Problems with Bkool

Discussion in 'Virtual Training: Bkool, Zwift, CycleOps & others' started by bridgy, 20 Feb 2018.

  1. Brusgaard

    Brusgaard Über Guru

    Skive, Denmark
    Well, I started at 82, now 83 and should probably set it to 85 to match my real weight these days. But don’t want to get too much of an advantage going downhill. :tongue:
    bridgy likes this.
  2. AAAC 76C

    AAAC 76C Large Member

    Dead stops!
  3. AAAC 76C

    AAAC 76C Large Member

    Ability to see more riders in the table on the left.
    Automatically smooth out gradient transitions when a session is created.
    Like Geoffs point on the real weather, default should be off.
    Bring back zooming in the map/satellite view
    Fix the velodrome look behind function so it rotates the other way so you don't spend half of the view transition looking through the boards into darkness.
    Ability to add race numbers to kits so you can easily see which avatar is yours when competing as a team
    There are no 'ethnic' Avatars
    Fix the Velodrome overhead (map) view to go back to what it was like over a year ago before the new GUI
    Go back to the old GUI, it was far easier to understand and look through (intuitive would be a good word there)
    JJRobinson likes this.
  4. gbrown

    gbrown Geoff on Bkool

    South Somerset
    Another little glitch, when you use the space bar to look back while spectating, it switches from the rider you are viewing to the one behind, looks back from them then stays with that rider! Does it every time I use look back!
  5. berty bassett

    berty bassett Guru

    Not knowing if it’s just me not being fit or if it’s a real problem
    Going downhill in bkool no matter what I do I can’t keep speed up and I am over penalised even if I try drafting
    This doesn’t happen in zwift
    I know a chubby will go faster downhill that is basic science but if I tuck in behind then I should get some benefit
    bobinski and Whorty like this.
  6. CXRAndy

    CXRAndy Veteran

    berty bassett and Whorty like this.
  7. theboxers

    theboxers TheBoxers on Cycle Sim sw

    OTC (on the couch)
    What trainer are you using? I have no issues going downhill. Once I get blue speed numbers I can rarely improve on them.
  8. Whorty

    Whorty WADA conclude I don't need a TUE!

    SW Wiltshire
    I'm fine downhill on the Pro, but on the Kickr even if I try to pedal I lose speed against other riders.

    Definitely even out the trainers, especially going into inclines. Even small 1-2% rises and Pro users leave me for dead. I can go from riding and overtaking a Pro rider at 250 watts on the flat, to hitting an incline (small or large) and even if I raise my watts to 300+ the Pro rider will just take off and be a minute up the road. This I think is where most of the advantage the Classic/Pro has over other machines.

    Seems my Kickr doesn't take any momentum into the hill but the Pro's keep it going much much longer. On the longer drags though, so 1km of 1-2%, I can normally catch these slower riders back up and better them again on the flat. Then, hit the next incline and they catch me and shoot past me.
  9. gbrown

    gbrown Geoff on Bkool

    South Somerset
    Bkool actually boast in their Marketing that their trainers are the only ones that simulate inertia!

    As far as I can see, there is nothing in the hardware to simulate inertia, so it seems it must be in their software, they effectively engineer in an advantage for their own trainers, which is bonkers!

    You don't encourage people with other brand trainers to pay your software subscriptions by disadvantaging them and they won't pay hundreds for your hardware instead, they will just give their subs to Zwift or someone else where they can compete! And if you only have bkool trainer users paying subs, you have less to invest in your software and hence fall behind your competition and lose them as well!

