MicroTech insole power meter update

There were several good questions in the comments to the “Someone’s listening” post in regards to the MicroSport insole power meter, and I had a few of my own.  I shot of an email this am and bingo, detailed answers didn’t take long.  So far I’m impressed with their responsiveness.

Here’s the Q & A.  

–  what is your anticipated ship date?

We are advertising “early 2007”.  I would guess that we may be ready by March.  We still have lots of development, testing and certification to do. While we know that people want this product NOW, we don’t want to release a
sub-standard product.

–  I don’t see any speed pickups as part of the hardware, how is speed/distance measured?

The base unit comes with a wired velocity sensor (like most cycling computers).  We are working on a wireless velocity sensor too for a future option.

–  Are additional 3rd party ANT devices required for full functionality?

As a cycling computer and power meter, there is no need for any additional ANT devices.  We will support other ANT devices as we build up our product portfolio including:

– ANT sport watches
– ANT wireless velocity and cadence sensors
– ANT Heart Rate Straps
– ANT wireless computer dongles

–  My primary use is for mountain biking – do you think the algorithms will work for this case? 

We believe that the product will work for MTB but we have not done any testing with MTB yet.  It has all been road bike. 

–  Is cadence measured via crank sensors or virtually (2 dead spots/revolution)?  I can see a situation where descending on an MTB would throw the unit into chaos if cadence is virtual.

Cadence is measured “virtually” through the shoe computer.  It is different that the “virtual” cadence from Shimano and “virtual cadence” from PowerTap. It does rely on the force curve measurements but is not implied from velocity and gear (like Shimano).  It is also more reliable than the torque based measurements from PowerTap that had reliability issues at low and high

–  Can ride files be downloaded from the CPU to a computer?

We will be offering a download kit as a separate option.  We will bundle the Cycling Peaks software for download and analysis.  The interface to REVOLUTION will be wireless from your computer so you can just park your bike and the computer will grab the data!  The bundle will include the wireless dongle (it looks like USB memory stick)

–  What is the max file size?  Record interval?

This is still in development.  The max file size will probably be 1Mbit.  We will have multiple recording intervals from 1.6s to 15s.  At the highest sampling rate of 1.6s, you will be able to store approx 3-4hr of ride data.