May 24, 2024

Zwift Revolutionizes Indoor Cycling with New Gaming Controller

In a bid to enhance the gaming experience of its virtual cycling program, Zwift has unveiled its first-ever dedicated controller, known as the Zwift Play. Similar in functionality to the Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Cons, this innovative controller consists of two separate pieces, each equipped with their own set of buttons.

The left half of the Zwift Play features a directional pad that facilitates navigation through on-screen menus and allows users to execute select turns within Zwift’s virtual world. On the right half, users will find face buttons that enable them to select menu options and activate in-game abilities such as teleportation to Pace Groups. Additionally, the controller is equipped with paddles at the back of both halves, allowing users to brake and steer their virtual bikes effectively.

To operate the Zwift Play, users need two Bluetooth connections, one for each half of the controller. In terms of battery life, each piece provides a claimed 20 hours of ride time. Furthermore, the controller comes with a split-end USB cable, enabling simultaneous charging of both pieces. The Zwift Play can be easily connected to any exercise bike using silicone straps, as long as the bike features drop handlebars and doesn’t have any unique configurations. For instance, it is not compatible with the Garmin Tacx Neo bike due to constraints posed by the shifter shape.

Alongside the release of the Zwift Play controller, Zwift has also introduced the Beta Zwift Play Game Experience. This virtual environment allows users to test the controller’s functionality and features a cycling course where users can experiment with the rear braking paddles and the ability shortcuts on the face buttons.

The Zwift Play controller is currently available for purchase on the company’s website at a special introductory price of $99/£99/€99. However, this discounted price will only be applicable until the Zwift Play Game Experience exits the beta phase. Once the beta phase concludes, the price will increase to $149/£149/€149.

While an official release date for the virtual world has not yet been confirmed by Zwift, the company remains committed to enhancing its exercise modes and soliciting user feedback to improve the overall experience. When asked about plans for expansion into other regions, Zwift revealed that they are considering expanding beyond the US, UK, and EU markets, but currently have no concrete plans to do so.

With the introduction of the Zwift Play controller, Zwift is taking virtual cycling to new heights by combining fitness and gaming. This gaming controller offers a more immersive and interactive experience for users, further solidifying Zwift’s position as a leader in the virtual cycling industry.

1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
2. We have leveraged AI tools to mine information and compile it