Digital Toys For Riders
Who here doesn’t want to share the good times with friends around the world? Almost nobody I would guess, even the stodgy and old riders out there enjoy a saucy forwarded email now and again (but not multiple times a day please!) The internet’s got our world all sticky and swapping experiences with everyone, scary if you think about, or not. I choose to have fun with it and as such have been toying with a few new tech gadgets on my latest tours.
The first (of two) shines a light on the route itself, making the road the hero with you “checking in” along he way… mile after mile. Tracking your ride for future shares and reminders is just part of the Rever app‘s whole package. Sure, it can record distance, time elapsed, top speed and stores it all in the cloud but with an online subscription to the mapmaker’s website, users can integrate the well-known and highly-resourced printed series of ButlerMaps’ routes into their own ride preparation. Utilizing the maps’ data and intelligence, the Rever app melds the analog and digital worlds into one ride-recording application.
Protip… if you happen to use an old iPhone as your mp3 server while riding, the GPS chip inside will also track you on Rever. No need to have cell service to do so, although you would need some wifi to share and sync your tracked data after the ride. This plan then also saves the battery of your active cell phone for important things like SOS calls and Instagram posts.
And at the time of writing this, sponsored ride campaigns offer cash and prizes just for riding more miles than the next person. A win-win for both the online vendor and the riders out there.
Second toy/tool I’ve been playing with on the road, is the Sena communications and camera systems, specifically the Sena 20S and the Sena Prism camera. Bringing home a two-dimensional line from a ride like that is one thing… but being able to share the curves and the textures, the scenery and the camaraderie of the ride in full color video is a whole other game. Key feature differentiating the Sena package from the GoPro camera system is the ability to record not only the image and sounds of the ride but also your music and conversations along the way. Makes for a WAY better Facebook post of you can describe what the hell that spot on the road is with a play-by-play narrative. In the moment, you can savor the moment, and replay that moment again when you get home… around the world if you like! No extra wiring necessary, the communication system’s kit is already in place and offering all the necessary inputs! And with a learned set of hand gestures, taps and turns, you can control not only the conversation, but also the playback while still on the ride!
While technically, the video quality and specs don’t stand up to the current state of the art, creative use of bluetooth technology makes for a fun and useful product. And given the amount of mounting hardware provided directly with the product, all in one package, makes the choice is easy… unless you aspire to shoot the next ‘On Any Sunday.’ In which case you’ll need two cameras!
You take the good, you take the bad, you take then both and there you have the Facts of Life. You’ve got a GPS-repeatable track of the trip, and the sights and sounds of your crew on the road… your blog fans are gunna flip for your next post!