If you calibrate the Runn all you are doing is adding a fudge factor to make the speed on Zwift match the treadmill display. The Runn is factory calibrated for speed and will accurately measure the actual belt speed which depending upon which treadmill you have may or may not be the same as the display thinks it is.
I think the issue of liability is very real. If you goto McDonalds and decide to consume 1400 calories each day for breakfast, that is absolutely acceptable, and there is nothing that suggests not to overeat. One person burns themselves on hot coffee with no calories, they sue for a million dollars, and it is a very famous case. Some prominent people for some reason have died on treadmills. It is likely they had a cardiac arrest, and that the use of the treadmill through fitness actually extended their lives, but the treadmill was looked upon as the ‘smoking gun’, the ‘but for’ cause of their ‘early death’. In running, Zwift is not really making money, it seems an add on feature at this point for the computer to control the treadmill. The treadmills of today are really not smart treadmills. As noted, the bike trainers are all now smart trainers, and the bike is not accelerating you, and that’s a valid point.
Life Fintess trendmill have auto incline on Thier machine when doing a scenery run and no one has problem with that.
When the video hits the stairs the trendmill inclines to a %.
Many trendmills like techogym have auto incline with Thier video scenery course why not Zwift.
I think it is potential liability. It cannot be technology. It’s the McDonalds Hot Coffee problem exacerbated post-COVID, risk aversion. The stationary bike and the treadmill are controllers. If Sony and X-Box can deliver force feedback in a game controller, then the technology exists. I am not sure of any cases of injury on a stationary bike. There has been considerable cases of injury on treadmills even if the risks are extremely low. The problem with machines, strict products liability. If I go skiing and jump off a cliff, that is my choice, but if I am on a trainer, and the machine changes the incline, that is ‘not my choice’, it is the machine.
Trendmill (Life Fintess) if you select one of the scenery courses and then it comes up with a window displaying what average incline you want in the run and 0% is a choice and it the default choice.
Just have default and give warring to the end user if selected the auto incline and the machine will auto incline.
It unsafe for a person running at high speed try to see small incline number and adjust it manually on the treadmill then trendmill auto incline.
Personal opinion on this is because it is Life Fitness software running on Life Fitness hardware so they have been able to thoroughly the integration and have full control.
As soon as you start letting 3rd party software control your hardware over open protocols then it is more difficult to ensure that bugs, interfernce etc cannot have an adverse effect and if there was an incident who would be to blame?
I think (hope) it will happen eventually with the correct disclaimers and opt ins etc on both the hardware and within Zwift that if you fall off the back for any reason then its your fault and not theirs.
When Run Social was working - it had incline automatically with life Fintess trendmill machine.
It was great to had auto incline and have speed recorded on the Run Social app.
I miss the days when Run Social was working back in 2018 - 19 with connection to Life Fintess machines.
I looked up Life Fitness and they were sold in 2019. “Brunswick to Sell Life Fitness for $490 Million”. From the report, the revenue was flat. Obviously during COVID, I would guess revenue went up, and now I assume revenue has declined again. When planning features, I would assume the operative decision relates to features generating hardware sales and in software generating new users, with the condition of selecting those features that are relatively inexpensive to implement, with anticipated low downstream liability. I think the reason the treadmill is not integrated so easily into software relates to the myriad of treadmills and varieties on the market, no set interface specifications, and potential liability should the computer speed up the treadmill causing the user to fall. I think Wahoo’s founder capitalized on the blutooth low energy protocol, that is what he said in the podcast, and that one feature was critical to the spectacular revenue growth of the company.