OK Oakley, “Start a Ride”

I doubt I’ll be changing my Oakley’s for these, but still … an interesting concept.  Instead of forcing something into your line of sight these are designed as a hearable … you speak and get feedback without having to change your view.  In theory this is a safer way to roll .. though interesting the focus of the demo was running vs cycling.  I realize it was a single event and inside on a treadmill, but the sports are quite different and have different needs to consider.

As you can see from the screenshots of the app it’s pretty basic stuff and not something you’d likely want to really be dealing with directly.  Instead I hope there’s more integration with the data and other sources.  In a more ideal method, the glasses would be an extension of data already being collected from your Garmin.  Given the BLE vs ANT+ challenge that’s perhaps unlikely via Garmin.  I suppose if this takes off we might see some additional variants but thinking that’s probably a bit slim.  The best use case I can really think of for hearing things like this would be for splits and in particular Strava Live segment progress.  Secondarily perhaps would be turn prompts if you were riding a mapped course…

As a final challenge … while you can apparently remove the ear pieces, I would be concerned that you might actually create a hearing challenge while riding.  When running you don’t generally need to take in as many details as you do on a bike – at least that’s always been my experience.  I never use earphones when riding and only listen to music when inside on the trainer … even running I tend to just enjoy the outdoors as much as possible. I didn’t catch any details on how these might augment the surroundings as some new earphones are doing so you can hear what’s happening as well as the prompts or music …

More to come I’m sure as these are released in a few weeks.

Via (including all images) Lance Ulanoff at Mashable.

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