Phones stopped being just phones a long time ago, and while mine is only used for Candy Crush and taking selfies with my dogs, there are also some mountain bike-specific apps out there that seem interesting. One of those is ShockTune, a no-charge app that employs your phone's accelerometer to measure the forces acting on the bike, thereby giving you an idea of how well (or not) your fork or shock is performing
. Another app from the same company that data dorks might be into is MTB Hangtime
that, as the name suggests, tells you things like how long you've been in the air. And more air is more better, of course. How Does MTB Hangtime Work?
Much like ShockTune, the MTB Hangtime app uses your phone's accelerometer to tell you what's going on, with the jump metrics being total time in the air, vertical inches up and down, speed, as well as both the side-to-side and front-to-back angle of your bike.
If all those numbers are riveting to you, you can now go deeper thanks to a recent update that allows riders to compare their jumps and even look at them on a 3D map overlay of your ride. That same map also uses colored vertical bars to show you how long you were (or weren't) in the air, so you can easily compare your runs at a quick glance. Want more details? Zoom in on one specific jump to get the exact numbers, and even examine your performance on a very formal-looking graph that shows you the arc your bike traveled on while you were in the air. All that can also be summed up with an overall score that MTB Hangtime gives you each jump, and because everything should be a competition, there's even a leader board on the app so you can compare yourself to other riders.
While the app is focused on jumping, you can also use it to measure your cornering performance. Again, employing your phone's accelerometer lets it measure things like the angle of your bike, both average and maximum corning G-forces, and even the average and maximum braking and acceleration forces. Just like the jumps, you can also go back and compare your runs, or even how you performed in a specific corner on each of those runs.
With ShockTune, your phone needed to be mounted to your bike perfectly flat or vertical, and while that's not the case with MTB Hangtime, you'll need to make sure it's attached to your bike (not your body) solidly so that it doesn't shake around.
MTB Hangtime isn't intended to be data acquisition for the masses - it's not providing that level of feedback - but the metrics do provide another interesting insight into your rides. Who out there has given it a try? Are you interested to know and compare how you performed over the jumps and through corners?