    Honestly, how can it be sensible to deliberately engineer a difference between trainers and then boast about it? :banghead:

    Aleman, CXRAndy and Whorty like this.
  10. gbrown

    gbrown Geoff on Bkool

    South Somerset
    When spectating and riding with a rider who crosses the line, why does it switch to the last rider, it would make far more sense to switch to the second rider, who is more likely to be just behind!
  11. doncasterone

    doncasterone New Member

    newbie so pls excuse if previously mentioend

    in full screen video view would like a sml window just indicating the average speed only
    would like to take advantage of the lovely view but ride to a average speed without toggling views on and off

    cheers Dave
  12. bobinski

    bobinski Guru

    Tulse Hill
    That has always been my suspicion and if correct its the cynicism behind that decision that really Fecks me off.
  13. OP

    bridgy Guru

    The difference is definitely mostly the software. Zwift proves this.
    Whorty likes this.
  14. Del C

    Del C Senior Member

    Near term actions they could take to restore confidence (0 - 3 months):

    1. Publish via the Bkool website and their Facebook page dates and times for maintenance windows, so that you don't try to schedule a ride or use the Sim and only then find out they are carrying out 'scheduled' maintenance work

    2. Ensure enough computing platform resource so that league rides are recorded and show up in individual stage and overall times within 1 hour. Slow updates are a huge disincentive to participation in leagues

    3. Generally improve communication to Bkool users. The recent problems with platform outages, stability and updates were pretty much ignored, with invites still sent out for Winter Cup stages, even when the Sim was in trouble and leagues weren't updating. I know this is tough, but accepting you have a problem and then showing a clear plan to fix it will always buy you respect and time. Doing the opposite achieves the opposite.

    Mid term actions (0 - 6 months)

    1. Ensure that all rides in the Scheduled rides section have the delete option. I still have a bunch of LeJoG rides that I cannot delete, even after the recent website update. This is just poor design and validation.

    2. Provide a capability in the Scheduled rides section on the website, so that you can see and amend the rides and order they will appear in the Sim. At the moment, my Sim league rides include routes I have already ridden, do not want to ride again and I cannot get them out of the Sim. This is linked to the point above.

    Longer term actions (6 - 12 months)

    1. Significantly improve the search facility for rides on the website. At the moment, key word searches are just poor and inconsistent. For example, if I'm looking for rides in Mallorca, then I can get different results by using Mallorca, Majorca and Illes Ballears. Some results may appear without any of these words, but only if you know of the specific route you want by name, eg Sa Calobra. This needs a refresh of the database and the way rides are catalogued, but it would provide a huge improvement in user access and friendliness

    2. Review video performance and server capacity to try and eliminate video freezing. This is a massive irritant and detracts hugely from user experience.

    3. Review the way that 3D rides are encoded. Many of the rides I had submitted automatically from Strava in the past were rejected as having inaccurate and excessive gradients, although this was not the case. Such a review should address and fix the underlying issue, and provide clear guidance to the users on guidelines and any constraints that apply to the creation of 3D routes. My auto forwarding from Strava is now disabled and I don't bother asking for routes to be 3D encoded.

    Other points of discussion.

    1. The inertia debate is interesting. I agree that this is likely a software 'issue'. However, it seems a bit tough to me to suggest they disable this, as they clearly are trying to make the experience as close as they can to riding on the road. On the road, if you hit the foot of a 5% slope after descending a 10% slope, you're clearly going to carry more forward momentum into the start of the climb, than if you just clipped in at the door of the climb. Maybe what is needed is a revalidation that the software algorithms are accurately managing this and more closely reflecting inertia, and not overly rewarding Bkool turbos versus other turbos. If this is achieved, then the onus moves more to other vendors to improve the way they handle this issue. In fact, I'd probably extend the review so that the 'fairy dust' issue is at worst properly understood and at best improved to better represent actual road riding experience.

    2. I'd encourage them to think about either setting up a support forum, or looking to read and post on a limited number of external forums such as Cyclechat, to ensure that user problems are identified, discussed and resolved more quickly. This could be tough at the start, especially during poor service periods, but again I'd say having an improvement plan and improved communication would be a huge set forward, and would also help to damp down any potential online abuse.

    3. I'd say to them that the points above are to address clear issue affecting user enjoyment and that fixing these would massively enhance the user experience. When Bkool works properly its very good and has a range of capability beyond all of its competitors. Why let that suffer through failing toy address the issues above?
    Whorty and gbrown like this.
  15. berty bassett

    berty bassett Guru

    your now a skinny mini !
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