Jumping is one of the main features of kitesurfing. However while flying or looking at a jump it stays quite difficult to estimate the height of your airs. Luckily technology comes to the rescue. Since a few years sensors are available that are able to measure the height of our jumps. I personally really love these devices as they give you very clear metrics of how you are growing and improving as a kitesurfer.
These devices also helped pushing the sport to new heights. Year over year people are jumping higher and higher and most recently the barrier of 30m was even crossed. Unfortunately there is no footage :(. But the guy did make a video about the jump. You can watch it here: HOW TO JUMP 33.9M | WOO World Record | BIG AIR Kitesurfing | Get High with Mike
But now that these sensors are starting to mature the question remains, which sensor should you buy? Well, here is a detailed comparison.
Lets start with an overall comparison in the table below before we dive into the details
User interface and app
Overall both devices are very easy to use and pairing with your phone is straightforward. When looking at the mobile App both have similar functionality. The main functionalities are a leaderboard, session details and an overall progress dashboard or profile. The leaderboard makes it possible to compare your session with riders from all over the world or for a selected region or time period.
In my experience the Woo app however is cleaner and more intuitive than then the PIQ duotone app. Both the session overview and the leaderboard are better represented in the Woo app. The overall progress dashboard on the other hands that gives an overview of all your sessions is better implemented in the Duotone app.
At the time of writing, Woo has announced some major changes to the app and that they will be offering a subscriptions service in the near future. This monthly subscription program would enable some premium features like GPS tracking of sessions, realtime sharing of sessions with friends and more detailed filtering in the leaderboard section.
A big plus for the PIQ is the led display on the expensive version of the PIQ ( RED). This display gives you the ability to see the height of the jumps instantly after their realisation, giving you a much better understanding of which of the height of specific jumps.
The Woo on other hands has an integration with the apple watch to display jump heights in realtime on your watch but I doubt that a lot of people take their apple Watch on the water.
Both devices can be used for other sports than kitesurfing. While the Woo was originally developed for kitesurfing it now also supports wakeboarding and even snowboarding. For those sport however height is less relevant so in these cases the Woo is rather used for trick detection. My experience with the trick detection in kitesurfing however is not very good. Repeating the same trick often is logged as something completely differen by the Woo. I would assume that the detection might be more accurate for snowboarding and wakeboarding as tricks in these sports are a bit more clean and therefor more easy to detect.
A big disadvantage of the Woo is that you need to choose for freestyle or big air mode before you start your session. In big air mode it does not detect tricks and in freestyle mode on the other hand it does not show your jump heights. Consequently you can not get both height and trick details at the same time.
The PIQ sensor is a general sport intelligence sensor that is used in multiple sport and was not developed for kitesurfing specifically. Only by collaborating with Duotone they started working on the kitesurfing functionality. For people that have other hobbies next to kitesurfing like Tennis, Golf, Skiing or Boxing this might be a big plus. They even plan to add functionality for up to 24 sports.
Making conclusions about the absolute correctness of measurement is difficult. What however also is important is the relative comparison. Therefor we have mounted multiple sensors on 1 board to analyse if they would all return the same values. We compared the Woo 2.0 with the Woo 3.0 and the PIQ Red. Overall we noticed that the Woo 3.0 measurements where most of the time a bit higher than the values of the Woo 2.0 and the PIQ. Assuming the Woo 2.0 and PIQ are correct the Woo 3.0 probably overshoots a bit.
To analyse the relative accuracy of the devices we mounted two sensors of the same type on one board. Both for the Woo 3.0 as the PIQ there was a variation of up to 1m on the sensor measurements. This means for the same jump the measurements of the same devices deviated up to 1 meters. So the measurement error of the 2 devices is quite similar.
Value for money
At the normal price rate the Woo ( 249 EUR ) is quite a bit more expensive than the PIQ, Especially the blue version (without the display) which only costs 129 EUR. If I would buy a PIQ however it makes more sense to go for the red edition (208 EUR) as the realtime display really is a big added value.
Currently the Woo 3.0 is on sale on Surfscanner at a price of 169 EUR Making this a great deal for your money.
Both device are well developed and worth their money. They distinguish themselves in different aspects. The Woo mainly has a better mobile app interface but its measurements might be a bit overrated. For the PIQ the device display is a great feature, its measurements might be a bit more accurate but it doesn’t yet has trick detection features. At this moment I am personally more in favour of the Woo as it has a bigger community over the whole world which makes it fun to compare your sessions with other people in your region.
Do you want to join the kitesurfing big air community, get yourself one of these devices