I’m a Good And Geeky motorcyclist! It’s only natural for me to want to collect the data from my motorcycle rides. I downloaded a couple of applications which I like for tracking my fun on a motorbike. Riser and Rever are both excellent applications which have a free version and a paid version. So far I’ve only used Riser free version and I paid for a month subscription to Rever. It was only €3.50 approximately for the month with Rever. I did it mainly because I wanted to find out what the 3D movie maps were like. This is where your ride is replayed in 3D on a map and you can make it into a movie. Riser has a pro feature called reWind and you have an interactive 3D map. I’ve been looking for a video showing what this looks like on YouTube but haven’t found anything yet. To be honest, it’s quite difficult to choose between these two applications. There are differences, but they mostly have the same features. Up until five minutes ago I was edging towards Riser being my preferred application. This was due to the automatic stopping and starting of tracking while on a journey. You don’t want the time counted while you are eating as part of your riding time. I just found a setting in the Rever application which also allows this automatic pause.
Free Versus Pro
Both of these applications have very good facilities available in the free versions. I suspect that for many people it will be sufficient to only use the free app. In both applications you get a record of your rides with lots of lovely information. With Rever you also get a graph which shows the elevation along the ride. Also with Rever you get two views showing your rides, a tile view and a list view. The tile view gives you a map along with the basic information such as how long the ride was and how many kilometres or miles you rode. Whichever way you start, list or tiles, by tapping on the ride you get more information. One cool feature in the Riser application is that you can hide your start and finish. This is for when you are starting from home and you are sharing the ride within the application or elsewhere. You might not necessarily want people to know where you live.
What You Get in Each App
|Cost of Pro/Premium||€59.99 / €29.99 Half price offer||€39.99 / €21.49 Offer|
|Date of Ride||✅||✅|
|Duration of RIde||✅||✅|
|Time Started Ride||✅|
|Top Speed||✅ Possibility to hide when sharing.||✅|
|Climb / Fall||✅|
|Sea Level max/Min||✅|
|Visual Showing elevation||✅|
|Temperature||Icons to mark basic weather state.||✅ – PRO|
|Maps||Offline Maps with PRO account||A variety of map styles in the free version and more available in the PRO version. Points of interest, weather overlay and Offline maps with PRO.|
|reWind / 3D View||reWind – ✅ – PRO||3D View ✅ – PRO|
|Link to Share Ride||✅||✅ or share an image from the map view of the ride.|
|More that 1 bike||Garage – List of bikes you own||Garage and lists of bike gear possible.|
|Photos||Can be added one at a time.||Can be added one at a time.|
|Mark a ride a Favourite||✅|
|Ride route again||✅|
|Upload GPX data||✅ – PRO|
|Challenges||✅||✅ Geographically limited.|
|Navigation / Route Planning||✅ – A to B|
✅ – Super Curvy road – PRO
|✅ – A to B and also with way points if required. More than 3 is a PRO feature.|
|Round Trip Suggestion||✅|
|Discovery – Rides and sections marked as good by yourself or other ride||✅||✅|
|Use previous rides and new ride.||✅|
|Turn by turn navigation||✅|
|Pack Ride||✅ – Limited to 30 minutes unless PRO|
Using Your Motorcycling Tracking Application
How easy are these applications to use? I have set up a shortcut on my iOS iPhone to automatically start these specialised motorcycle tracking applications. At the moment this does both applications Riser and Rever. Eventually I will choose just one of these applications and get rid of the rest. I have also just downloaded Calimoto to do some testing. If I don’t set up something to automatically start the application it’s quite likely I will forget. I have the habit of using Waze due to using in the car and enjoying the notifications I get about where the speed cameras are. The shortcut asks me if I am on the bike instead of the car. If the answer is the default ‘Yes’ it will start the GPS tracking app.
