Wahoo Fitness, the company behind the KICKR turbo trainer used by Team Sky, have thrown their hat into the GPS ring with the launch of a bike computer ‘to rival the Garmin Edge 810’.
The GPS-enabled computer, dubbed the ELEMNT by Wahoo and priced at £279.99, comes with ANT+, Bluetooth Smart and WiFi connectivity, allowing riders to view key ride metrics, follow a pre-planned route, receive call, text and email notifications, and, in a feature which as far as we know is unique, track other riders in real-time.
The ELEMNT’s connectivity means it can be paired with Wahoo’s smartphone app (available on iOS and Android), which is then used to customise the large high-contrast ‘DayBright’ screen (which measures 2.7” diagonally). The screen can display all the information you’d expect, including metrics such as speed, distance, elevation, heart rate, power and turn-by-turn navigation cues and plenty more. The black and white display is operated by buttons, rather than being touchscreen. Claimed battery life for the ELEMNT is 17 hours.
The unit also features ‘QuickLook’ LED indicators, which are essentially strips LEDs on the left-hand side and top of the computer, providing a visual indication for programmable alerts and data, including speed, heart rate, power, turn-by-turn navigation cues and more. We imagine that the faster you’re riding, the higher your heart rate, or the closer you are to your next turn on a GPS route, the more (or less) LEDs will light up. How useful that is in real life, as opposed to actually reading the data on the display, we’ll only find out when we get to play with the ELEMNT for ourselves.
The ELEMNT can also be integrated with third-party platforms such as Strava and RideWithGPS, meaning riders can automatically download saved routes from their account, and wireless upload data files post-ride.
The computer is also fully integrated with the rest of the Wahoo product line, giving you the ability to control the KICKR indoor trainer directly from your handlebar without a computer, tablet or smartphone in sight. The resistance of a ride can also be recreated indoors by uploading a saved course, with the ELEMNT matching it to the ride’s GPS profile.
“Using a bike computer shouldn’t be the hardest part of your ride,” said Wahoo Fitness CEO Chip Hawkins. “We saw a need for a well-designed GPS-enabled cycling computer that simplified the riding experience rather than complicated it. We solved that need with the ELEMNT.”
The ELEMNT is set to land later this year and Wahoo will start taking pre-orders on www.wahoofitness.com this week.