I started riding with a friend today and lost him when he stopped to turn his fan on (it was just before a turn and he took the other one). Despite various texts, we couldn’t find each other again for the whole ride. Would there be scope for a “take me to my friend” button on a friend’s profile when you’re riding? Would also be useful to find a friend who starts riding when you’re mid session and you’d like to join up.
In order to support segments and virtual rides at real places (e.g. Richmond course), Zwift is using real GPS coordinates and these are saved to the .FIT file that is generated for every ride. When this is uploaded to Strava, etc. you can see where you rode and have segments because they are real GPS coordinates even though it was a virtual ride.
That being said, having a “ride with friend” while your ride is already in progress would mean you would magically jump from one location to another and this would show up in the GPS log as a straight line going from one point to another. This would cause all of your metrics (e.g. avg. speed, distance, etc.) to be incorrect.
Now, maybe one day Zwift could implement the “ride” or “jump” to friend feature but it would mean that you would end your current ride and then you would start an entirely new ride at the new location.
I guess another option, perhaps less desirable to most people, is if Zwift allowed you to just ride but it’s not recording your data for the purpose of generating a .FIT file of your ride. If this were the case, then you could jump around the course as much as you’d like but would also not be allowed to participate in any KOM/jersey competitions.
My guess is that Zwift may never implement this because once we start talking about group rides, races, etc. having the ability to “jump” around is unfair and unrealistic.
I think its perfectly reasonable to assume that if someone wants to ride with a friend and the consequences are ending the current ride and starting over upon the hookup, that would be acceptable. certainly a simple prompt that alerts the rider that their “jump” though space would result in a new start from mile 0 would be a simple thing to do…and avoid pissing off the “jumpee”. The point is, Zwift is a cycling social media game, and limiting the social aspect of the experience is a flaw. I don;t know what the priorites are at Zwift, but until they fix the social part there is no incentive for me to move to Zwift (except as a solo experience) when I can ride with friends on Perfpro or Trainer road companion. But I really want to move to Zwift with my fiends because the environment is cool. So I really hope the Zwifters will at least make it easier to start a ride with known friends you are following.
I don’t think wanting to ride with people you know is unreasonable, we do it all the time. Rarely do riders go out alone except when they have to. Riding together is a part of the cycling experience. We all benefit from being in the group from the standpoint of effort and of camaraderie.
The other thing that is bothersome is that you can’t even locate people unless you have the ZML, which is preposterous. How is it that an app you pay for has so little in terms of actual features?
Case in point? Unless I download or follow third-party advice and modify files I’m stuck with the course selection of the day imposed by Zwift. I rest my case.