Sea Otter: Hands-on with Garmin’s 1000

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Everything is coming together

What does the blue button do? Whatever you want it to!
What does the blue button do?
Whatever you want it to!

Following this week’s Edge 1000 release, we had a swing by the Garmin booth at Sea Otter this week to take a peek at the electronics giant’s latest and greatest.  While many of the features were known and expected, the way in which the company has integrated its offerings is impressive, a little surprising, and has interesting implications for the future.

The abilities to gather leg-specific power data and display Shimano Di2 gear selections alone should be enough to get any bike geek’s heart pumping- but really aren’t high on many mountain bikers’ wish lists.  .  More relevant on our side of things are the Edge remote and Virb camera integration.

SONY DSCReplicating the Edge head unit’s hard buttons, the Edge Remote also has a variable button that can be configured to perform any number of Edge tasks.  This includes telling the Edge’s to tell a Virb camera to start or stop filming.  This possibility means buying into the entire Garmin ecosystem, but it sure seemed slick.

The head-bone's connected to the camera-bone...
The head-bone’s connected to the camera-bone…

Having seen Garmin’s present, it’s easy to envision a future in which handlebar and light outputs are programmed and coordinated via a head unit- perhaps adjusting to rider speed, distance from home, or time before sunrise.  A time in which new trails can be not only discovered online, but also previewed for views and flow thanks to segment-linked video.  These scenarios are certainly possible- and may be closer than we think.

Comments (10)

    FFS, why don’t people just go out and ride their bikes rather than worrying about all this guff!

    If you are a company like Garmin, what else are you going to do? but I agree that it has precious little to do with my experience of cycling.

    I like a bit of tech stuff myself, but yeah, when I look at that advert, it does make me think that having all that option to faff with gadgets would really suck the basic joy out of a bike ride for me.

    I’m with the primitives here, I just want to ride my bike. There may be a point to using some of this if you are a serious or professional racer, but do us regular riders need it? I think not!

    Isnt anyone capable of using a map and compass ?

    well thought out technology and riding your bike don’t need to be mutually exclusive in my opinion. that said it is important to remember that you are out there to ride your bike in the first place. the data is useful/interesting for more than just pro’s and the close integration of camera/gps/bike info etc just means less faff, not more. you set it up before you leave with a route (especially on road) and whilst riding you have a single pre-programmed button to press on a wireless remote. fiddle at home, not on the trail. analyse at home not whilst riding.

    Hmm, I think anyone “fiddling at home” to programme their light to come on when it’s dark needs to be out on their bike more!

    although, having said that, I’ve spent a fair amount of time planning routes, and used google earth for road routes to see whether bigger roads might be worth avoiding.

    So it turns out I’ve spent plenty of time planning at home to maximise fun out on the bike…

    Doesn’t look that complicated – once you’ve set it up, it’s just a question of making sure it’s charged and switching it on at the right time. I’m not sure how that would get in the way of enjoying your ride, and personally I like being able to download the ride info later just to see how I did.

    Fascinating in as much as with current UCI and BC bans on helmet cams in races and no chest or bike mounted cams even in practise, does this mean they will have to stop the use of bike mounted GPS in races, an almost essential tool in the road and XC racers in race information stream because they now also provide camera functions which are not allowed….. bit of a space here that needs watching because will the UCI feel strong enough to take on Garmin, or will Garmin feel cycling is just a minnow in its global aspirations

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