Wahoo has acquired virtual cycling platform RGT Cycling, which will be now known as Wahoo RGT.
This marks Wahoo’s second indoor training software acquisition: in 2019 the US company bought Sufferfest and rebranded it as Wahoo SYSTM.
With Wahoo now owning a virtual reality cycling platform along with a training app it could take the fight for indoor-cycling dominance to Zwift.
According to Wahoo, “Wahoo RGT represents the next generation of virtual cycling, allowing cyclists to ride, race and explore on highly-detailed virtual roads, either alone or with others,” which is what RGT did before the acquisition. We’ve asked whether Wahoo plans to add new features, a new interface or upgraded graphics but don’t have any more details as yet.
RGT’s simulation of drafting, cornering and braking is arguably more detailed than Zwift’s, which Wahoo says makes it “less like a video game and more like an immersive cycling simulator.”
As before, users can choose from a library of iconic routes and race courses or upload their own GPX file and let RGT build a virtual version with its Magic Roads feature.
RGT - like Zwift - also has a social component and calendar of virtual events. Subscribers can create, customise, and schedule virtual events like group rides and races and invite athletes from around the world, or join public events created by the RGT community and RGT's brand partners.
So where does that leave Wahoo SYSTM? Wahoo sums SYSTM up as “a comprehensive training platform for cyclists and triathletes that offers personalised workouts paired with immersive, video-based content, as well as yoga, strength, and mental training, all integrated into customizable training plans for cycling and multisport.”
Crucially, however, SYSTM doesn’t have the interactive element - there’s no way of riding virtually with another user, and this is where RGT fills the gap for Wahoo
and could put it in a stronger position than Zwift
In order for users to take advantage of both platforms, Wahoo has created Wahoo X. This is “a new premium subscription service that gives athletes full access to all of the features and content for both Wahoo SYSTM and Wahoo RGT under a single convenient subscription, account, and login.”
Wahoo is offering the new Wahoo X bundled subscription for the same price as the previous standalone SYSTM subscription, which sounds like a pretty good option for existing SYSTM users and might, Wahoo will be hoping, lure away Zwift's audience.
Now, with a VR platform and a training app bundled together, Wahoo may even have the advantage over Zwift, which currently doesn't offer anything any fitness assessment like SYSTM's 4DP profile.
Wahoo says the single sign-on Wahoo account will also work across other Wahoo products and touchpoints, including the ELEMNT Companion App, Wahoo Fitness App, and wahoofitness.com.
“The acquisition of RGT Cycling and the launch of the new Wahoo X subscription service gives athletes more options, more convenience, and more control over how they train,” said Mike Saturnia, CEO of Wahoo. “With a single subscription and one account that works across the entire suite of Wahoo products, we’re able to deliver unprecedented value and a best-in-class experience that seamlessly integrates the Wahoo ecosystem of hardware and software solutions, allowing athletes to get the most out of their training, whether indoors or outdoors. And while the benefits are best realised through the Wahoo ecosystem, we’re committed to ensuring that our expanded offering of comprehensive training and virtual cycling software remains open and compatible with key industry players and standards. Athlete choice and freedom will continue to be at the heart of everything we do at Wahoo."
Wahoo SYSTM and Wahoo RGT are both available for iOS, Android, macOS and Windows. Existing SYSTM and RGT subscribers will be migrated to Wahoo X at no additional charge. A 14-day free trial is available, allowing new users to explore the entire suite of content and functionality in both apps. Subscriptions for Wahoo X are priced at US$14.99 a month or US$129 a year, though Wahoo notes that the annual option is currently not available through the Apple App Store or Google Play.
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