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Some come, some go. Stryd and BSX

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It's the cycle of life. In general. Some come, others go. There are births and also deaths. And these days we have seen both.

In the case of Stryd and BSX, both are small companies in the sector, with limited resources, a market segment that is very marked and difficult to access both because of the possibilities of becoming known and because of logistics.

I will start with the birth, which is always something happier. Flowers are given (well, in deaths too), there are parties (eh... also in deaths); in short, it is a way to start the article something more positive.

Stryd Live

Stryd, best known for being one of the pioneers in bringing racing power to the market, is releasing a new device. And strangely enough... it takes the power out of the equation.

Why the arrival of this new device and why now? Well, basically because it comes to the market by the hand of Zwift, which has just launched publicly Zwift Run.

The device is not so new, because it is almost the same as the second version of Stryd, i.e. the foot pod, not the first pulse sensor they launched on the market. There are slight changes, the most notable being that the Qi wireless charge is now dispensed with and replaced by a microUSB connector. The clamp is also different, in orange.

But internally they're both exactly the same. It has the same accelerometers and sensors as the Stryd sensor it's derived from.

Stryd Live

What's it for?

If Stryd is a power meter, and the new Stryd Live lacks such metrics, then what is it for? It is a foot pod that can measure distance, pace and cadence very precisely (even more so than via GPS), as well as providing vertical oscillation and ground contact time data.

The fact that it has been launched together with Zwift Run does not mean that it is intended exclusively for indoor training, you can use it perfectly outdoors with the same benefits.

Where's the fun in that? 50% (from $199 for the original to $99 for the new Stryd Live). Even better, if you think that race power will be interesting for your workouts in 6 months time, you can pay to upgrade to the full version. The hardware is there, it's simply a software upgrade.

BSXinsight confirms that they stop selling their product

And now we move on to the obituary. It was something that was already known (terminal patient), but finally the company has confirmed what seemed irreversible. The product will disappear from the market, although the company will make great efforts not to harm its current users too much.

BSXinsight is a non-invasive lactate meter that was launched a few years ago and has even gone through two hardware revisions. But it has become clear that, despite some interest in this type of product, it is not enough to keep the company operational - perhaps ahead of its time, or perhaps a metric that is too advanced for most of us.

Buscador de chollos

BSXinsight

This is the original letter they sent to their buyers.

February 9, 2018

 

We're writing to you as a valued customer and owner of a BSXinsight device.

It's hard to believe that the second generation of BSXinsight devices are already two years old. During that time we've been able to accomplish so much together. But as with all consumer electronic devices, the cost and complexity of continuing to ship and maintain a technology as it matures through its product life cycle keeps increasing. As a result, we have made the difficult decision to stop marketing and producing the BSXinsight effective as of the date of this letter. This includes the following BSXinsight models: XM, XC, XR, XM2, XC2 and XR2.

While the company will continue to maintain servers and offer email technical support for one year, the product will not be enhanced or improved in any way All valid warranty claims will continue to be honored as per the manufacturer warranty agreement.

We understand that for many of you, the BSXinsight has become an integral part of your training and race preparation. BSXinsight will continue to represent a transformative technology, for the first time ever bringing lactate threshold training technology out of the lab and into your own living room.

It has been our pleasure helping you to achieve each of your own personal records. For some, those were private personal bests and others they were Olympic medals - to us each were equally thrilling.

As part of the end of life process, we have decided to release the code of our BSXinsight Garmin Connect IQ app to the open source community. This can be found at https://github.com/bsx-opensource/insight-appAdditionally, we will be publishing an updated app to the Connect IQ store with SmO2 start/stop functionality and FIT file support enabled from supported Garmin products.

While this has been a difficult decision for each team member, we view product end of life as a part of the product life cycle that drives new technology and innovation. Our team continues to be passionately focused on developing revolutionary technologies that improve lives and individual well-being. As such, the end of this chapter in our company's story marks the beginning of a new exciting one that we hope you will join in with us.

