepod, and it works Flawlessly. It’s much much more precise, and the app is cool!
It’s interesting to realize that a $25-30 pod works way better than a $60-70 one…
I bought a Milestone Pod specifically for running with Zwift. I tried to run with Zwift on the treadmill exactly twice before I gave up due to connection flakiness. And I was trying to connect the pod directly to my phone, which I was running the Zwift app on. The pod connects fine to Milestone’s own app; it’s only Zwift that it won’t connect to reliably.
Hopefully this acquisition will fix that.
Sounds like either:
A) You didn’t have the right firmware on the pod
B) The main Milestone app was open in the background and taking control of it (normal BLE behaviour).
…or you paired the pod to your phone as a Bluetooth device which is not necessary.
You are not giving enough info. What sw pieces are you using. I went through this for the last 2 months. With apple stuff, everything is rock solid. With ZCA, could never get to work. With android beta, it works fine with speed. Zwift does not work with android and cadence yet.
Its interesting to see where this goes. My sense with zwift is that there is a bigger pull to cyclists then runners. If I look at runners I think the camp splits into casual exercisers, who run because its accessible, and serious runners, who train in a structured way. Neither of those camps feel like as natural a fit to Zwift as cyclists who tend to have lots of gear and a greater propensity to acquire more. Probably I’m wrong but my feeling is that running isn’t going to have the rapid take-up that cycling did.
I think Zwift is awesome for the structured way. For doing intervals on a gym treadmill, having that integrated in Zwift and it being right in your face on your ipad in front instead of on a watch is a far bigger reason to use Zwift running for me than a guy running around a fake road on the ipad.
Agree with both of you. Last year, I was primarily cycling and the group rides and group training (not the ERG-based group rides that zwift does now) were incredibly motivational. Or hill repeats, or even just jumping on, riding, and trying to catch or drop guys. Great fun. And this sort of training I think is much better suited to cycling than running.
This year, I’m running almost exclusively. I’d call myself a fairly serious runner in that I have specific workouts I’m trying to complete. I have done a lot of speed/interval work on the treadmill and Zwift is awesome for that because I get a heads-up display of pace and distance that is actually accurate (using Stryd distance instead of my treadmill’s terribly inaccurate distance). Zwift was simply the mechanism that I’d use to track my workout splits.
However, I’d likely never log on simply to do a group run on zwift. Pace is too specific for running for that, I think.
So it will be interesting to see where this goes.
If zwift eventually produces a treadmill that quickly respond’s the the game’s changing grades… well that might be something I’d buy.
I organise many of the “structured” group runs on Zwift. Before it got warmer we had four pace groups and up to 5 time slots to suit different time zones. Fair point that it can be hard to find exactly the right pace but one of the ones I organise is essentially a steady pace run and the other a workout. In real life, unless you train on your own, there is always a bit of compromise when a club say does a group run so it is kind of similar here. Group workouts for runners have just come out in Beta. On Wednesday we are going to have the first public try out of it.
Even when you’re doing a structured plan there are many miles of easy and recovery runs to be done. Sometimes the weather sucks and you’re forced onto the ‘mill and having Zwift as an option to keep your interest isn’t a bad thing.
I’m a runner who likes to do some cycling as cross training and recently got a Kickr Snap and Zwift and like it a lot. Then we had a couple of days where thunderstorms rolled in right when I needed to get my run in. I put a cheap BT Pyle foot pod on, fired up Zwift on my iPad and it was probably the least boring 7 mile easy TM run ever. It’s not as engaging as biking on Zwift but it’s better than the news or something else on TV.
Hmm.. Interesting note on run metrics. Potentially a big impact on runscribe here? I can imagine Runscribe getting a little twitchy about nailing a big firmware release fairly quickly!
Runscribe has definitely been slow to get their act together and this is not good news for them. I bought it back in November and have been a bit disappointed that it is really still in Beta. With good weather, I haven’t been on the treadmill in several months, but last I tried the pace accuracy/consistency made it pretty much unusable with Zwift. I’m still rooting for them but definitely regretting pulling the trigger when I did.
I’m on the beta firmware and it’s pretty accurate for me… Although I haven’t calibrated the gym treadmill so can’t be 100% sure where any inaccuracy comes from.
Whilst I agree RunScribe hasn’t quite hit the jackpot with universally accurate pace/distance for all running types out of the box, but the betas are getting closer; it’s just a matter of time before that Eureka moment comes. All of that said, I haven’t seen a single competitor even come close to the long standing running metrics that RunScibe has long provided (albeit corrected after you enter the right distance for a given run) and particularly specific data for each foot from a sensor on that foot.
