Last year I got what most cyclists would deem their dream job; getting paid to ride their bike. No, I’m not a Pro-cyclist, instead I’ve been working as a ride leader for holiday company VivaVelo. As a ride leader this means riding on unknown roads, while giving the appearance of knowing exactly where you are and where you’re going next. Missing a cafe stop is not an option. So it goes without saying that a GPS computer is a must. But what are the options? I came across the Teasi One3 recently and thought I’d give it a try.
The GPS bike computer market is dominated by two players at the moment, Garmin and Wahoo. Below them are brands like Mio, Sigma and Bryton and new manufacturers are starting to appear as well like Hammerhead and Xplova. I must admit that I hadn’t ever heard of Teasi before. I’m normally a little wary of unknown brands, but it was so much cheaper than the competition! After a little googling however I was convinced Teasi was worth a closer look, so pressed the button.
The Teasi One comes in three varities; the One3, One3 eXtend and the Volt. The Volt is an eBike GPS, so it can give you information on the state of your motor, as well as all the other GPS ‘stuff’. The One3 and One3 eXtend share the same core specifications except that the eXtend has an electronic compass and eight rather than four GB of flash memory.
I’ll list all the technical details, for those of you that like that sort of thing. It has a 664MHz SiRF Atlas V processor, running Microsoft Windows CE .Net 6.0 Core. There is 128MB of DDR2 RAM with eight or four GB of flash memory, depending on model. Memory can be extended up to 32GB via a microSD card. There is a 8.8cm transflective touch display, which has 480×800 pixel resolution. The built-in rechargeable Li-Polymer 2.650mAh battery has a claimed run-time of up to twelve hours. Finally the splash-proof (IPX5) housing measures in at 11.14×6.38×2.1 centimetres and weighs 139 grammes.
The Teasi One3 eschews a lot of the fancy social media ‘stuff’ that a lot of GPS have nowadays. That’s fine by me as I’m not that bothered about being able to instantly upload to Strava. Also I have managed to get by without knowing where my friends are and I can go a few hours without notifications.
So what do I want from a GPS? My main demand is rock solid navigation. As a ride leader, I want to know exactly where I am and whats coming up. I’ve used a mixture of GPS devices that have either breadcrumb trail, or full colour, turn-by-turn navigation; sometimes I use both at the same time.
I definitely prefer full colour maps, they’re easier to read. Having a scrolling full colour map helps me warn clients of complicated or dangerous roads ahead. It’s also easier navigating complicated urban centres if you can see surrounding roads and their names. Also being able to zoom out and take a look at the general area can help when trying to re-route.
I also want to be able to set the screen out how I want. While ride leading this usually means being able to tell how far the next feed is, how far to the finish, or what speed we need to do to get to Paris before the cut-off! I also want it to not lose lock as I enter Versailles and then take ages to restart (that was embarrassing!).
Battery life has to be good enough for at least eight hours continuous operation. I’d also like a screen that’s bright enough to be seen and a mount that stays put. Off the bike I’d like to be able to create my own routes and import/export files from others. I also want to be able to connect to other sensors, such as HRM, cadence or power.
The Teasi One3 seems to offer all this in a package that is a lot lighter on the wallet than other GPS, so I’ll be interested to see how it performs. I can’t see myself taking it racing, it’s a little too large and I hardly look at my computer when racing. It would be a waste of all that tech and it be more likely to get damaged in a crash. I’ll take it along on some of my upcoming ‘adventures’ and will let you know how we get on.
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