GPS Developer TomTom Set to Deliver Two Sports Watches


TomTom has delivered a pair of GPS-based sports watches, one that is focused primarily on runners while the other is designed for a more multi sports approach that should appeal to a much broader range of athletes.

The company had two design goals win mind when they built the TomTom Runner and the TomTom Multi-Sport GPS sport watches. It believes that most existing watches in this field are too bulky and cumbersome and so sought to shrink the size and make it a slim, easily worn device. At the same time it was seeking to use a large display to show the graphical training tools. It believes that it reached both of these goals as well as simplifying the use of the watch with its one button control.

The watches are both built on TomTom’s Graphical Training Partner, a program that allows users to track vital statics in real time. It has three basic modes: Race, Goal and Zone. Race allows you to vie against a recently set time or your personal best. Goal allows you to set a number of parameters such as time, distance or calorie and then track how you are doing against your goals. Zone has users set targets such as pace or heart rate and then allows you to track your progress during a workout. A heart monitor for this is an option.

Among the watches other features are an indoor tracker to so that a user can track activity on devices such as a treadmill; QuickGPSFix uses GPS and GLONASS satellite technology to quickly find users’ precise location.

Since many runners and other athletes already often use other apps to track and share progress the watches have the multi-platform compatability and can sync with a variety of alterative platforms including the TomTom MySports website, MapMyFitness, RunKeeper, TrainingPeaks and MyFitnessPal

All of these and other features are standard in both watches while the TomTom Multi-Sport also allows multi-sport athletes to track their distance, time, speed and other key metrics when they cycle or swim and includes a built-in altimeter and a bike mount.

Last year TomTom teamed with Nike for a GPS watch and it ran Nike Fuel but it is not clear if this one will also support Nike’s platform.

The TomTom Runner and TomTom Multi-Sport will be available in Summer 2013. The market for sports watches is a fairly crowded one, and one that will get even more packed if all of the rumored hybrid smartwatches that have been reported from the likes of Apple, Samsung, Nokia, Microsoft and others actually do come to market. I expect that including all of the ones that have appeared on Kickstarter their will be a glut on the market of these types of devices and users should spend some time considering how and when they plan to use such devices to see what will best fit their needs.

Wahoo Fitness Expands Cycling Offerings with RFLKT Bike Computer

The market for smartphone-based cycling computers is a crowded one but with enhancements in phones constantly coming along, developers continually have room to differentiate their products from rivals, and that is what Wahoo Fitness is looking to do with its latest offering.

Wahoo has long been a developer in this space using the iPhone as a core piece of its offering and its latest is no different. The company’s RFLKT Bike Computer is designed to be used with an iPhone 4S and the recently released iPhone 5..

There are several components to the product. A user mounts the RFLKT unit on the handlebars of the bike and it displays the information that a cyclist needs to evaluate their ride. Among the data that it allows users to monitor are power, speed, cadence, heart rate, pace, distance, location, and course.

However the data is gathered using the iPhone, which the owner can keep in a pocket or another safer place than the handlebars, and its various built-in features as well as third party apps as needed. The phones GPS helps plot out your path and its Bluetooth capabilities transmit the data to the RFLKT unit.

A user can use a favorite cycling app with the device and switch between screens. The iPhone enables a user to customize the look and feel of the appearance on the RFLKT’s display.

Also available for use are a host of technologies and apps from Wahoo including its speed and cadence sensor for iPhone, heart rate monitor and its Power Trainer. A user can also check in with their favorite social networking site or run playlists via the device as well as monitor their riding stats.

Wahoo Fitness’ RFLKT Bike Computer is currently being demonstrated at the Interbike 2012 trade show in Las Vegas and is expected to ship in December with pricing to be determined.

New York Times Comes Full Circle With Online Olympic Track Cycling Video

Like other Olympic sports with global popularity but only in niche locales, track cycling comes to the masses every four years at the Summer Olympics.

There were few sports more prominent in the United States in the early 1900s when six-day races were all the rage for celebrities and high society theater patrons who made bets on riders competing in Madison Square Garden.

London Olympics' track cycling venue

Bobby Walthour, a track cycling champion at the time, was among the country’s highest paid athletes and made more than $100,000 a year. His exploits on and off the track were prominently displayed in the New York Times — including his image in a display advertisement for Camel cigarettes.

How ironic is it that it’s the online edition of the New York Times’ (Page 1, Aug. 3) that  featured a video, detailed charts and accompanying audio explaining the nuances of the sport’s most well-known event — the match sprint?

The video, “A Simple Bicycle Race,” begins with the description: “In the track cycling match sprint, riders go around a 250-meter track three times. Typically, they go slowly at the start, until someone makes a move.”

The narration of the video describes the event’s strategy and takes viewers around the track in animation and via the perspective of two riders’ head cameras via a split screen.

In addition to the Olympics, track cycling has a yearly World Cup circuit and a World Championship, the latter of which was last held in the United States in 2005 at California State University, Dominguez Hills in Carson, California.