Yes, agree 100%. Latest beta loaded and ready to go…. Hopefully getting there.
I am an admin on the Zwift Runners Facebook group. Can’t recall hearing much, if any chat, about RunScribe as a speed source. Interesting though that it might be OK now?
Tim, the ant+ footpod profile is only enabled in the beta firmware. I don’t know how many people are using this, but it’s fair to assume not that many. It shouldn’t be long until a main firmware release to push this out to ‘the masses’.
I have issues getting the pod to work via android. And it was way off on my run using it today on my treadmill. Guess I will join the FB runners group and see what others are doing. Meir has been great trying to help me. But since he does not have an android phone, impossible for him to see what I am seeing. Maybe this thing is more stable on the apple platform than android?
I have Milestone Pods on two pairs of road shoes and a pair of waterproof trail shoes I use in the winter. I will be interesting to see how this changes the Milestone experience. The team was very responsive to the small number issues I had, including emails from Meir to help with troubleshootingwhen something looked wonky with the calibration. Hopefully the great customer service doesn’t suffer now that Zwift has acquired them.
are you using with zwift? what is your setup? i can not get to work
I’m using it for running with a Polar M430 watch and Polar Flow. I haven’t tried Zwift.
I was a very early adopter of Milestone (in fact , I got it free as part of my shoe test for a major shoe company) It worked well for about a year.
Since then it’s been spotty. It worked with Zwift for a while then I had trouble connecting.
I mainly used it as a backup to check my watch runs or in case my watch batter was low. it was good for that.
I wonder if they will increase the price.
Agree on Stryd. I would have bought the footpod unit (I think their power meter is suspect) if it was $50 or $60, but at $100 it was too much.
I think I’ll just wait on a new milestone pod or Zwiftpod or whatever they call it. Any idea if it will stil have the same functionality and what becomes of the milestone App?
If they had Ant+ on the new footpod, it will be great. I have a Garmin Forefunner 920xt and my computer doesn’t have bluetooth. And I won’t change any of them to get a footpod from Zwift. I’ll just find one that works with Ant+ even if it is a little more expensive.
I’ve got two milestonepods (got the second one during a Valentine’s Day sale for $14) and use them outdoors and on Zwift. They work very well. I think that Zwift will need to capture the fitness club/gym based treadmills. I think that doing that will require the Android-based application to expand the base beyond those with Apple devices…
Any word on how this will impact the milestonepuck and the work with Qualcomm?
i added a bt usb on my computer for 15 buckd
Great post! I loved the extra bits of insight about the various corporate strategies.
Glad to what the pods should be back in stock soon. I had been looking to get one for Zwift but had been unable to find one.
I have a milestone pod on back order the retailer has said they were expecting a delivery around June 26th, I hope this doesn’t effect this or the price.
Interesting…. Had used the milestone pod for over a year or so, and it recently died. I went ahead and purchased the Stryd Live and just started running with it on Zwift. Immediate improvement in 3 areas:
1. MUCH better accuracy at ALL speeds/cadences. This was the huge “elephant in the room” flaw with the milestone pod, in my opinion. It was only semi-accurate at the pace it was calibrated for. Warmups, intervals, cool downs, run a little faster or slower than average – and the accuracy could be off by over 1 mph or more. Stryd, with NO calibration, stayed within .1 or so of my pace all the way from my initial starting pace all the way thru max pace.
2. Combination of Ant+ and Bluetooth allows me to use it on my laptop at home, but still have it work with my ipad when I’m at a gym/traveling.
3. Re-chargeable battery (micro-USB) with an actual low battery indicator that does not require me to sync thru my phone (and even then was never accurate – I routinely had batteries die mid run).
If Zwift/milestone can address number 1 and come in at half the price; it will be a win; although Stryd could just lower their price point if/when that happens. I think they also need to address item 2, and do something about item 3 – in order to be competitive in the long run.
Yeah agreed. Hopefully a gen 2 version will address the points you make. If it does and it still comes in “cheap” then will be great.
What does this mean for existing milestonepod users? I’m not interested in Zwift, but I am in the longer term future of the hardware I’ve got in terms of syncing with the MP servers and firmware updates etc and using with my Fenix5.
