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Week in Review: April 5th, 2021

WeekInReview22

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:

There’s a handful of sports tech deals out there right now:

ProductSale PriceAmazonOther siteSale Notes
Garmin Edge 130 Plus - 25% off!
$199
$149The '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 Fenix 6 Series - $100 all models
$599-$1,149
$100 off⚡ This deal is back! I've gotta believe this is semi-targetted at undercutting COROS's latest Veritx 2 even further, but this brings down the base Fenix 6 model to $449, and the Fenix 6 Pro from $549 (including maps/music/wifi). This also includes the newer Fenix 6/6S Solar units from last summer (so basically, all solar variants too)
Garmin Forerunner 45/45S - $50 off
$199
$149If you're looking for a runners focused watch, this is a pretty good deal, about 25% off. The FR45 basically packs all the features of the previous generation FR235...just now in the FR45 series.
Garmin Forerunner 745 - $100 off
$499/499EUR
$399⚡ This is the best deal we've seen to date on this watch, arguably one of my favorite watches (if not my favorite watch).
Garmin Forerunner 935
$499
$269⚡ 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 Solar - $100 off
$399/$449
$299
Garmin Lily Classic - $50 off$199
Garmin Lily Sport - $50 off
$199
$149
Garmin Venu GPS Smartwatch - $50 off
$299
$269Officially they say $80 off, but realistically it's about $50 off, maybe a touch less. Remember the Venu 2 came out this past spring.
Garmin Venu SQ - $50 off
$199/$249 with Music
$149
Garmin Vivoactive 4 - Up to $100 off
$299
$249Not the best price we've seen (that was back in June at $189), but still good.
Garmin Vivoactive 4S - Up to $100 off$249
Garmin Vivofit Jr - $40 off
$79
$29⚡I believe this is the lowest price we've ever seen this for. Either way, $29 is kinda crazy. Both my two older girls wear them, with my oldest always having it on, and the middle child mostly having it on. They both love them.
GoPro Hero 9 Black - $50 off$399This 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.
Tacx NEO 2T Smart Trainer - $100 off! (In Stock)
$1,399
$1,299⚡ Hey, it's on-sale. Which, basically hasn't happened in a long long time. Nor has it been in stock half the time. So getting it both on sale, and in-stock is impressive.

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–March 28th, 2021
Tuesday: Polar Ignite 2 Hands-On: What’s New & Different
Wednesday: Suunto adds Komoot Routes Turn by Turn Integration in Latest Update
Wednesday: Tacx & Garmin Increase Tacx App Integration, Plus Training Status Plans
Wednesday: Peloton’s $120 Credit & 10X Points for Chase Sapphire Cardholders (US only)
Friday: Review: Bike Mount for DJI Drones to use with Active Track

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. Also, there’s a few things this week that were actually from a week or two ago – I’m just catching up on this list:

1) A deeper look at the Wahoo Speedplay Power Pedals (engineering perspective): For those that know Keith, he’s one of the most public power meter developers in the industry, and also behind many sports tech gadgets within the cycling world from a number of companies. Here’s his most recent look at the FCC filings from Wahoo, on their recently announced Wahoo Speedplay power meter:

2) ZwiftHub Closing Down: Congrats to Toby (the person behind it) on his new job at Wahoo. Unfortunately, it means at the end of the month, ZwiftHub is no more. Perhaps Zwift will consider acquiring it for a fair rate.

image

I do think this once again though shows how big a boon it would be for Zwift to actually have a proper/supported API, akin to what Strava has, for people to Create Cool Shit. It’s these sorts of projects that should eventually be built into Zwift (or acquired). But as Strava and their 20,000+ apps shows, there’s an incredible potential for 3rd party apps to fill in the gaps and increase the community around Zwift.

3) Peloton closes Precor acquisition – shifts focus to Commercial usage: In the grand scheme of sports tech deals, this is one of the bigger ones in recent years, as it will dramatically increase production capability for Peloton. However, when it was announced last December, it didn’t mention increasing focus on the commercial side of Peloton – it just mentioned getting gear to ‘members sooner. However, the new announcement specifically calls out using Precor to focus on the commercial aspect of Peloton (e.g. hotels/apartments/etc…), which by and large Peloton has treated as the red-headed stepchild over the years. Yet, it’s also a great place to introduce people to the Peloton brand with zero marketing cost.

4) A look at the 2021 Chip Shortage: This is a good dive into the semiconductor chip shortage and how it’s impacting the industry (including sports tech). While sometimes this will be obvious to you as a consumer, most times it won’t be: It’ll just mean delayed product launches behind the scenes, or perhaps limited availability without a reason. This is mostly the reason.

5) Casio launches new WearOS watch: Though, perhaps unsurprisingly, without solar capabilities. Given WearOS has the well-earned reputation of being the Cookie Monster of battery burn, the trivial amount of power that solar delivers in most watches probably wouldn’t last more than a song on WearOS. Still, good to see more options. Hopefully we’ll see Casio find a way to refine what they have sports-wise today, which in my testing of their GBD-H1000 (solar, with FirstBeat Analytics) seemed like a promising vision, but fell pretty far short in reality. For example, there was only one sport mode (running/hiking), which meant if you wanted to use it for a ride – it screwed up all your data.

5) Garmin engineer discussing dual-band GPS implementations: Nothing crazy deep, but some tidbits there for those that are interested.

6) Want a cargo bike emoji? One emoji developer is looking at submitting a cargo bike emoji for consideration, however, he is trying to nail down the design. Give a quick tap on this Twitter vote to help.

