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!
Sports Tech Deals of Note:
A new slate of sports tech deals began over the last few days. These are typical deals that Garmin does *every* single year, usually starting about a month out from Father’s Day. Suunto also often jumps in the fray (and others too). Note: All the trainer ones end tomorrow (May 25th).
|Product||Sale Price||Amazon||Other site||Sale Notes|
|Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case - $50 Off!||$149||Amazon||⚡ I use AirPods primarily when I'm travelling just to listen in airports, planes, etc... I don't tend to use these for workouts due to them falling out. Personally, I just use the basic model.|
|Apple Airpods (2nd Gen) - $30 off|
|$119||Amazon||I use AirPods primarily when I'm travelling just to listen in airports, planes, etc... I don't tend to use these for workouts due to them falling out.|
|Apple Airpods Pro - $30 off!|
|Garmin Edge 130 Plus - 25% off!|
|$149||Amazon||REI||This is the first time we've seen the Edge 130 Plus on sale. The 'Plus' variant is notable compared to the regular unit for having ClimbPro on it, plus a handful of other tweaks. $149 is a good deal for it.|
|Garmin Edge 130 Plus Bundle - 20% off!||$199||Amazon||Competitive Cyclist||This is the first time we've seen the Edge 130 Plus on sale. The 'Plus' variant is notable compared to the regular unit for having ClimbPro on it, plus a handful of other tweaks. This bundle includes a heart rate chest strap as well.|
|Garmin Forerunner 45/45S - $40 off|
|$160||Amazon||If you're looking for a runners focused watch, this is a pretty good deal, about 20% off. The FR45 basically packs all the features of the previous generation FR235...just now in the FR45 series.|
|Garmin Forerunner 935|
|$269||Amazon||⚡ Sure, it's not the latest edition, but the FR935 is the staple of many triathletes and runners, and it still an incredibly solid watch. We saw this a bit lower last summer on Amazon Prime Day ($239) - but beyond that, this is pretty darn low. Also, I say $100-$200 off, because the 'base' price fluctuates a bit these days. Sometimes retail is $399 sometimes $499.|
|Garmin Instinct - $100 off|
|$189||Amazon||Sure, the new Solar variants came out last summer with a few new features, but at their core the Instincts are mostly the same. $189 is still a strong price for this watch.|
|Garmin RVR315 Varia Radar - Save 20%||$120||Amazon||Competitive Cyclist||I believe this is the first sale of the Garmin Varia RVR315 cycling radar. This unit doesn't have a taillight, so it's a bit smaller as a result. Same radar tech though, and compatible with Garmin/Stages/Hammerhead/Wahoo bike computers.|
|Garmin Vivoactive 4/4S - $100 off|
|$249||Amazon||This is Garmin's current offering to compete with the Apple Watch series (alongside the Garmin Venu), and this is a good price, though, it does go lower from time to time (not since Black Friday 2020).|
|GoPro Hero 9 Black - $50 off||$399||Amazon||REI||⚡ This is the camera I use for all my daily shooting during sports. Actually, I've bought a few of them. Note that if you're a GoPro Plus Subscriber, then it's a bit cheaper at $349 from GoPro directly, but otherwise, it's $449.|
|GoPro Max - $50 off|
DCRAINMAKER.COM Posts in the Past Week:
Here’s all the goodness that ended up on the main page this past week:
Sunday: Week in Review–May 17th, 2020
Monday: Strava Cuts Off Leaderboard for Free Users, Reduces 3rd Party Apps for All, and More
Wednesday: First Look at COROS’s new Structured Workout & Strength Training Features
Friday: Trying Out Zwift’s New Boost Mode Feature in Beta
YouTube Videos This Past Week:
Here’s what hit the tubes over on the You of Tube, definitely don’t forget to subscribe there to get notified of videos the second they hit!