The Olympic track cycling competition continues through Aug. 6.

To view the New York Times’ video, visit: Olympic Track Cycling

James Raia is an editor and publisher in Sacramento, California. Visit his site:

Wednesday Wi-Fi Whispers: Olympic Road Race was a Missed Wi-Fi Opportunity

We’re still scratching our heads here at Mobile Sports Report over the apparent lack of infrastructure planning that led to cellular congestion problems during last weekend’s Olympic men’s cycling road race. Our big, unanswered question: Why didn’t organizers put a temporary Wi-Fi network in place to handle the totally expected wireless traffic?

It can’t be a surprise anymore to anyone that people in general and sports fans in particular are going to be big users of mobile devices at events. Cycling races, especially loop-course races like the Olympics, are probably going to be at the top tier when it comes to mobile data usage since people typically sit in one place along the course to see the riders as they come by every lap — and then spend a lot of time waiting in between.

These days, that waiting is filled with mobile device use and it was a huge miss to not turn the Olympic race into some kind of Wi-Fi endeavor that could have benefitted multiple parties, including the fans. That organizers didn’t do something like install one of the mobile Wi-Fi networks our friends at Xirrus set up during the Tour de France seems to be a huge error, like Michael Phelps forgetting how to finish a butterfly race.

Why didn’t Cisco, which issued several press releases before the Olympics touting its role in helping with the IT infrastructure of the games, push to make the road race a commercial for its sports services? It’s not my marketing budget to spend, but I think Cisco could have done a really cool job by putting in a Wi-Fi network, having digital displays all around the course so that fans could see the action away from where they were sitting, and maybe have an app (like the cool Tour Tracker app) that people could download to stay abreast of the action on their phones and tablets.

Instead — we are left with a lot of finger-pointing, companies saying it wasn’t their problem, blah, blah, blah. The fact that a big crowd was going to be at the race and that it would want to use mobile devices wasn’t a last-minute secret. Big event organizers everywhere should learn from the Olympic failure and think ahead to see if there isn’t a Wi-Fi opportunity that can produce a positive outcome for all involved.

Ruckus Gets London Wi-Fi Gig

More Wi-Fi London news — the folks at Ruckus have won a contract to supply outdoor Wi-Fi antennas in London for operator Telefonika U.K.’s O2, which according to Light Reading have already been appearing on lampposts. Though it’s not a stadium win, it is another vote for Ruckus’ architecture.

When Do Olympic Events Start? Google Will Tell You

Now that the opening ceremony is out of the way, let the Olympic Games begin. And if you want to know when any event will start, Google is ready to tell you — and will even handily sync it to your local time, all the better for those of us who want to watch things in real time, no matter how far we are from London.

As a cycling fan I knew the men’s road race was nearing its start time over in London but I didn’t know exactly when it kicked off, so off I went to Google — where I found a handy cycling schedule to the right hand side of the screen, telling me that the race started at 2:00 a.m. my time. Entering “swimming” in the Google search bar brought up an equally impressive interactive schedule (screen shot to the left) with all heat race times. I am assuming Google has this info sussed out for all events on all days. A handy and easy thing and a good way for the Googlers to make sure they get more than their share of search revenue during the games, by being the best at pointing people where they want to go.

With NBC promising to stream everything live, Google’s “Watch Online” button will probably get quite a workout. When it comes to the men’s road race Saturday I know Mark Cavendish is the favorite and if it comes to a field sprint he won’t be beaten. But Olympic races never seem to go as planned, and remember Cav ain’t racing here with the full Sky team but only four other teammates, with no radios so it’s not a given that Cav will deliver. Our good friend John Wilcockson earlier this year sussed out the strategies we may see on the London course. I’m going to go with Peter Sagan as my pick, just to seem smart.

NBC Increases Tour de France Coverage, Including Multi-Platform Mobile Options

In addition to increased broadcast coverage, including live coverage on the first weekend, the NBC Sports Group has substantially increased its internet coverage of the race’s 99th edition.

Collectively called Tour de France LIVE, race coverage will be available online at, and through the Tour de France LIVE Mobile app.

The network will offer users two premium-subscription products which will give fans a multi-platform, all-encompassing viewing experience to the Tour.

Tour de France LIVE offers live streaming video of every stage in full HD, with the ability to pause, rewind and slow-mo the video. While watching live coverage online, viewers will also have access to a live GPS tracking map to follow the riders’ progress or to see an enhanced interactive map for each stage.

Subscribers can also personalize their Tour experience by choosing their favorite riders and teams to track throughout the Tour.

For iPhone and iPad users as a Android users fans can purchase the Tour de France LIVE Mobile app.

All the features of the online experience will be mirrored in the Tour de France LIVE Mobile app, including live video of every stage, and is sold separately from the online product

Stages 7 and 8, which will air live on NBC, will also be streamed live for free, on

Here are some more helpful links:


TV times for NBC coverage. Will probably be like NHL and have some on the former Versus channel. Check your cable provider listings.

Visit NBC Tour de France app for addition mobile viewiing options.