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The Best Cycling Apps

CATEGORIES
August 2, 2021
AUTHOR:
Emily Owen

When you can transfer money to Mexico, make a hair appointment for shiny new highlights, or chat someone up all within the clicks of a few apps, it comes as no surprise that there are plenty of app options for keen cyclists. In fact, it’s slightly bonkers to think that the word “app” wasn’t even used until 2008, when Apple invented the app store. Now it’s a regular part of our vernacular.

We’ve decided to share some of our favourite cycling apps in the hope you find a gem. We’ve left out the obvious (Strava) and in an entirely shameless piece of self-promotion we will just mention that we have an app, available for both Android and Apple.

Pop onto the fettle app to book a service or repair and receive notifications as work progresses. You can also add your bike and each of its components. By linking to your Strava account, the fettle app will tell you exactly when each of your components is worn.

myWindSock

Primarily aimed at time trialists, myWindsock provides reporting on the expected weather conditions of a course. Compatible with Strava, you simply load the URL of the Strava course into the app to check out predicted conditions, and make tactical changes accordingly.  

Whilst it’s generally helpful to know the weather ahead of a ride, for competitive cyclists this can be a real game changer. For example, if the map informs you you’ll face a giant headwind at the point you planned to attack, you may want to change your tactics. The app isn’t available to download on the app store or Google play. Instead, it has to be downloaded straight from the website in a few quick clicks. The instructions for this are here.

Busby


One of the leaders in micro-mobility safety apps, we were delighted to announce our partnership with Busby this week. Developed after their founder, Barry, was involved in a serious cycling accident, Busby was designed to give loved ones peace of mind.

Unlike some rather fancy cycling helmets, Busby requires no additional hardware. All within an app on your phone, Busby will automatically detect if you have an incident or stumble. If you are unresponsive for 30 seconds, your exact location will be sent to your emergency contacts using what3words. Premium features include the ability to call nearby road users for help, or alert nearby drivers that a cyclist is pedalling on ahead.


Fill That Hole

Arguably a tad less glamorous than plotting your victory in a time trial, Fill That Hole is nevertheless a handy little tool! Nobody enjoys suddenly spotting a pot-hole as you slam on your brakes, and pray your spokes will hold up. Take back control of those streets by reporting them through the app! It’s as quick as taking a photo and tagging your location. No more long-winded online council forms to fill out. Just simply take a snap and upload it.

Komoot Maps

Heading off into the wilderness, or a little jaunt around suburban London? Komoot is our favourite navigation app, due to its wealth of ready-made routes and the ease at which you can create your own. It works offline using the GPS from your smartphone, which is much more friendly on battery life (and saves you relying on 4G signal halfway up a Welsh mountain). Plenty of cycle tourers rely on it for this very reason. Unlike a lot of mapping apps, it also offers you voice navigation no matter where you are.

Komoot has maps for every type of cycling, as well as hiking and mountaineering. It also gives you a gauge of the fitness level required for particular routes, which is particularly helpful if you’re heading slightly off the grid. It’s free to download, although certain features are only available if you subscribe for a few pounds a month.




Bike Gear Calculator

Bike Gear Calculator is an easy way to compare different setups for your bike. By taking into account the pedal revolutions per minute, the crank length and tyres, you can weigh up the speed you’d achieve in certain gear ratios.

The app can help improve your riding by knowing the cadence you’ll need to hit in particular gear ratios to achieve the desired speed. For example, if you want to maintain a 33km/h speed (you can change it to miles if you wish) when shifting down to a smaller sprocket, Bike Gear Calculator will tell you the cadence you need to hit.


My Campy

Next up on the list is ‘My Campy’. At its most basic, the app functions as any other cycling computer by tracking distance, speed and time. Although any cyclist can use it, those with Campagnolo components will get the most out of it.

The ‘My Garage’ feature allows you to track the wear on each Campag component, offering maintenance recommendations using this data, to make sure everything is performing in tip top shape. Knowing exactly how many kilometers each wheel, cassette and chain set has done will avoid unnecessarily wearing other components on the bike. We know we said we wouldn’t mention our app again, but our app does this for any bicycle!

If you have a Campag EPS system, the app will also pick up each individual shift for a post-ride analysis. This section of the app also allows the user to programme their front or rear derailleur to shift according to personal preference.

Hopefully in there you’ve found something you didn’t know about before. There are so many cycling apps out there it’s difficult to narrow them down, so why not hop over to the app store and have a little play.

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