The 2018 Sports Tech Year In Review: 12 Months in 12 Minutes

This past year has been a pretty substantial one for new sports tech products. Across nearly all categories we either saw piles of new devices to choose from, or saw a few really good new devices stand out from the rest in their respective markets.  Be it wearables or bike computers, action cameras or drones, and trainers or power meters. Virtually every category I cover saw some really good innovation this year.

Which doesn’t mean there weren’t failures. No, we lost a few companies along the way, and certainly there were a few stinker products as well.  And another pile that just didn’t live up to their hype (or multi-year expectations).  But on the whole – the tech industry delivered.  Of course, this post (rather, video), isn’t about chiding the industry for all their wrongs (and rights). Nope, I did that back in October as part of this keynote here.

Instead, I decided to go back and look at almost all the product announcements made in 2018. Month by month. When I started this project earlier this morning I didn’t anticipate exactly how many products there were.  Sure, you remember the big ones – but not all the smaller accessories and such. They pile up!

In fact, in 2018 I published 232 posts here, and 116 videos on YouTube (not including this post or video). I expect another one or two more posts before the end of the year to round things out. That’s a lot of (mostly) sports tech goodness!

So without further adieu (it’s late Friday night and finding all the photos/video clips for this video took many more hours than I expected), here’s the entirety of sports technology in 2018, as seen in 12 minutes:

Oh, and yes, I had planned to put together a corresponding detailed post with this…but..those plans dissolved about 6 hours deep into this video….and that was about 8 hours ago. On the bright side, at least my photo storage server is slightly more organized now.

Thanks for watching and reading over the course of the year, and have a great weekend ahead!

P.S. – Don’t forget that the DCR ‘Didn’t get what you wanted for’ Giveaway ends tonight! Get your entry in over on that post!

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15 Comments

  1. Mr. Cod

    love the map posters!

    • Mark J.

      Ditto. Love me some maps. Very cool set there.

    • Thanks! I bought them back in November from Mapiful. They had a bunch of Black Friday sales, but actually their almost constant sales/coupons are just as good a deal.

      Also, as a pro tip, once you buy three maps, you basically get the fourth for free (depending on the coupon).

      We just use generic pant hangers to hold them. Though, getting them absolutely perfectly level on such hangers can be a bit tricky as they move ever so slightly. Lama and I took a shot at it, and then a few days later we realized we were drunk apparently. So then The Girl and I took another shot. It took a few more shots till we got it spot-on.

  2. Vojko

    Hi Ray,

    nice post…as always…but after realizing that your opinion is sometimes misleading … as in the case of Garmin watches (Fenix 5x+….for which you claim to be the best in class, despite all the issues that it has…?? )…the whole view of your work changes…but not to better…::)).
    I really hope this is an isolated case, because otherwise all your work is in vain…we all go to your side when we are about to buy some new tech device…and if it turns out that your opinion is misleading…well you know where this will leads..

    Wish you and your family happy new year 2019!

    • Not sure I follow. I actually don’t prefer the Fenix 5X+…and this post doesn’t even mention the F5X+ at all.

      That said, which watch is better than it? And why?

    • Vojko

      I was a Suunto guy for many years, and I did change to Garmin mostly because of your recomendation…and now I have Fenix 5x+ and all of it`s problems (unusable wrist HR, realy bad GPS accuracy, power meter spikes… and so on)…I didn`t have so much problems with Suunto in all years than with Garmin in just 5 last months…and there are new issues with every new update…??
      I`m not saying that you are guilty for this issues, or my decission, it just looks like you prefer Garmin over Suunto…..maybe too much….

      But I love your work…just keep going….realy…it is so useful…but Garmin…:(..please talk to them…make them work harder…If you can….::))

      with nice wishes for the New Year!
      Vojko

    • The challenge with choosing a 5X variant (or a Suunto 9), will always be the weight. Which in turn impacts optical HR. Especially if you have skinner wrists.

      I don’t really hear of many people complaining about really bad 5X GPS issues. And it’s certainly no worse than the Suunto Spartan or 9.

      As for your power meter spikes I did link to a beta firmware update last week that apparently fixes that newly introduced issue.

      I pressure Garmin all the time. Just like I do Suunto and everyone else. In fact, likely far more than I do everyone else. Cheers!

    • Vojko

      maybe my expectations in case of Garmin Fenix series was just to high…for beeing the watch for app 800,00€….versus Suunto spartan series, whose price moves around 420,00€,
      or even series 9 for app 600,00€.
      Not to compare to my previous Ambit 3, which GPS reception was better then Garmin`s without any Galileo or Glonas “magic”….::))

    • Sure. But generally speaking when there’s only a handful of posts per month to a thread (and most of them come from one person), that’s hardly an epidemic. Not to mention in a place that the entire purpose is troubleshooting issues.

      I don’t doubt you’re getting bad GPS tracks, but it’s not impacting every watch out there. I wish I had something else for you, but that’s sorta all there is aside from contacting support.

      If I went to the Apple Forums, I’d simply assume all iPhone’s were unusable.

    • vojko

      thanks anyway…HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

  3. fisao

    Thank you Ray for all your work, et bonnes fêtes !

  4. Jimbo

    Minor typo, it’s adieu, not ado.
    Happy Holidays