Polar’s been slowly moving into the mainstream, first switching from their proprietary wireless data transmission protocol to Bluetooth 4.0, and now they’re poised to allow direct Strava uploads. It’s all starting with the new V650 GPS cycling computer and updates to their Keo Power pedals.
The new V650 gets a color touchscreen, GPS recording and built in barometric pressure sensor for more accurate altitude data. That last bit not only keeps your climbing tally correct, but allows for better real time ascent and descent data while riding. It also captures temperature, and you can set it to show whatever you want on the screen.
Better yet, the software is completely upgradeable, meaning it’ll update as new features and technologies are added. Oh, and it has a light on the front to help you be seen by motorists…
One of the first updates they’re considering is the ability to create ride routes in Flow, then send them to the computer to guide you along the roads. They already have bread crumb style navigation on the V800 watch (which gets a new blue band color option), but with a big beautiful screen, the V650 could potentially do much more.
It uses Bluetooth 4.0 to send data directly to your iOS or Android device, allowing for instant ride analysis within the app. It can also plug into your computer and sync to both PCs and Macs. From there, Polar’s Smart Coaching features let you know how much rest you need, how your training went and how many calories you burned.
It’ll also pair with other Bluetooth sensors, like Stages’ power meter and Wahoo Fitness’ speed/cadence sensors and more. It gets about 10 hours per charge with both GPS and BT turned on.
The 2.8″ color touch screen lets you swipe from one view to the next, and you can customize the different data points shown and how many of them you want to appear on each screen.
The data is then sent through the cloud to their online Flow web service, which populates the charts and graphs with data from your last ride. In addition to the standard speed/distance and other metrics, it also visualized your HR or power data into beautiful charts and graphs. It’ll even show you where you went on the map.
When it comes available in early October, the V650 will allow for uploads to Strava through their app or through Flow. Retail is $265.95, or $319.95 when bundled with their BT HR monitor. One future feature they know there’s demand for is being able to create routes and upload them to the device, so our bet/hope is that’ll get added sooner rather than later.
Not shown (yet), the Keo Power pedals get a lower priced, single sided power meter option. The top tier system, Keo Power, retails for $2,200 and includes both pedals and two power meter pods for true left and right side power. The new $1,300 Keo Essentials still gives you both pedals, but only includes one power meter pod, so it’s doubling the reading on one side to send your computer a power reading. They’ll be available in early October.