Today ZWIFT launches their new Zwift Hub smart trainer – designed to make connecting to and riding the popular training platform even easier. I got a sneak peak at Zwift HQ and this one looks impressive – and priced at under US$500, it is poised to disrupt the smart trainer market.
I could hear jaws drop and whispered gasps of disbelief when the ZWIFT crew announced the pricing of their new HUB smart trainer at just under US$500, at their recent launch in Long Beach CA. After a couple minutes of confused looks from the invited media, our questions started crackling like Jiffy Pop on a hot stove…
• Accuracy: reported to be +/- 2.5%
• Max wattage: 1800w
• Percent grade simulated incline: 16% max
None of these claims have been verified yet by PEZ, as we’re waiting for our test unit to arrive – but the promise could have huge impact on the smart trainer category – considering that most comparable trainers are priced around $1200.
The trainer is aimed at anyone who uses, or is intersted in making power training a part of their cycling regime, and Zwift hopes that their own trainer will make it easier for a whole new wave of riders to overcome the barriers to entry that have kept many away.
The HUB trainer promises easy setup – including “easier than IKEA” style assembly. Each unit will be shipped with a Hyperglide cassette compatible with Shimano & SRAM (a Campy cassette is coming in the future), so users will only have to remove the rear wheel from their bike, and then drop it into the HUB unit.
Even spacing issues for different width frames have been solved with a very simple cardboard spacer guide so you’ll know quickly and easily which spacers are correct for yoru bike.
The Zwift HUB is designed to easily connect to the Zwift app on all devices (including Apple TV), and the design is clean, sleek, and reportedly quiet too.
I’m not sure yet how existing brands will compete. Time will tell if production capabilities, and product performance will indeed open the door to a world of new Zwifters, and if a low priced trainer like this is even sustainable from a business perspective. Zwift hopes that by making access to their platform even easier, they’ll be able to attract new users willing to pay the subscription fee for access to the online world of training, rides, and community that Zwift offers.
Stay tuned to PEZ, as we’ll be taking a much closer look in the weeks ahead.
• Buy them online at ZWIFT.com
Here’s the official press release…
Zwift, the global online fitness platform for cyclists, has today launched its first smart trainer, Zwift Hub. Priced at $499/£449/€499, including a pre-installed cassette, getting started on Zwift has never been easier.
“There’s no doubt that Zwift Hub is going to disrupt the market, and we think that’s great news for the customer.” Says Eric Min, Zwift CEO and Co-Founder. “When we started on our hardware journey, it was important that the hardware served the primary purpose of accessing and elevating the core game experience. Getting set up on Zwift hasn’t been an easy process. It can be hard to know exactly what equipment you need to Zwift, and that equipment can be costly. Zwift Hub will help us deliver our mission to make MORE PEOPLE, MORE ACTIVE, MORE OFTEN by making it both easier, and more affordable to get set up on Zwift.”
Zwift Hub promises to unlock the fully immersive experience of riding on Zwift, simulating Zwift’s virtual terrain with uncanny realism, bringing the outdoor cycling experience indoors. Whether performing structured workouts in ERG mode, training with power for the first time, or riding the steepest gradients on Alpe du Zwift, Zwift Hub’s wheel-off design ensures that cyclists enjoy smooth and instantaneous resistance changes to match what they see on the screen, allowing them to focus on the ride.
With its rock-solid design, Zwift Hub delivers a smooth and realistic ride experience and one that won’t upset the neighbors. Even at high speeds, Zwift Hub is whisper quiet.
Unique for the market, Zwift Hub will ship with a cassette pre-installed (8, 9,10,11 or 12-speed) at no extra cost. Customers will be able to specify the number of gears they require at checkout, meaning Zwift Hub will ship with everything needed to take that first ride in Watopia in minutes.
For those using AppleTV, Zwift Hub is able to act as a Bluetooth bridge for your heart rate monitor, freeing up an additional Bluetooth connection that will enable you to pair an additional accessory with Zwift.
Zwift Hub will be available for purchase in the United States, United Kingdom, and the European Union on Zwift.com from October 3rd. To register interest, and for more information, head to [website]
Zwift Hub Pricing:
- USA $499
- UK £449
- EU €499
Zwift is the fitness company born from gaming. We’re dedicated fitness enthusiasts, experienced video game developers, and disruptive thinkers. Play is in our DNA and we know fun fuels results.
Zwift utilizes massively multiplayer online gaming technology to create rich, 3D worlds ripe for exploration. Join thousands of cyclists and runners in immersive playgrounds like London, New York, and Paris as well as our very own Watopia.
Our app connects wirelessly to exercise equipment: bike trainers, treadmills, and more, so your real world effort powers your avatar in the game.
From friendly races to social rides and structured training programs, Zwift unites a diverse community in pursuit of a more fun, immersive and social fitness experience.