New smart bike Capti promises a full-immersion, ‘game-led’ ride

On the heels of Peloton’s own foray into gamification with Lanebreak, a new California-based company has launched what it says will be a fully immersive video-game-style experience. Its connected bike, Capti Smart Bike, is now on pre-order in the US and set to launch this December.

The Capti Smart Bike features dynamic steering and adaptive resistance, which means riders can opt for the feel of an actual road bike, which shifts and reacts to varying terrain, compared to a static studio bike. The smart bike reads and reacts to users’ rides 50 times per second, dynamically adjusting to each ride, while a large display aims to create an immersive gaming experience. While Connect the Watts has yet to try it, it does sound pretty fun – perhaps not as good as peddling on the open road, but good enough when you’re crunched for time and it’s raining outside. But of course all of this indoor excitement won’t come cheap: The bike retails at an eye-watering $3,495.

Capti also utilizes the Unreal Engine from Epic Games (makers of Fortnite), which is a content platform that delivers 3D video game-level graphics “that leap off the screen and pull users in,” according to the company. The bike features 50 maps, 20,000 feet of elevation, and 350-plus miles of terrain to cover. It’s not just endless miles of track either, but everything from coin-capturing games to snow-capped mountain cycling, with new content added regularly. For those who still crave instructor-led workouts, Capti includes studio cycling classes in addition to heart rate training and HIIT games.

Choose your own adventure on Capti.

This summer, Peloton announced its own in-app video game mode, Lanebreak, which is still in beta but is expected to be ready for widespread launch in 2022. The music-based game, available to Peloton Bike and Bike Plus subscribers, features an on-screen wheel that players control to rack up points by hitting various speed and resistance goals.

Fitness gamification, of course, is nothing new (there is Wii Fit after all, not to mention Nintendo’s Ring Fit Adventure), but other cycling platforms such as Zwift are always tinkering to offer ever-more thrilling ways to keep users engaged. Zwift, which boasts 3.5 million users, is itself a game-like online platform (with monthly subscription fees) that allows riders to create animated avatars and ride in virtual realms (Black Mirror, anyone?). No specialized equipment is needed for Zwift, other than your own bike’s rear tire attached to a digital smart trainer that links to the app.

Capti will retail for $3,495 and is available now for an introductory price of $2,495. The monthly subscription cost is $34 per month. “White glove delivery,” according to the press release, is available across the country.

Photos courtesy of Capti

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