Stuff 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 (and in this case, some of these are from the past few weeks…as my backlog is a bit longer):
1) Person mods GTA V to work with smart trainer, and pedals around world: That’s super cool! And it will even export a .FIT file out for upload to Strava or others, and it seems to imply it’s doing road-feel too. Now before someone compares to Zwift, as pointed out in the Reddit comments, GTA V had upwards of 1,000 developers working on it (Zwift has 200-300 employees in total) with a budget of $265 million. Yes, Million.
Also, fun industry tidbit here: The person who did this (Nestor Matas) actually did all the original ANT+ FE-C work at Bkool years before anyone else in the industry did so in their trainers, though he now works for Garmin. Back then though, Bkool was the annual on-stage demo company of FE-C at the ANT+ Symposium – and I even got suckered into being the volunteer cyclist on-stage one year to show it off – I think there’s a picture of both of us on stage somewhere. These days of course it’s baseline functionality in every smart trainer, and is how this mod works.
2) Cervelo co-founder Phil White joins 4iiii as Acting President of Company: This is an interesting one. He’s been a board member for a bit already, so this is a transition within the orbit of the company he’s already familiar with, rather than coming entirely out of left field. The company makes good products of course, but it will be interesting to see if he can boost their profile or market penetration.
3) Dirty Kanzelled race routes: If you were looking at riding the Dirty Kanza and now need a substitute route to keep you busy, this site has piles of awesome routes. Bookmarking it for future reference of simply good routes to scope out (mostly using parts of them).
4) SportTracks shows support for Garmin Varia Radar Traffic Data: Sweet! After I wrote about the Varia radar mapping a week or two ago, SportTracks explained how to use their built-in CIQ data support to do all the overlays and data plotting in a super clean format. Ok Strava, you’re next, right?
5) Emergency Autoland puts Garmin on bleeding edge of autonomous flying: This has nothing to do with sports tech, but it’s all about tech and aviation (and you know, I love aviation). Anyway, it’s a super fascinating look at Garmin’s new AutoLand system for emergencies of mostly smaller aircraft (single-pilot focused). Sure, the tech is interesting, but it’s actually more about the certification here. The idea that if you start with the assumption of all lives being lost in an emergency, and work backwards to find a tech solution that could most likely save everyone with low-risk, it’s astounding. This piece is 6 months old, but notable because the system finally received certification this week. Also – it’s relevant here because people might say ‘I’d never trust Garmin software for life-saving functions’. Ignoring the fact that if you’ve flown on an airplane you probably already have; the key difference here is that this system was a *decade* in the making. Your watch? Probably a 6-12 month product cycle. Different markets, different QA thresholds.
6) GoPro announces new Zeus Mini LED Light: It’s cool, but, it’s actually been out for months. The Zeus mini is simply re-packaging of the GoPro Light Mod with the new GoPro Magnetic Swivel Clip. In fact, you can see it used exactly that way in my review of the light mod. That swivel clip is awesome, btw.
7) 15-year old girl pedals 1,200 kilometers carrying dad on her bike: Well then, I guess that Dirty Kanza make-up ride you were planning doesn’t sound so impressive now, does it?
8) RideWithGPS adds Garmin Course AutoSync (API) Support: After Strava and Komoot rolled it out last week, RideWithGPS joins them. As noted, I suspect we’ll see plenty of companies quickly add support for this. It’s a no-brainer.
Sports Tech Device 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 and a few other firmware updates.
Garmin Fenix 5 Series BETA Firmware Update: Bug fixes.
Garmin Instinct BETA Firmware Update: Minor bug fixes.
Garmin Venu Firmware Update: Mostly a collection of random tweaks, but few minor new features like added stress to watch data field.
Hammerhead Karoo Firmware Update: A pile of bug fixes, as well as a handful of new minor features like automatic wheel circumference.
Wahoo ELEMNT/BOLT/ROAM Firmware Update: Appears to be a re-release of the previous firmware update. So likely fixing some underlying bug.
Thanks for reading!