Hammerhead Karoo 2 – Ditch Your Garmin Edge For Christmas?
If you’re looking to upgrade your Karoo 1, or if you are actively looking to get away from Garmin (Edge), or if you are looking for a new, sweet-looking bike computer then the Hammerhead Karoo 2 is probably going to be a good choice for you this Christmas. It’s been a hard year…you probably deserve a Karoo 2.
And if you get one as a present to yourself, then you almost certainly won’t be disappointed. However, there’s probably not that many people who fall into my categories, above. A nice number of people nevertheless, let’s say a nice round 5-figure range like 10,000+ sounds sensible. But for Lance Armstrong’s investment in Hammerhead to pay off there needs to be a step-change in the adoption of all-things-Karoo. That step change needs to take Karoo 2 to the more stratospheric levels of Wahoo, so we’re now talking BIG 5-figure numbers or even selling 100,000+ units. Forget the accuracy of those ‘illustrative’ numbers just take the point that there needs to be a seismic change.
Practice What You Preach – Will I Ditch My Garmin?
First off, I can’t see myself ever ditching my top-end Garmin tri watch (Garmin FR 945), whichever that might be at any given time over the next few years, I’m a Garmin realist and not a Garmin-hater; although I’m perfectly happy to seriously use some of the competitors’ products for extended periods (Polar Vantage). But when it comes to BIKE COMPUTERS then I have already ditched my Garmin. There’s very little wrong with the Edge 530/830/Edge 1030 Plus range, I’d just rather keep it reliably simple with a Wahoo Element Bolt.
Nevertheless, I’ve used the Karoo (v1) probably more than most other reviewers over the last few years as I got into the Karoo on the crest of the wave of its continued improvement rather than experiencing some of the trials and tribulations of the initial launch way-back-when. So I’ve always been impressed with the Karoo and I’ve always been impressed with the continual addition of new features. The Karoo 2 has the same base product features as Karoo 1 but in a smaller, equally-as-pretty shell. Once the Karoo 2 production units start flowing, I’m hoping for a great experience for the review. Personally, I’m not so bothered that there will now be smartphone notification display nor that I can get audible alerts when navigating…I don’t like smartphone notifications and I tend to know where I’m going…that’s me, it’s just that I’m never getting there quite as fast as I’d like to 😉
I suppose I might have used Karoo 1 a little more if it were smaller, and if it also supported native dropbox upload I would definitely have used it in a flash. But, again, that’s just ME and the idiosyncrasies of how I do things. Let’s move on to you and those 10 reasons to ditch your Garmin. It’s an interesting list because there probably isn’t a single feature which will wow you. Instead, what will wow you will be the usability and aesthetics. Surprisingly that doesn’t always shift product, surprisingly it’s that pesky 100 features long feature-list that tends to shift product off the shelves. You know, those 100 features that made you buy your last Garmin? Remember those? Yep, there were probably only about 10 of them that were important in reality. But I reckon, that 90% of you will have all your key features covered in the Hammerhead Karoo 2.
Plus, let’s face it, it really is not cool to have a Garmin; it’s a bit boring, really. You’re a person, not another number, right? If/when you get one you could join that exclusive club that only me and the ‘random lady on top of Box Hill‘ I met last year are members of. ie the only people I’ve seen using the Karoo are me and her. I’ve seen LOTS of Wahoo users…only one other Karoo user – actually I think it was 2 others, but that doesn’t make quite as good an impact when writing)!
10 Reasons to ditch your Garmin
- Sweetness Personified – it’s cool-looking with a sexy and intuitive interface
- The touchscreen is awesome
- It’s all about the device – the online dashboard is minimal and there’s no pesky applet yet ( for notifications)
- It’s super-connected in all the right places, from Di2 to Varia sensors to STRAVA & RwGPS platforms
- There are some cleverly designed data fields, they look cool and work well. Sometimes they can be a little too much. But you can get simple numbers too.
- A great routing & mapping experience, not perfect, but great nevertheless
- Structured workout support is there for you serious types and yes there is also…
- Trainer control with Fe-C
- Not forgetting those of you who like STRAVA, you will love the best ever strava live segment experience.
Oh, that’s only 9. Hammerhead is offering existing Karoo users a $120 credit towards a new Karoo 2 purchase, making it a rather sweet $279. Wouldn’t it be cool if Hammerhead offered you a ‘token’ $50 for your old Garmin? That would be reason number 10.