July 8th 2019
Another shuffling of the deck chairs in the indoor cycling space that will no doubt be a topic of discussion for the next few days across the Internet and beyond. While not in the same pricing bracket as the Garmin / Tacx acquisition we saw earlier in the year, it’s an interesting move by Wahoo who will finally have a training platform to call their own to accompany their indoor training hardware eco-system.
The Sufferfest revamped their app around six months ago with dynamic overlay, non-video options for their workouts, and have recently launched training plans around the specific demands of Esports indoor cycling.
Wahoo have always been without a real software platform (No, I don’t consider the Wahoo Fitness app a ‘training platform’). They’ve left the software companies to do their thing while they worked on what they knew – hardware. That changes today.
Indoor Trainer Branded/Associated/Owned Software
BKool – BKool Cycling Simulator.
CycleOps – VirtualTraining (Now known as Rouvy but no longer associated with CycleOps).
Elite – Elite Real Video.
JetBlack – MyJetBlack Training App.
Kinetic – KineticFit.
Magene – OneLap.
Tacx – TTS Tacx Training Software – Now TDA (Tacx Desktop App).
WattBike – Wattbike Hub.
Wahoo – Sufferfest.
The stand-out on the list above is WattBike. Not quite a trainer company, but a company who actually HAVE a smart bike on the market today.
WattBike and Sufferfest would have been a match made in indoor cycling heaven. One that could have taken a leaf or two from Peloton, or a chapter, or their whole play book. Minus their trademark lawyers.
WattBike recently announced their “Commercial Only” Atom X. The redesigned ‘ATOM’ resolving all the shortcomings of that unit. (And let’s not beat around the bush here, there were some pretty big issues with the ATOM). The ATOM X even comes with a computer and screen – Perfect for loading the Sufferfest on as their training software of choice…. but it’s not to be.
Wahoo Interoperability – Will it continue?
It has to. Zwift wouldn’t be where it is today without Wahoo, and vice-versa. The last thing either party would want to do is rock that mutually beneficial boat they’re sailing on. Same goes for any other indoor training platform that has a solid subscriber base (TrainerRoad comes to mind).
Locking hardware features to a single software platform never works well. Tacx Neo 2 pedal scan analysis anyone? If you’re not using Tacx Desktop App, bad luck.
There are no planned changes in The Sufferfest business offering or structure as a result of this acquisition.Wahoo Announces Acquisition of The Sufferfest (Press Release – July 8th 2019)
If you own a Wahoo trainer then I wouldn’t be too worried about compatibility with whatever platform you choose.
New logo maybe? (A GPLama creative MSPAINT production)