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Timex’s One GPS Is Fully Connected, Are Cycling GPS Units Next?

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Partnering with AT&T, Timex has just released a sports watch that is directly connected to the outside world. Most of our devices can connect to things via Bluetooth, ANT+ or NFC, but that means you always have to carry your phone with you for the device to communicate through.

The Timex One GPS+ does all that, but without your phone. Pretty cool for sure, but primarily intended as a wearable for running or other on-your-feet sports, it leaves a wide open question. When do cyclists get the same? Check out what this thing can do, and what it could mean for your ride after the jump…

Timex One GPS+

Timex has packed a lot into their new device. Starting with Bluetooth compatibility, automatic uploads to Strava, GPS and music players, it can do all of the major functions we want. This is pretty cool for only $399, and you can add a heart rate monitor for another $50. Where it really starts to depart from the crowd is that it comes with one year of wireless data through AT&T, and it can send and receive messages without having your phone nearby. For the intended user of this device, the added benefit of not having to carry a phone around is great because of how large and heavy our phones are becoming.

You can check out the Timex One GPS+ online. The video above does a great explanation of how this all works together.

There is a common evolution here. If you have looked through the device store of your phone service provider lately, you’ll notice there are a lot more connected devices available today than just phones. iPad paved the way for connected devices being more common, and for phone companies providing service to more than just phones. Its easy to forget, but the very first iPad was only released in 2010. This segment moves very, very fast.



There is a large door open here as these devices start to progress. Inevitable as it was, this paves the way to soon being able to leave your expensive and bulky phone behind when you go for a ride, but still have the peace of mind to contact someone in a pinch.

On a bike, the weight of a smart phone is not too big of an issue, however the concern of smashing a $600 phone in a crash is always there. GPS devices for bikes are typically a bit more durable than standard electronics since they are designed to be taken on a ride, plus they are almost always waterproof.

Carrying-a-smartphone-on-a-bike-rideA Samsung GS4 can be a tight squeeze into the accessory pocket of hydration packs. A trip over the bars and that phone will be taking a direct hit with something. If we can move along to being able to ride connected without an actual phone, would you buy in?

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9 years ago

This will be less appealing to cyclists.

My phone is also my music player which means headphones connect to it. If my computer on my stem is now my phone I don’t know if running headphones to it will be practical. So that means carrying another device for music. Fine, but now we have subtracted a device and added another and lost a little functionality.

Also, carrying a phone is much more difficult for a runner. Often then have no pockets or if they do the motion of running swings it around awkwardly. This isn’t the case for a cyclist.

Most of us who are taking our phones on rides are putting them in impact protection cases. Sure, going over the bars on to our backs is a concern but I dont think its a problem anyone is clamoring to solve. Especially with the cost of the extra data plan added on.

It’s more likely that peripherals will get more and more compatible with phones than this happening.

Is anyone out there trying to put a data plan on to digital camera?

Although if you can stuff all of this in to a pair of sunglasses like recon jet is trying to, then you might be on to something.

The future of cycling computers can’t resemble a phone. Phones are too good being other things.

SRM is about to come out with the DSLR of bike computers in the PC8.

The market for “point and shoot” cycling computers is going to get smaller and smaller.

9 years ago

Not true Greg, I don’t want to carry my phone at all and I am a cyclist.

I have been dying to get rid of my iphone or to get a smaller iphone. Of course they are going bigger now, yay market trends. I despise carrying this thing with me and don’t listen to music while I ride busy roads, as that would be very dumb.

I’ve recently wished for a watch that can also make calls. Bu no, they all rely on the stupid phones. I miss tiny phones and the direction of things like the ipod shuffle. I don’t want a heavy, jewelry like, fragile computer phone with me on my bike at all anymore.

9 years ago

Not true, huh? Ok… Well, Since you’re a cyclist and I’m not… You trolling, bro?

I text while I ride, I take pictures and I listen to music while I ride. Just like most of the people I ride with. I know it sounds like mysticism but I can do all sorts of things once I take my hands off the bars and manipulating my phone is one of them.

Also, a watch effectively eliminates one of your hands from interacting with it. So now this device has to call and text and crap and only need one hand to do so.

9 years ago

the marketing people just have to say how many nano-grams less this weighs than a phone and they’ll get a ton of weight-weenie buyers! If you have the money for more monthly charges then why not, it’s cool and looks very functional and different than anything else on the market. Looks like they got the interface right too (though the typing looks difficult, maybe speech to text?)

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