Review: Beeline Velo 2
Review: Beeline Velo 2
Beeline Velo 2 £99.99
The Beeline Velo 2 is a cycling navigation device that can be mounted on your bike’s handlebar or stem and used in conjunction with a free smartphone app. It uses the phone’s GPS and internet connection to provide verbal and visual navigational prompts as you ride, rather than displaying a map with an overlaid route. The app is available for both Android and iOS phones, and can be used to configure the device and connect it to Strava (if you have an account).
Route planning with the Beeline app is simple: just tap a start/destination on the map and the device will calculate the route for you. You can add multiple waypoints and save your routes for later, or import GPX files. If you’ve connected the app to Strava, it will also suggest routes that have been made public by other users in your area. The app uses Google Maps for route planning, which provides a lot of detailed information about facilities and amenities along the way. However, it does not support Ordnance Survey maps.
When planning a route, you can choose from three modes: fast, balanced, or quiet. These modes take into account user feedback and various factors such as cycling infrastructure and road type. However, the device does not allow you to view the elevation profile of a planned route, and it may sometimes take you on a more strenuous route than you might prefer. It is primarily designed for use on roads and cycle paths, but it does have a compass mode that can be used for off-road riding, pointing you in the direction of pre-planned waypoints.
The Beeline’s navigational interface is straightforward and easy to follow, with a small segment of the map displayed and your route clearly marked. It uses audio cues to let you know when to turn, but these may not always be sufficient at complex junctions. Rerouting is fast and effective when you have an internet connection. One of the benefits of the Beeline is that it allows you to keep your phone out of harm’s way and protected from the elements.
For those using a smartphone to navigate, this is an excellent option as it allows you to conserve phone power and keep the phone safe in your pocket. The navigational interface is simple and easy to use, without distracting you from your ride. It’s a great option for those not needing the bells and whistles of a full-blown GPS unit. Off-road riders might need to look elsewhere.
Garmin Edge 130 Plus £169.99
The cheapest Garmin cycling-specific device that supports route creation, navigation and performance tracking. Does not require a phone app to operate.
Lezyne Macro GPS RRP £95
A semi-independent GPS computer that uses your phone for advanced features like turn-by-turn navigation, real-time tracking, and Strava Live Segments.
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