Tracking Your Ride with Riser
When you have the application if the map is not showing you tap on the middle button in the menu at the bottom of the screen. It says Go! and has a little picture of a house. Then all you need to do is to press the button to START TRIP. The map then changes to indicate the distance, time and climb at the top of the map screen. In the centre at the bottom there is a circle with six black dots inside. Tap on this button to get to another menu.
The one thing I really liked about this application right from the start is the auto pause. It will also auto resume if it has paused. There’s a button from the menu allowing you to manually click resume.
One of the buttons is for navigation. The starting point is your current location and you can add where you want to go to in the search field available. If you are a free user you only get the choice of curvy roads. Premium users also get the opportunity to choose a super curvy road. If you click on the settings button in the top right corner you can set some options. There are only two choices in the route options – Avoid Motorways and Don’t Have Time? If you need to get to your destination the quickest way possible, you just have to say you don’t have time and the route will change accordingly. There are times when we don’t have the enough time to have some fun on the way. In the free version I’m only given a single route to choose from once I’ve set the parameters. It may be that premium users get extra options.
My usual test for a mapping application routing is to get to a campsite in the French Pyrenees I use from time to time. I already know which routes are the best for whatever reasons. It’s interesting to see what the application gives me. If I don’t have time it will send me along the motorway. If I want to avoid the motorway it sends me along a completely different route. I’m quite happy with the decisions made by the application. In the iOS application you don’t get any options to add waypoints. So you would need to organise your journey in stages. It would be nice to specify stopping points on your journey.
If you don’t know where you want to go to you can tap the button in the top right-hand corner of the map, above the settings button, to get a round-trip from your location. When I clicked that button at home it gives me a trip of 81.5 km which would take me one hour and 40 minutes. You can go into the settings and change the maximum duration. I change the duration to 2 ½ hours and it gave me a trip of 206.5 km that would take me nearly 4 hours. Some strange things going on with the mathematics within the application.
What Else Might You Do in the Application?
In the menu at the bottom the first icon to the left is the feed. This gives you a scrolling screen showing your rides and rides of people you are connected to. It also shows connections to the journal/blog from the application.
Here there are two screens, the one entitled browse shows you getaways organised publicly in your current location. The other screen available is My Getaways. This will show you the getaways you are participating in and getaways you create yourself. I could create a getaway by pressing the plus icon in the top right-hand corner which brings up a screen giving a choice of – Short Spin, Daytrip and Journey. When you click on any of these you select a riding style – Cruising, Dynamic or Sporty.
The next thing is to choose the meeting point. You tap on the map and move it around until you get the exact position you want on the screen.
Pick a start time and end time. Give the getaway a title and a description then you can give the getaway a photograph if you wish.
Finish off the process by inviting friends you are connected to via the application. Or you can choose the visibility of the getaway within the application. Anyone, Friends or Private. If it’s private then only you will see it. So this could be a good way to meet motorcyclists in the area near where you live. Organise a group trip out for the weekend or whenever.
You have two screens available here, one is called Trips which shows you tiles for each of your trips. Each tile shows the date, the title, distance and duration of the trip. You can tap on the tile to go to the details of the trip.
At the top of the details you’ll see a map which you can tap on to go fullscreen. Further down you create a section, or there could be matching sections. Maybe another rider has ridden that road and created a section. A section is part of the trip which you have noted as being particularly good. Usually this is going to be a curvy, twisty road. I created a section in a recent trip, when I clicked on the section it opened up another screen in which told me that five bikers have ridden it nine times.
Then you have the button to Show reWind which is only available to premium members. Underneath reWind is the option to link to the trip and to share it. There is a toggle to enable the secret link. Tap on the blue bar across the screen to share the trip. The URL takes whoever clicks on it to a webpage showing the details of the trip. Obviously it always gives the opportunity for viewers to find out about the Riser app. I use this URL in a shortcut in the Shortcuts application in iOS. Even though the data is nicely presented within the Riser application I like to move the data into my own database. For this I use AirTable which allows me to see the data in a variety of ways. This is also good as a backup. If anything was to happen with the Riser application I wouldn’t lose all of the accumulated information. It isn’t difficult to set up the shortcut to send the info to Airtable. I found videos on YouTube showing how to do this with the API. I made a change to the original to ask me which bike I’m riding to get that into Airtable also. I want to make another change to ask me the reading off the odometer at the end of the trip to add to the data.