Remains to be seen for sure but, as Ray mentioned, must be good for customers I would have thought. A foot pod will always need to “work” outdoors as well as indoors if you value what it provides over GPS. As such your pod now seemingly has a longer term support pathway.
Ray – wrong link for Shane’s MYRUN video. Should be link to youtube.com
“And Peloton is a 100% hardware inclusive platform.”
Is that actually true? I thought you could do some Peleton stuff without needing to buy their bike? I also noted that their new “Tread” treadmill has ANT+ and BT connectivity. Other than a HR strap wonder what else you could/would want to connect to it.
and you can do some Peleton stuff outdoors – link to onepeloton.com …
I looked at that page and one thing rather struck me: all the models in all the (very big) images are female. Very odd.
That is true, you can technically use just the iPad app, though I’m unclear on what level of integration there is with sensors. Been on my to-do/check-out list for a while.
I bought a Milestone explicitly for use with Zwift once the beta software was released. Once everything was set up, it was the easiest and most convenient system when paired with an iOS device. Toward the end of last winter I saw significantly more runners in Zwift, and I believe that the Milestone was the best point of entry for users as the iOS application matured.
I think Zwift’s largest obstacle outside of interfacing runners to the virtual world will be dealing with the seasonal shifts. There’s always a few people that lock in to TM’s, but the majority of the runners I encounter are primarily outside with the exception of inclement or undesirable weather/temperatures.
If the updated pod includes ANT+ support it’s an immediate purchase for me. The additional metrics would be nice for my aging but still very relevant 910xt.
Is it possible to ‘run’ track intervals using zwift? Any sign of an android app?
They have some run workouts but it’s still on the same roads as all of the other runners and cyclists. I haven’t tried any of them yet but I don’t see how it would be much different than just using a workout from your watch while on the TM. You still have to make all of your own speed and incline changes either way. Maybe having the data on an iPad/iPhone/TV/computer right in front of your face instead of having to check your watch is a perceived benefit though.
Hopefully this will provide a bid of impetus for them to get bluetooth working natively on Windows.
I’m guessing their commercial strategi went completely down the drain, when GDPR came into effect here in Europe. Without telling people their data were being sold of (and i’m pretty sure there would be some “personal” data within that dataset) could potentially shut the company down due to the fine and public roasting that would follow. – But i do like that it is sold to zwift, and agree with some of the other comments about needing to get into the treadmill/gym market.
Of course, had consumers ever been impacted (and I have no evidence they were), obviously, people would have crapped when it came to GDPR.
I‘ve been using Stryd since march. While power is of course a shady thing, since there is no easy way to compare it to an absolute standart, what Stryd does nail is the incredible accuracy (even out of the box, whitout calibration). No footpod I‘ve ever used was that accurate through differet paces. It doesn‘t even make a difference if on a treadmill or outside. I never had to calibrate it and it always gives me accurate figures (pace/distance). So, for me, this DOES justifiy the higher price (they also have an incredibly great support team, btw).
I‘m not with Stryd and I‘m not trying to promote them, I‘m just trying to explain why (in my eyes) the higher price is justified, compared to ANY other Footpod out there.
So my question? How do you measure the accuracy. Do you have a certified course you check it out on? Do you go down the local track? Do you run mile markers on a local highway?
I’ve heard a lot about Stryd’s accuracy, but I really wonder how people are measuring it.
Because anything else is just a guess.
Well, in my case I got a 400 m Track just next Town. You need one anyway for the 3/6 CP Test for Stryd. Great way to test the accuracy. Also, you can read a lot of reports on their forums.
And no, running on the Highway is not allowed here 😉
Regarding Peloton’s new Digital App. At this time you can connect a BT Heart Rate Monitor. link to support.onepeloton.com
The app does not support the same experience as the forthcoming Tread will do.
Zwfit should pair up with one of the leading treadmill companies (ICON Fitness brands) and integrate an Android giving users a different option than iFIT.
It will be interesting to see if the original Milestone Pod remains on the market with its zero-profit price. When Zwift’s new Zwift-centric foot pod comes out, it will have to compete directly with the Milestone Pod, which will likely be less expensive.
As far as Stryd is concerned, for me the real value of their device is the running power metric. It’s extreme accuracy is just a bonus. I agree that it’s not ideal, and it would be far better if running power was a standard that you could compare directly with other manufacturers, as it is in cycling. But for me, Stryd’s running power is more than a “shady thing.” Running power is an amazing way to measure your effort during a run, and to me it’s the main draw of their entire platform. I understand and respect Ray’s viewpoint on this subject, but I think it’s a mistake to ignore running power completely because if this.
