While we thought that the leap from the Garmin 800 to 810 was massive, it pales in comparison to the advancement from the Edge 500 to the Edge 510 Bike Computer. Garmin has done away with the 500's button mashing, instead opting for a sophisticated touch screen interface. And while Edge 510 isn't quite at the same level of functionality as the new 810, for the price, we can't imagine a more powerful training computer.
Starting at the screen, Garmin placed a focus on simplifying screen and metrics navigation. The initial start screen prompts you to select the CPU's functionality for your ride, either 'train' or 'race.' To avoid confusion, training mode is presented in Blue, whereas race mode is presented in Red. Additionally, this screen enables you to select the bike profile that you'll be riding -- mountain, road, cyclocross, or even unicycle if you're savvy. Once these selections have been made, you simply touch the ride button, and the screen moves to your race or training page. And of course, this page is customizable for every bike profile in your quiver. So, your ride page will only reflect the data that you deem pertinent to your ride or race. Even more impressive, and a jump away from the button navigation fumbling of the 500, the 510 allows you to simply swipe the touch-screen from page to page. Also, Garmin designed the screen to operate seamlessly with gloved hands in the cold, in the heat, or even in wet weather.
And as long as we're on the subject of new features, you'll should be ecstatic to hear that the 510 is Bluetooth ready. So, while sport device communication is still handled by ANT+ (say, wireless data transfer from HRMs or powermeters), the Bluetooth technology communicates with your smartphone. And to make matters even easier, the 510 is fluent in either Android or iOS operating systems. So, once you're synced up with your phone, and you've downloaded the Garmin Connect Mobile App, the 510 really comes alive. Essentially, the 510 receives data from your smartphone, like live weather and activity upload. This means that you're able to receive real-time weather conditions, forecasts, and alerts while your phone stays protected. And for activity upload, this hastens the data transfer once you've finished your ride. From any location, this feature allows you to wirelessly upload your ride data to your smartphone, which then uploads it to your Garmin Connect profile online. Accordingly, you can view your profile from the Mobile App, almost eliminating the need to access Garmin Connect from a home computer.
Impressed? Believe us, that's just the tip of the iceberg. With the 510's Live Tracking feature, you have the ability to share your activities in real-time through either email or the social media of your choosing. All that you have to do is invite your coach, friends, or family to follow you on Garmin Connect, and then you're able to send email notifications reminding them to follow your real-time activity, stats, data, and location while you're on the bike. You also have the option to share this information via Facebook or Twitter. But, your adoring public aren't the only ones that can navigate your movements. With either the Mobile App or Garmin connect, you have the ability to peruse rides in your area. However, unlike the 810, the 510 doesn't have full map functionality, however, it does GPS for post-ride analysis.
Now for the guts. The 510 sees the return of Garmin's ever-popular, Virtual Partner and Virtual Racer training programs. The 510 does not accept data cards, but it's capable of storing up to 180 hours on its onboard history. It's rechargeable lithium-ion battery has a life that extends to around 17 hours. Garmin also ensured that the CPU is completely waterproof, and it's also compatible with virtually any ANT+ equipped device. So, mating the 510 to an HRM or powermeter will be a painless affair.
The Garmin Edge 510 Bike Computer is available in the color Black and includes a bike mount, USB cable, AC charger, and a user-manual.