Zwift hardware plans are on pause

@Wes Salmon is leaving Zwift? Why?


The PR bods have clearly tried to dress up these significant staffing changes within the news about sacking off hardware, as though it’s all the same thing. Both are noteworthy in their own right.

Crap for all affected - whichever underlying reason applies - but Wes leaving feels like a big deal. He’s not just been the lead developer, he’s been the face of the company from the technical side (literally, via the World of Zwift videos). It’s not right to speculate on what’s happened, but it doesn’t take a genius to think of a few strong possibilities.


Nobody else can figure out what is going on in there?


Can we not speculate? I have no idea honestly - seems crazy to get rid of one of your main guys, who has been with the company for a good few years.

This was basically the Powerwatts bike, also known as Adjustabike when it was used by the Athlete Lab studios in London, Sydney and Singapore. The used them with old Computrainers.

The trainer bikes were built up with 105 10 speed running gear from a heap of low spec Giant road bikes and then the unused frames were sold off.

I feel bad for staff who are moving on. Best wishes to those I never got to know, and also to Wes Salmon.

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Very useful to read about William Staub who invented the home treadmill, "By the mid-1980s the company he formed to manufacture them, Aerobics Inc., was selling 2,000 treadmills a year to a nation increasingly eager to work up a sweat in the rec room. By the mid-90s, sales reached 35,000 a year.” William Staub lived until 96 and prided himself on living in the same small NJ town for 70 years. Apparently, the real money was in medicine, the Bruce Protocol, and cardiac stress testing. It is hard to underestimate Medicare as a ‘subscription model’. Take HSA plans, you can pay for treatments and medications on the tax deductible plan except . . . exercise equipment, it is simply not covered.

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I have been using my old Trek 7.5 Fx, works fine, although the shifting is sometimes off. The bike is indestructible. I bought one used from a Google guy in Menlo Park years ago, and sometimes I keep it under the crawl space of the house in the winter. My 14 year old son biked with me two days ago and nearly beat me on the Highway 9 climb, and I was on Carbon Trek Emonda. I realized, it is not the bike, it is my declining musculature, my engine is slowly dying, losing compression. I think it is very hard to beat Aluminum for longevity, and the TacX Neo trainer has road feel, it is a blast. With the cratering of Pelaton’s stock price, I think we are seeing massive hardware over supply post COVID. Launching new hardware is going to be brutal moving forward in an already over crowded market. Zwift needs to get back to software basics, think Nintendo, that is where the money is going to be, branding, merchandise, etc. Perhaps they could have a game mode where you are chased by a dog, or there is a cat, something like that, you have to grow the user base beyond road bikers interested in constant training, and likely lower the price to $9.99 a month, or a comparable to Apple Arcade or the user base will plateau. It may be the case, grow or die, in an area where the number of users determine enterprise value, not necessarily hardware or new features.

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Companies that make these business decisions usually go bankrupt or are acquired and disappear. zwift disappears and wahoo survives.

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Garmin will buy TR and Zwift

Perhaps they could have a game mode where you are chased by a dog…

LOL literally nobody wants that. Dogs and cavemen in pickup trucks are the reason I don’t really ride outside anymore.

Actually I shouldn’t have said that, it’s offensive to cavemen.


So, anybody hear about the Zwift layoffs and kibosh of the Zwift Bike?

Part of the article said that Zwift was going to put more effort into more frequent and better updates to the game.

I would totally be up for paying a subscription for running in exchange for some more events like TOW etc. (I know, there definitely seems to be less runners out there to fill events, but one can hope).

Another thing that maybe they should focus on is convincing some of these companies with smart treadmills and spin bikes to integrate with Zwift. For example my Bowflex T10 boasted that it integrates with Zwift…me thinking that meant it displayed on the screen…nope, just transmits speed. Yeah, I bought it anyway hoping one day they’d open access to the screen. But man, there’s a whole slew of ifit, bowflex, nordiktrac techy stuff they could work together with. (Peloton is probably a non-starter)

Anyway, I’m just rambling and was trying to drum up some conversation in the running forum.

What’s your thoughts?

Already a thread about the layoffs this: Zwift hardware plans are on pause

Okay… But is it in the running forum?? No wonder there’s not much chatter in here. :expressionless:

Ah, sorry, didn’t see that this was aimed at runners. My bad.

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Sorry to be snappish, just realized it probably pops up in a ‘new topic’ feed somewhere. Yeah, was just trying to get some convo going on here between runners… So quiet in here. I am reading the thread you linked though! Thank you!

I am, thanks for noticing. :kissing_heart:

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Sorry. I was talking to Mr. Buzzkill. I liked what you wrote. I’d pay for a running subscription too if they added levels.


Yep, me too. Plus the treadmill support for auto incline and speed (yes there are more topics about those - for good reason).

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Wow. Had to Google that - very interesting stuff:\

They even had rear wheels for use with wheel-on type trainers which fits with a budget setup.

…aaaaaand there it is. CompuTrainer is a case study in hubris: they failed to adapt to market-demand and did themselves in. interesting to think of “the timeline that didn’t happen.”

While I’d love to see a “Zwift button” on every treadmill (much like the “Netflix” button on every smart TV remote) I don’t believe that will ever happen. Bowflex/Echelon/Octane Fitness all have their own subscription based fitness services they want to sell. They’re even resistant to adding standard ANT+FEC and BLE-FTMS protocols because that would open their equipment up to use with competitor apps.