World's first Bluetooth low energy bike speed and cadence monitor is released

June 18, 2012 // By Paul Buckley
Specialist smartphone fitness company, Wahoo Fitness, is launching the world's first Bluetooth low energy bike speed and cadence monitor - the Wahoo Blue SC - that employs a Nordic Semiconductor's µBlue nRF8001 Connectivity chip that tracks a bike's lifetime mileage.

The bike sensor offers a lifetime bike mileage tracking feature and will work with Wahoo's existing Bluetooth low energy heart-rate belt and any iPhone 4S or latest generation iPad.

The product announcement follows Wahoo Fitness launching the world's first commercially-available Bluetooth low energy heart-rate belt in January 2012.

The Wahoo Blue SC is immediately compatible - using a Wahoo fitness app - with the iPhone 4S and newest (third) generation iPad that both support Bluetooth v4.0 wireless technology that includes Bluetooth low energy as a hallmark feature. The Wahoo app can also take advantage of many of the inherent features of the iPhone 4S and iPad including GPS mapping to track routes, for example, and the ability to automatically upload recorded bike data to a user's preferred training website.

The majority of new smartphones and tablets will support Bluetooth v4.0- the latest specification version of the wireless technology. Wahoo is also making it iOS API (application programming interface) available to all interested app developers and says it plans to develop similar APIs for other operating systems and product platforms.

The Wahoo Blue SC comprises three parts: a main sensor unit that mounts on a bike's frame between the pedal and rear wheel, a crank magnet that tracks cadence each time it passes this sensor, and a rear wheel spoke magnet that tracks speed and distance each time it passes the sensor (each wheel rotation corresponding to a distance travelled equal to the circumference of the bike's tire within a given time from which the bike's speed can also be calculated).

In operation, the Nordic nRF8001's class-leading ULP performance enables the Wahoo Blue SC speed and cadence monitor to run for up to 18 months from a regular 3V CR2032 coin cell battery under typical usage (three rides a week) conditions.

"With the totally unique lifetime mileage feature - or bike odometer - we are giving users the option to transform