If you’ve already been Zwifting this morning or last night, you might have noticed a new feature: Video highlight uploads to Strava. This new feature will automatically capture certain key moments (such as unlocking a new level/etc…), while also allowing you to manually trigger a 15-second screen recording.
The cool part though? The manually triggered option is actually *retroactive* for the past 15 seconds. So it’s like an instant replay option, enabling you to record that sprint win after the fact (versus starting the recording beforehand…and probably losing the sprint finish).
Once your ride is complete, you’ll be able to choose which video to upload to Strava (plus whatever photos you want). Additionally, the video is shown within your completed ride on the Zwift companion app.
Notably, Zwift is the first company to leverage Strava’s video API. As usual with APIs, it is not super clear whether or not any other companies were given such an opportunity, or if the video API is offered to other developers going forward (as the photo API is limited to a subset of partners). Still, it is good to see that Strava has opened up the option for 3rd party apps to upload videos, a feature that they launched last June.
How it works:
As of today, the feature is available on iOS and macOS devices. Zwift says it’ll arrive shortly to “TVOS, Android, and other devices”. On the upcoming “other devices” list, I’m not quite sure why they just didn’t say Windows and iPad, given that’s the only two types left for ‘other devices’. But hey, maybe Zwift is about to roll out Zwift to airplane seatback TVs or something, and this distinction is important.
In any case, there are basically two ways to use this (which are combinable):
A) Automated triggers: It just records certain “notable moments” such as completing a route for the first time, unlocking a level or item, a segment jersey, etc…
B) Manually triggers: You’ll tap the movie icon on the Action bar, which triggers the capture of the previous 15 seconds.
To begin with the automated side, I actually had this trigger on a few rides and runs over the past few weeks. So, you can see some of these here. In his case when I unlocked the Metric Century Kit (in one session), it recorded for some time period before the actual achievement (the flash you see at the end was me taking a normal screenshot):
That means at first it’s like ‘Umm, nice easy desert riding there DCR…’, and then boom – finally, the achievement appears.
Next, there’s the manual capture option. You’ll see the little video icon show up on the ‘Action Bar’ at the bottom:
Just simply tap that, and it records the previous 15 seconds and saves it automatically. Given it was the previous 15 seconds, there’s no timer or such on the screen as it’s just saving what already happened in the past. However, you can’t do this (trigger it) from the companion app yet, but Zwift says that’s the goal.
Once you finish your ride, on the same screen where you’d have uploaded/selected your screenshots, you’ll find the ability to save/choose a video. You can only select a single video per upload (despite Strava supporting multiple videos when you manually upload to the platform, perhaps there’s an API limit there). You can still upload multiple photos alongside as before.
Now, what’s kinda cool is that these are also saved to your device as video files (just like screenshots were). So you could trim them a bit and re-upload them to Strava manually if you wanted. Here are the screenshot recorded file files on my Mac, when using Zwift on my Mac:
If you were to record on Apple TV, it’ll automatically sync into your iCloud photo library (back to your phone/etc…), which is pretty cool (it should anyway, mine didn’t quite sync yet for whatever reason). Note that it will ask you to confirm permissions the first time you take a screenshot on your Apple TV.
Finally, you can disable this entire feature if you want to in settings options:
It’s really as simple as that!
I like this feature. I’ve long advocated for built-in video captures within Zwift, and it’s awesome to see this here – and, to see it relatively easy to operate/use for uploading to Strava. And, likewise, on the Strava side, it’s cool to see this show up there.
Undoubtedly, someone at this point will say “wish they would have fixed/changed XYZ thing instead”, but that’s counteracted by all the people in the Zwift Price Rise post that asked for more features from Zwift (or the Strava Price Rise post where people asked the same). So in this case, well, they delivered. I suppose damned if you do, damned if you don’t.
With that – thanks for reading!