I had originally thought that I didn’t need a bike computer because my phone and Apple Watch had all the functionality I needed. However, after a few group rides I am starting to think that turn by turn directions would be nice to have.
Is it “worth” it to get a computer or can I use the Ride with GPS app and pay the $50 a year? If I get a computer is there a yearly fee?
Any suggestions plus I have done zero research, but figured I would ask what others do before going down a rabbit hole.
Here's my $0.02: I have used a spare smartphone (original recipe iPhone SE) as my RWGPS device for years and it works well. I don't see the need to spend $$$$ on a Garmin, but many people like using them. I download the route at home and then I'm good to go with turn by turn directions.
A paid RWGPS account is convenient to have, but you can also can use the ABC RWGPS account or the BikeAAA route library - either way you can get turn by turn directions using a free RWGPS account.
RWGPS seems to prefer the Garmin Edge.
I use a Wahoo Elemnt Bolt which works really well. My first few years I used my phone with the MapMyRide app, then changed to the RideWithGPS app, but using my phone on a mount on the bike wasn't the best.
I then bought the Wahoo, but I still carry my phone in my back pocket in a ziplock bag (so I can make phone calls, and wahoo also has the feature to do live tracking through bluetooth to my phone, so my family can always see where I am).
There is no annual fee for Wahoo. I download ridewithGPS routes to my wahoo (from my free RideWithGPS account) and get the route and turn warnings on my wahoo which works great. Wahoo can be set to automatically connect to whatever accounts you have (Strava, RidewithGPS,MapMyRide, etc.)
Hope this helps.
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