Brilliant; when they work

I’ve tried so hard to defend Garmin. But even I can’t keep going.

Like far too many before me, my Garmin 500 is now officially busted. After just 13 months. No impacts. No mistreatment. Just normal riding. Worse still, it’s barely 1 month out of warranty. The device’s USB port is rooted, apparently. And there’s nothing they/I can do about it.

What is wrong with these things? They’re awesome when they work. Infuriatingly crap when they don’t.

I imagine Google are working on something to take them on right now, just as they’ve done for the car GPS market with their incredible (free) Google Maps app. Hopefully it will be more robust than the G500.



6 thoughts on “Brilliant; when they work

  1. A ride not recorded on Garmin, and more so not uploaded to Strava, is a ride not ridden. True or false? I know it is false but can’t help feeling it is true! Garmin failure strikes deep into the psyche, as well as the pocket.

    My Garmin now requires jiggling of the USB connection, what comes next?

  2. Here here!
    Apparently yesterday whilst freewheeling down a decent size hill I was spinning at 256rpm so the cadence read out was saying. Let me add the fact that I wasn’t pedalling at all? This followed by the fact that it took nearly 5 mins to find the satellites on the same ride, as well as my heart rate recently jumping from 150 to over 240 bpm on a moderate climb, but yet I am still here so it must be the Gramin 500! Brilliant most of the time, crap the rest!

  3. They are hopeless, yet the best units available – I do so wish Steve Jobs was a cyclist. We’d have good value bike computers and power meters

  4. Its strange because I have always found my Garmin to be totally bullet proof. I had an issue with an old 310 (or something) and Garmin simply replaced it with a reconditioned one. I just upgraded to a 500 to accomodate a power meter so I guess I will wait and see.

    @Anthony Lewis: cadence of 256 could be the magnet on the crank is wiggling in front of the pickup – it will count one rev every time it passes and doesn’t know if the crank has fully rotated. High HR – “jersey flap” can result in elevated readings. I see this in dry conditions, wearing a looser jersey than normal and early in the ride where I haven’t started to sweat (which improves the pickup signal from the heart).

    I don’t work for Garmin but love the product because they always just work (for me anyway)

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