Wahoo has expanded Wahoo X, its training software package, with new features and updates including Outdoor Workouts, integrated Voice Chat, a new virtual Real Road, as well as new structured training plans and cross-training workouts.
Wahoo acquired RGT (Road Grand Tours) earlier this year, bundling it with Systm, which itself replaced another Wahoo acquisition, Sufferfest.
While its virtual cycling rival Zwift only recently launched the Hub, its first piece of hardware, Wahoo now has all the hardware and software necessary to dominate the indoor training sphere: there’s a smart bike, a whole range of turbo trainers, heart rate monitor chest straps, speed and cadence sensors, a smart fan, a riser and a desk… and now it will be hoping these updates to Wahoo X will take it one step closer.
What’s new with Wahoo Systm?
Systm, Wahoo X’s training app, is launching a new integration with the Elemnt range of GPS bike computers. Users can now sync their indoor workouts with their Wahoo X device, meaning they can complete structured workouts indoors or outdoors. Once synced, an interval session is displayed on the head unit as a graph with target power for each block – and once done it syncs back in with the Systm training plan.
If you find it tough to keep the power on indoors, you can also take Wahoo’s notoriously hard 4DP test outside.
Instead of using one metric (eg FTP in Zwift) Wahoo uses four, with the aim of better targeting your strengths and weaknesses. These are neuromuscular power, maximal aerobic power, threshold power and anaerobic capacity – hence ‘four dimensional power’.
Currently Zwift doesn’t offer an outdoors workout option, though Wahoo’s other competitor, TrainerRoad, does.
Systm is also growing its library of workouts and videos with new training content that includes the recent release of On Location Portugal, adding to the On Location series. Wahoo says there are now over 750 workouts available on Systm including cycling, yoga, strength & mobility, running, swimming, and mental training.
Zwift has a vast number of workouts by comparison for all amounts of time you can spare – and of course you can create your own, too.
What’s new with Wahoo RGT?
Wahoo RGT is the brand’s virtual riding and racing platform, and that gets a new Voice Chat feature that Wahoo says is designed to further enhance its immersive virtual riding experience. Riders will have the option for voice chat ‘in app’, with other riders, eliminating the need for a third party app such as Discord.
This feature has multiple uses from social chat on group rides through to race radio in the increasingly popular RGT virtual races, which are now approved by five national cycling federations.
Wahoo is launching the ‘Dunoon Crossover’ on RGT – a brand new gravel ‘Real Road’, based on a new destination due to open in Scotland soon.
According to Wahoo this will be the first realistic gravel and mtb experience in the virtual riding category. When the rider hits a singletrack off-road section, the resistance changes based on the ride surface. As in real off-road life, where overtaking on singletrack is not generally feasible, riders must now time their sprints and overtakes or face huge resistance for riding in the virtual hedge.
This addition takes Wahoo’s ‘Real Road’ library to 13. It already includes regions in Belgium, Italy, France, the UK and the USA – De Ronde is there and so is Canary Wharf.
Wahoo says it has also improved and enhanced the ‘Magic Roads’ feature – which allows subscribers to upload their own routes via a GPX file and ride, share and create events on them.
These are not detailed representations like the 13 Real Roads – which, according to Wahoo’s James Vickers, are so accurate that even the traffic lights of the Canary Wharf course are in the right place (though you don’t have to stop on red). The gradients and the distance are replicated in Magic Roads but you’re not getting your ride in the same realism – yet.
According to Mike Saturnia, CEO at Wahoo: “Wahoo X is the ultimate all-in-one app for cyclists offering incredible variety, immersive experiences and comprehensive training. Whether training indoors or outdoors, our best-in-class hardware products combined with innovative software creates a unique and complete integrated training experience. Our mission is to build a better athlete in all of us, and the latest enhancements to Wahoo X truly delivers. Our Wahoo Sports Science Team are continuously testing and pushing the limits, so we can offer the best plans, training and expertise when it comes to Wahoo X.”
Obviously Mike Saturnia would say that, but it looks as though Wahoo is intent on closing the gap. Zwift is still the more popular (though it will never disclose exactly how many subscribers it has at any given time) but for those who want a realistic, immersive experience, don’t want to worry about hardware compatibility, don’t want to bother with third-party apps for communicating and who – perhaps counterintuitively – want the ability to do their workouts outdoors, Wahoo X would be a sound choice.
The subscription costs exactly the same as Zwift’s ($14.99 per month) but some people could be ticking more boxes with Wahoo’s offering.