Looking for a cycling computer? There’s an app for that. Apple recently filed with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office for various concepts of a newly-advanced Smart Bicycle System. Reportedly in development, the app will use the iPhone’s (or iPod iTouch) accelerometer and gyroscope to measure speed, distance, time, altitude, elevation, incline, decline, heart rate, temperature, weather, wind speed and other factors relevant to cycling. A few other add-ons such as a heart rate monitor strap and sensors to place on the wheel will likely be required to take full advantage of the app.
Other news outlets are reporting the iPhone and app that pro cyclists could adopt and even used to communicate while racing in a stage. Most teams already have cycling computers that read all the same settings and report back to the team’s manager in the team car. Garmin-Transitions Slipstream, for example, has Garmin as a sponsor and part of the GPS manufacturer’s commitment is in supply of cycle computers and other equipment. It is possible some teams will opt for the iPhone app, and certainly will be open to a sponsorship. Several new teams have been announced and it wouldn’t be all too surprising to see an Apple team form in the next year or so.
Whether the app is used by competitive cyclists, expect to see plenty of hipsters on track bikes with their iPhones mounted to the handlebars. We just hope they refrain from text and ride practices.