Selling the Stryd Live at half its price seems like it would undervalue its industry-leading precision, even though it lacks power. If you bought a Stryd Live at $50 and then decided to upgrade it to use power, the $150 upgrade cost seems too prohibitively expensive. Who knows, maybe selling the Stryd Live at $50 would have been a deal breaker for Zwift for this integration to happen.
I guess I don’t see Stryd as the loser here. They have a premium product that excels indoors and out. Their main draw is a new metric that many runners are finding to be effective. Selling their hardware at a loss just to gain users that are essentially a fringe group (the number of people who would bother to sync food pods, computers, and treadmills are likely a small-ish niche)… it just doesn’t add up for me.
Anyhow… Great article, as usual!
I did not mean that Stryde’s power meter is a shady thing, but power meter for running in general. I concur that Stryde’s power meter is a very useful thing for training, but there still is nothing to validate running power with.
Still, the argument was comparing a footpod with another, not a footpod with a powermeter. So, Stryde Live is more just to compare with Milestone and it’s there that I argue Stryde’s incredible accuracy is worth the price. For me at least, the main reason to get a footpod was to get accurate real-time pace and distance. None but the Stryde was accurate enough, so I don’t regret paying more for it.
If the new Milestone/Zwift footpod won’t have a comparable accuracy, then I personally don’t think Stryde will be a big looser here.
I’m guessing you have more disposable income than most. I can’t justify the higher price for stryd. First, I’ve heard reports of their accuracy and I as I noted about I’m not sure how people are making that claim.
I’m not of fan of Stryd because of issues with their kickstarter campaign. Their move to a chest strap instead of pod caught me by surprise, but the unit just never worked for me.
I think they are a niche of a niche. That’s not a recipe for success. I do a lot of racing and I have never seen another Stryd user in person .
In spite of that experience, I would be more than willing to pay $50 or $60 for their footpad, but that’s it. I think $100 is a bit much for most runners.
I do think the power thing is shady and not terrible useful. I have yet to see one olympic caliber runner use their product to great effect. I see a lot of paid endorsers.
I cannot say anything about the Kickstarter campaign or the chest strap (missed those completely and have no Information abouth those), but the footpod and their support is great.
I don’t have a lot of income (I got my fenix 3 hr very cheap from a friend, because I coulnd’t afford such a high-end device), but because of several health conditions, I neeed to keep a close eye on my training, especially my pace. So footpod it was. Unfortunately, none of the sub-100$ footpods was good enough (Garmin’s for example, was terrible on a treadmill).
Yes, Stryde is expensive (In my country almost 250$ and Stryde Live wasn’t available) and I had to save money for it. But it really helped me a lot in my Training.
Sure, I might be an exception, but for me it was worth. And I know a lot of runners who value accurate pace/distance enough, to go for the Stryde.
On the question of the utility of power data for running, I think it’s pretty well established in the biking community now that power is a critical metric for all kinds of training. I find it hard to believe that it wouldn’t be just as useful for running. Why wouldn’t it?
It would, of course. As soon as someone finally comes up with measuring power on a human body while running outside and whitout a crapton of sensors on the body and along the way.. Everything else is just a guestimate (just like Vo2max-Values on a sportwatch).
The thing with cycling power is, that it’s fairly easy to measure power on moving parts of mechanical devices, whereas the human Body definately is not a mechanical device. Ray once explained it a bit in a post, if I remember properly.
IMO, this power stuff on the bike for most is just of no value. Most just do not spend enough time training on the bike first. As for power on the run, even more of a dont care since most folks just do not even come close to enough run training, which most should be done at a LSD pace anyways.
You’re probably right for many people, but I guess power is actually meant for more serious athletes anyway. I’m not that serious an athlete, but I find power to be incredibly useful as a motivational tool and as a way to gauge how fast I can go on long rides without bonking. It’s also very useful for my daughter’s cross country training and helps measure progress where before we were just going on times which don’t account for course variations. I’m a very satisfied user of power measures at this point.
The key point, motivational tool! what ever gets one out to train, and race, is great!! But so many try to say these toys provide overall faster times. Well, if that were true, they should all be winning their races, and I should be dead last in all of mine. 🙂
The only progress I have found worth tracking, is health, which is 100% free. If one cannot stay healthy ALL THE TIME, well, training times, power numbers, etc., do not mean much.
