Garmin Edge 810 GPS Cycle Computer Review
Roadcycling.com tests the Garmin Edge 810 GPS-enabled cycle computer, which is the long-awaited successor to Garmin’s previous flagship model.
The Garmin Edge 810 is the newest bike computer from the GPS company. At a listed price of US$499 it is their most expensive model, but it has got some distinct features that separate it from the rest of the Garmin bike computer line.
On earlier Garmin Edge bike computer models, to navigate between the many different screens you pushed a button or toggle. With the Edge 810 swiping to the side changes the screen much like the way you might with your smartphone. Even with a full-fingered glove I was still able to swipe to change the screen. The screen is touch sensitive and this is how you can change the layout of the Edge 810 – no more scrolling through different menus using a button. The touch screen requires more force than what you use on your smartphone – which takes some getting used to. A slight touch to my Sony mobile phone activates an app, but a firmer touch is required to navigate the Edge 810. To be fair, I can see the need for a harder tap than a smartphone to prevent accidental activation of a feature when you’re cruising along at 20 miles per hour – it just bears pointing out. This touchscreen feature is also an element of the cheaper 500, 510, and 800 models.
My favorite function is the ability to pair the Edge 810 with either an iPhone or an Android-powered smartphone to utilize the Garmin Connect app. In my case, I use a Sony Xperia. I downloaded the Garmin Connect app and connected my phone to the Edge 810 via Bluetooth. The Garmin Connect app features downloading your ride, a very handy weather alert warning, and LiveTrack which I’ll discuss later.
The Edge 810 can also pair with any ANT+ device, so if you have a power meter that transmits using that frequency you can display your watts on the Edge 810 screen.
The Edge 810 is rich with maps. As someone who lives in a city where the planners laughed at the thought of designing streets on a grid and instead paved meandering cow paths, this is a great feature. The mapping isn’t just dots that you have to try and follow, but an actual GPS that directs you to the correct route. Using the Garmin Connect app you can search for rides and then download them onto the 810. You no longer have the excuse of not knowing any interesting routes. When the map feature is accessed you need to do a lot of pinching of the screen to enlarge the portion of the map that you’re in. It seems kind of unnecessary to have to zoom in repeatedly before zeroing in on your location. It should be preset to a smaller distance radius around the rider.
Another interesting feature of the Garmin Connect is LiveTrack. This allows people to follow your ride live via Facebook, Twitter, or by an email invitation. Using your smartphone’s GPS and the downloaded Garmin app, the Edge 810 transmits your location. The link takes the