In this area you get quite a few options to play with. Setting up your profile is the first on the list. Get in and add whatever you want to share and see cumulative totals from your ride data. The distance you’ve logged, time riding, climb, number of trips and rank. I’ve got two gold stars whatever that means… Woo Hoo. Tap on Garage to add your bike or bikes. You will also get into your list of Riser friends through here too.
There is a social element to riding motorbikes and included in the app. There are lists of groups you can create and belong to. Challenges to take part in. I added my name to the April 2021 500km challenge. I can see I am ranked 34 in the list and there are 179 participants. I’ve already ridden 622km this month. It’s all a bit of fun to add a gaming element to the riding if you are slightly competitive.
Using Rever Tracking App
The first thing I notice is the more detailed maps in Rever. There are contours to show the lay of the land which would be useful if you’re riding off-road often. The tracking does not auto pause by default so you should set that in the settings before you do anything else. When you are ready to just hit the Record button when in the Track mode. Use the Create Ride option at the top of the screen if you want directions with the option to use twisty roads if you want.
Connect with Friends
I like the option of a QR code you can show to a friend who also has Rever. Handy if they are standing next to you so you can link up easily. Or you send a url link by whatever method to connect with your mates.
Planning a Route
There is a good route planning section. Set where you want to go to and add waypoints to refine the route as necessary. If you want twisty roads you have to be premium in the app. Set Avoid highways, Tolls and Ferries if you want. Load a route you have already recorded to ride it again and get directions. Premium users can import GPX data and download rides from the Discover section of the app. There is a button in the Discover section – Ride It, so maybe you don’t need to download the ride. Choose from various types of rides – Paved, mixed surface, Off-road Areas and more.
There are a lot of things to like about Rever and if it had the API or allowed me to scape the data from the url which shares the ride I would choose it. It’s good to have the data saved elsewhere, so if I wanted to swap apps at any time, I could. Just press the big orange button in the Track section to start the process at the beginning of a ride. the collected data is similar to Riser with the addition of a graphic to show the change of altitude during the ride. Add photos from the ride and link a YouTube video to show how it went. Same as in Riser there is a place to insert ride notes and comments.
There are challenges to take part in, in the Rever app although all of them are geographically restricted. I will not be riding in New Zealand or South Africa anytime soon.
Which App do I Choose?
I have recorded more trips using Riser than I have with Rever. It’s better to choose one application and stick with it. On the other hand, there are features within Rever which I like, along with a cheaper cost of entry to the premium or pro version. it looks like I’m going to be using both of them. I’ll use Riser because I can get the information I need out of it for AirTable. This will give me an independent set of date not chained to one specific app.
I’ll also use Rever because it only cost me €12.25 to get one year of pro subscription. There was a 30% offer I took advantage of on their web site. I like the 3D replay of rides and the prettier maps with more options. Although the day after subscribing I have no rides on display in the app. When I access the account in the browser, there are rides in the list. Something weird is going on with their server. Another reason to use Riser combined with AirTable to have more control of the data.
Use Rever to Ride Route again
With the Rever website you get a map with all your rides overlaid on top of each other. Of course you can look at each one individually to see the route on the map by itself. You’ll get all the same info as you get in the app on your phone. See the basic data and add comments, likes and favourite the ride. Premium members can download the GPX data file to use in other mapping applications. Or use yourself to do a re-run of a previous ride. An easier way to follow a previously ridden route if to select the route in the app, hit the icon which is a circle with three dots inside. Tap on the menu item Ride It! Choose Follow Route Line or Get Directions. Do the route in reverse if you wish.