We sincerely appreciate your support.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

Happy training!

The BSX Team

While this has been a difficult decision for each team member, we view product end of life as a part of the product life cycle that drives new technology and innovation. Our team continues to be passionately focused on developing revolutionary technologies that improve lives and individual well-being. As such, the end of this chapter in our company's story marks the beginning of a new exciting one that we hope you will join in with us.

As I was saying, the way they are leaving the market is a little less bitter than it could be. They have had the courtesy to maintain the servers and support for another year, and have released the code of their Connect IQ application for external developers to use. Additionally, they will release a final update to support SmO2 functionality in the same Connect IQ application.

If you remember, BSX is the same company that was behind LVL, a hydration monitor for which they launched a funding campaign at KickStarter about a year ago. In theory, leaving BSXinsight aside was done to encourage the development of LVL as a product, but the truth is that nothing new has been heard about it and everything points to it continuing along the same lines.

It probably happened like with the original product. Maybe interesting information, but... too much for the regular user?

And with that... thanks for reading!

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6 Comments

  1. You have to be cautious when buying new products that don't have a big company behind them. In my case, I was one of the pioneers in Spain in acquiring the first Stryd through the initial platform. What is my surprise when they soon release the second version, completely forgetting about the first one to which they no longer provide firmware updates so the old meter is no longer valid.
    Moreover, they don't even have the "decency" to offer a solution to the first ones we bet on Stryd, which would allow access to the second version without having to bear its cost again in an integrated way.

    1. When the second version was released there was a period of time when former buyers were able to buy the new model at a reduced price ($99, that's what I paid for the "upgrade"), although it is true that, if I remember correctly, the offer was only valid for those who supported the campaign at Kickstarter.

  2. Stryd is undoubtedly a leader in measuring power in Running. The next to arrive will be the Update for Android App (iOS is already) more complete and a very interesting novelty as will be the detection of risk of injury, the App will warn us of the risk of injury by inadequate training, resulting from harmful changes in the technique of running (or announced for spring 2018)

  3. Stryd's thing was a song, wanting to charge a lot for an unnecessary device that you can do the same with an application didn't make sense, but of course wanting to charge 199$ for a "device" isn't as bad as wanting to charge 199$ for an application on the Gamin Connect IQ for example. The Garmin HRM tape provides all the data needed to calculate the same power with a software application.

    The BSXinsight thing was a shame, it was a good device but maybe the price they set was too high and it would have been better to lower it substantially to have more sales, recognition and make more money in the long run.

    1. The Garmin 100% software has nothing to do with the Stryd system with a significant portion of pressure sensors on all three axes. I've been training in power zones for a while now and it's another world, more stable and constant than any other metric. At the moment, only Polar offers that option in Running...

  4. No tengo el potenciómetro de Garmin, ni lo he habilitado para mi 935 (con el HRM-run); pero sí Stryd (la sgunda versión, la de footpod) y sus datos son sorprendentemente exactos en lo comprobable (exactitud de distancia), según se desprende también de cada post. Sobre la exactitud de Garmin en potencia a pie, hay bastantes dudas. BSX en teoría va de la mano de Samsung con su nuevo dispositivo de hidratación, pero dejar “tirados” a sus usuarios no es la mejor plataforma de presentación y la confianza difícilmente se recupera (si fructifica, supongo que Samsung servirá de imagen visible). Hay quien ya ha conseguido “independizar” el aparatillo de monitorización del oxígeno muscular incluso de ConnectIQ (muscleoxygentraining.com), Moxy realiza un programa de “recompra” del BSX y otros “retadores” van a entrar a ese mercado: humon hex, oxy4… La oxigenación muscular parece dar datos interesantes, pero todavía requieren de un exceso de intrepretación, muy críptico para el usuario final. BSX fue pionera en hacerla accesible, pero cest la vie. Saludos.

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