Interesting article. Are we getting to the point that PM technology makes the jump to a commodity?
No. They’re going to get a lot cheaper but still more expensive than a heart rate monitor.
Yeah not get a power meter that cheap that actually works.
Strain gauges are actually super cheap, however getting it to work properly and reliably across all cadences and riding environments, temperature, cobbles etc is the difficult part.
The thread title is intentionally a little click-baitey. Of course no one should expect an actual power meter for $10. The value proposition here is that they can provide the vast majority of the “guts” of one, including app sw, to incorporate into a component maker’s own product for a very inexpensive cost which vastly reduces the engineering challenges and cost to entry. With this approach, you could conceivably see sub $100 options, espcially in large production OEMs.
I just bought one of those $6 power meters, but in reality it was $599.
Strain gauge: $6
Raspberry Pi Zero w: $25
Roll of Duct Tape (For install on bike): $4
Writing software, installation, troubleshooting: 500 hours
I can see you able to get a $35 power meter.
Quote from the article:
CEO of Sensitivus, Rolf Ostergaard, said: “In 2016, we started our quest to democratise power meters and make it affordable for all through our two successful crowdfunding campaigns.
Never trust a company that relies on crowdfunding.
The constituent components of a power meter are very cheap, but not $6 cheap. So if Rolf’s company magically has zero operating expenses, he’s still going to be selling these at a loss.
The hardware gets you in the door often at break even or sometimes a slight loss. The margins are on support, upgrades, licensing and royalties to pay the bills.
Is this the iQ3?
That works if you have one or more of the following:
- An established company with a steady revenue stream from other products, putting out a loss leader to take market share
- A product that relies on a steady supply of consumables, e.g. printers
- A company that is first to market, i.e. SRM in this case, 20 years ago
- A company with a subscription service, e.g. TR, Strava, etc.
- A company that has a companion app with in-app purchases
That Danish company meets none of these.
This is the company that crowdfunded the Zwatt powermeter. Enough said?