Now, I do enjoy toys. 🙂 Just ran on my new treadmill with zwift run on my front projection TV. Do I need it? Nope. But fun to change stuff once in a while.
Good luck to your daughters racing.
i have paired the milestone with my suunto ambit 3 but it doesnt show up when i try to start a run the pod is working as it syncs with the phone app
If I buy this Milestone now Zwift Foot Pod, do I have to have Zwift subscription to use it? I really can’t seem to find a clear answer.
Nope, zwift RUN is still free for now. Come join us
.. and the pod should always work with other platforms without paying zwift any more (ie as a footpod with garmin)
It now works with the Milestone app to give you run metrics after any run, treadmill or outside…but after the run – not real time. It’s bluetooth only so its real-time function won’t work with a device that requires ant+ (like my FR235)
Ok, good tip. I can stand using the app, but am hoping it’ll either with with my Vivoactive 2 or Suunto Ambit3. I believe both have Bluetooth. I already ordered and I guess I’ll find out.
very battery hungry after 3 runs battery at warning “red”.so much for 2-3 months battery life expectancy.
notified milestone(super customer service!)
,they are sending a replacement.
time will tell!
Unless they’ve changed it from the MilestonePod, the red LED indicates shoe life not battery life. You get a battery reading when you link up with the Milestone app.
The LED on the Pod references shoe life, not battery life. So a red LED means your shoes are about ready (or past ready!) to be replaced. To see your current shoe distance, check the Dashboard of your App. To see recommended shoe life for your shoe, tap on the shoe icon from your Dashboard.
Here are the shoe life parameters, reflected in the LED color:
Green LED: New – 80% of shoe life
Orange LED: 81% – 95% shoe life
Red LED: 96% (or higher) shoe life
So we’ve had nothing but problems with our foot pod. Bluetooth seems hugely unreliable and constantly drops out mid run and fails during calibration which is incredibly frustrating, Is the garmin foot pod such a bad alternative? I cannot see anything worth getting bt we really want to make this work.
What are you connecting it to?
Thanks for the reply. We have a laptop running ios, we’ve tried the beta bluetooth connection and the app bridge on our zwift/milestone pod with no joy
I’ve been running with the latest pod for a month or so now, and I’m satisfied with what it’s giving me, considering the price. Expectations are lowered by that, so it’s all in proportion.
However, with Zwift buying/investing in it, why have they not addressed the app. It is—in a word—horrible. Design is terrible (amateur, even), and they could still present the limited metrics in a nicer way. Haven’t they seen Strava?!
Also, there the obvious point; it’s a Zwift product (and branded/packaged as such), so why isn’t the Milestone pod app branded as Zwift? Do you know if Zwift will be redesigning it?
A year later, the loser turned out to be the consumer, not Stryd. The useful Milestone app was pulled from the various app stores and none of its features were added to the Zwift or Companion apps. Users now have no simple view for advanced running diagnostics or even pod battery life indication. Stryd remains the iPhone to Zwifts… I don’t know, Blackberry? Thanks to Milestone’s bad business plan and Zwift’s apparent greed, a single integrated solution to encourage healthy runners was bricked and turned into a pedometer for a video game. I’m returning mine.
On the bright side, Milestone isn’t trying to sell your personal data anymore in exchange for you getting targeted e-mails from your local running stores every time your shoes get close to expiring mileage-wise.
I think we’ll eventually see aspects of the Milestone pod platform make it into Zwift. I also think 95% of running efficiency type metric products/companies aren’t sustainable from a business standpoint, and the remaining aren’t actually useful, or science-backed.
Thanks for the unexpected reply on an old thread!
Two questions, if you or interested readers have advice:
1. Any useful software to visualize running form, to replace the Milestone app?
2. Any sensor that can work for both running and biking/elliptical cadence?
It seems that the Milestone servers are not accesible anymore. This means that it can only be used with Zwift app. For many people thia means it is fully useless.
I suppose I am one of the many milestone/zwift pod users disappointed by Zwift’s lack of support for non-treadmill running.
I used to pair the pod with my Polar M430 to get acceptable instant pace, I wouldn’t care much about the extra metrics.
I always calibrated my zwift pod through the old milestone app (when it was still working), of course now that’s not possible anymore.
I see that Polar watches (including my M430) have a stride sensor calibration function, which can be set as automatic or manual. From the M430 user manual it appears this calibration only works for the polar strode sensor? Do you know if this also works for the milestone/zwift pod?