7) Equipping cyclists to identify bad bike intersections: This project equipped 700 cyclists with little beepers that they’d tap when they stumbled upon poor/clumsy bike situations. During the trial some 36,000 situations in Amsterdam were identified, giving city planners areas to consider upgrades for. Looking at the map, I’d definitely agree with most of the larger dots.

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, Wahoo, Polar, and a few other firmware updates.

Garmin Swim 2 Firmware Update: Bug fixes

Garmin Fenix 5 & 5 Plus Series BETA Firmware Update: Bug fixes (including fixing a Physio True-up updating issue)

Suunto 5 Firmware Update: Adds turn by turn with Komoot, supports POI interest/navigation

Suunto 9 Firmware Update: Adds Tour battery mode, turn by turn with Komoot, POI, and Suunto Plus Red Bull app.

(Kinda a quiet week for firmware updates)

With that – thanks for reading!

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18 Comments

  1. Antoine Nguyen

    Did you notice that the SRAM AXS Power meter has dropped to 450 USD (from 600?), what a great deal now!

  2. Joe

    Damn. I haven’t used Zwift in a bit as it’s gotten nicer out, so this is the first I’m seeing about ZwiftHub. I load up ZwiftHub before literally every ride to help determine a route. What a huge loss.

  3. Andrew

    Not a single post on Instagram last month? Is the extra one in Feb the reason or are you going for two posts this month? I think the KFC cargo bike would’ve qualified?

    • Yeah, I’ve gotta be careful to not over-deliver here. Given the two Instagram posts in February, March would indeed seem to warrant a skip to keep things on the right progression. 🙂

      (Actually, I remembered at 12:05AM on Apr 1st, and then was like…well…crap me.)

  4. Keren

    Hey Ray,

    Will also be sad to see ZwiftHub go. But it seems ZwiftHacks has already come up with a solution? But Zwift should have something set up already as a matter of course. Good luck to Toby at Wahoo, he will do great there.

    To change the subject but to stay on Zwift. Not sure if you have seen this recent news, but Zwift finally did what they said they would do a year or two ago, and stopped supporting the Milestone Pod app from 1 February. You can still use it to run on Zwift but there is no way to see your data and stats anymore. Or even check the battery level. Lot’s of unhappy Milestone Pod users here:
    link to forums.zwift.com

    I also use a Milestone for my Zwift runs and they shut the app down without any warning. They should have said something at least that it was about to lose support.

    Maybe you can dig a little deeper about this? Seems Zwift just doesn’t care about the pod that they bought.

    Cheers!

    • Bummer, that sucks. Though, somewhat inevitable I suspect. Largely, as I bet that Zwift might not even have on staff any longer the couple people that were behind Milestone. :-/

  5. Onno

    I assume the purpose of the “Trending Now on DC Rainmaker” overlay isn’t to scare off visitors, but in its current form it’s doing just that. While it could be somewhat interesting in theory (but not too much, since I’m obviously already reading the site), having it pop up on every single page and obscuring the real content makes it more annoying than any 3rd party ad I’ve seen here.

    • Yeah, it’s something that’s being tested by the ad company I have the last week. It’s not quite where we want it yet. It seems fine on desktop, but a bit over the top for mobile. Appreciate the feedback – trying to find the right balance is always tricky. But I’ll keep trying!

  6. usr

    Oh, i love FCC internals. So (unsurprisingly, given the first external pictures) same gauge placing as Assioma, but definitely a new design regarding board and battery. Those Powerzero things will be light! Battery cells appear to be similar size 60mAh, but Wahoo using only two per pedal instead of three. And it looks like Wahoo is going for a conventionally sealed cavity instead of playing it safe and flooding the entire pod with resin. On top of that, not only is the board more integrated (less distinct components in addition to the nrf52 they all use), they also skip the magnet for the charging adapter, opting for simple mechanical clipping instead.

  7. RIP ZwiftHub

    ZwiftHub will be sorely missed. It’s worth noting that the developer noted his dream was to work in this space, yet ended up being hired by Wahoo, not Zwift. How dumb can Zwift be? They should’ve hired the guy and had him start by making ZwiftHub’s functionality part of the Companion App.

  8. Helm

    Also interesting around the interwebs:

    ‘Beseffen jullie wel hoe perféct Amsterdam is?’ in de NRC van Stan Putman, dd. 8 april 2021.

    (..) Toch is het heel speciaal wat zich achter uw venster afspeelt, meent de Canadese Amsterdammer Jason Slaughter (44). Het is zelfs zo bijzonder, dat hij ervoor naar Nederland is verhuisd, na omzwervingen langs de VS, het Verenigd Koninkrijk, Taiwan en België. Op zijn YouTube-kanaal Not Just Bikes (link to youtube.com) legt Slaughter uit dat het aangename leven in Nederland alles te maken heeft met de manier waarop ons land is ontworpen. Hij plaatst er filmpjes over Nederlandse geneugten als slimme stoplichten, autoluwe straten en gescheiden fietspaden. Met de video’s bereikt Slaughter een publiek van honderdduizenden mensen. Filmen doet hij met een handzame digitale camera, of, als hij op de fiets zit, met een schokbestendige Go Pro-camera die hij op zijn borst bevestigt.(..)

  9. AJ Moreton

    Hi, do you think or know if there is a Coros Apex 2 arrivng as I am thinking of buying the Apex, but would wait if an Apex 2 is arriving this year…. should I wait or Buy? Tricky…

  10. Brett

    Looking forward to your newsletter!

    • Tom

      My weekly look for new sport tech updates, reminds me to come to your ‘week in review’, and then i find myself looking around.
      Shame it’s not updated as much, it’s always a good read. Don’t simply want to bookmark the other page, as I might never come back here 😉