I have a Garmin Edge 500. Records everything I need, but the pain is uploading and managing the data into Strava.

I just want to walk in from my ride, have a shower, have breakfast and see my ride stats straight away in my iPad or PC. In other words, I don't want to touch the device until the battery is about to run out. I don't want to plug in my device to anything either (usb, etc).

I know the Edge 500 cannot do this automatically as it does not have Bluetooth or Wifi, but it can connect without cables to the Cadence Sensor, etc. So why can't there be a hack or something to be able to "force" it to download the FIT file once within range of your internet at home?

The reason I ask this here is because I usually ride with my partners very early in the morning, and when I come home I have a lot to do before I go to work - have breakfast, get ready, kids to school, etc. By the time I get to work, and if I have time, I then upload the ride's stats into Strava usually around noon. By then it's "too late" as my ride buddies have already given Kudos to each other and I hardly get any, plus the ones I do get are days later from other people I don't even ride with. I know this sounds egoistic, but that's beside the point of the question and subjective to each one's needs of why we ride, etc.


  • I use a tomtom multisport watch for mountain biking. I have the cheaper non-altimeter version so straight line GPS distance (maybe 2% loss of real distance compared to altimeter devices). Garmin edge 500 uses real distance cycled from wheel. Bluetooth link to smart phone and direct upload to strava and tomtom mysports. Also auto deletes. – DWGKNZ Feb 5 '15 at 8:53
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    changed the title to make this good question sound less subjective, hope you don't mind, you can roll back if you wish – PeteH Feb 5 '15 at 11:05
  • Funny how the cycling specific units make it more complicated to upload you rides. I have an Oregon 450, and all I have to do is plug it in, it shows up on my computer as a USB drive, I go to Strava and upload the file. Couldn't really be any simpler. – Kibbee Feb 5 '15 at 11:31
  • @Kibbee. Yes it can be. I don't want to plug in anything. I've heard of other Garmin computers that do exactly what I need - walk home and your wifi router picks up the device, auto-uploads everything into both GarminConnect and Strava. – Fandango68 Feb 6 '15 at 4:39
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    It's not possible to auto upload with your garmin 500 but I don't think you'll have any issue selling it on as it should fit someone's needs. For future reference, take a look at DC Rainmaker's website as he does fantastic in-depth (understatement) reviews of anything cycling related. There are a number of reviews on there for Garmin devices which should cover any questions you need. – ynnekkram Jan 4 '16 at 6:18

I personally use a Garmin Edge 810 which can connect via Bluetooth to your smartphone and then automatically upload rides to Garmin Connect. The auto-transfer from Garmin Connect then allows your ride to appear in Strava almost immediately, however, this isn't without it's short-comings.

As per my comment on Mac's answer, I have found the auto-upload functionality very hit and miss ever since owning my 810 in April last year. Recent firmware updates have significantly improved the reliability, but it's still not perfect. Saying that, the fact it doesn't hit my phone's battery life is the winner for me.

There are lots of different devices on the market, but a quick look on Strava's own store has highlighted the Wahoo RFLKT which connects to your smart phone. Without a connection to your smart phone, the Wahoo is essentially useless. However, it would appear to be quite good as it allows a direct connection with your Strava app (displaying data that the app outputs), only costs $99 and then you have the piece of mind that your data will ultimately end up in Strava as soon as you finish your ride. This again has it's own cons as you need to use your phone as the main cycle computer, ultimately draining your battery quite rapidly.

It then really comes down to an argument of which appears more useful. A standalone bike computer with the ability to auto-upload when paired with a mobile phone, or a computer which simply displays data outputted by the Strava app at the sacrifice of your phone's battery life.

Wahoo RFLKT on the Strava store

Other alternatives on the Strava store

  • Another perspective on the 810: I've had no problems with it uploading. I generally have it connected to my phone and using the live tracking (so people know if I'm lying in a ditch somewhere) so maybe that makes a difference. As soon as I finish the ride it uploads it. – Holloway Feb 6 '15 at 15:54
  • Yes it has been fine lately, but it prior to the recent update of the iPhone app and firmware upgrade it would take several attempts at manually uploading. Reading the Garmin forums indicates it's quite a common problem and certainly doesn't affect everyone. I guess it's a luck of draw thing. – Michael Feb 6 '15 at 17:14
  • Fair enough, I'm using the android app so maybe that's a difference too. – Holloway Feb 6 '15 at 17:20
  • This is the right answer, for now until a device that auto pairs with home internet comes available. – Fandango68 Jan 4 '16 at 2:23

The Garmin Edge 510 can use bluetooth to pair with your smartphone. Then when you save a ride on the garmin, it'll automatically upload immediately.

  • I find that the Garmin Edge and Garmin Connect app can be a bit hit and miss on whether it will upload rides successfully. They have updated their firmware recently which appears to have improved the reliability, but it's far from consistent. I'm not sure if the Edge 1000 is any better than the 510/810 with regards to the auto-upload feature. – Michael Feb 5 '15 at 9:26
  • Interesting. You say it will upload when you save the ride. Does the ride save automatically periodically? I don't have one of these devices but would have thought that the ride would only be saved when you hit the "stop" button (at the end of the ride). Yet reading the blurb on the device, I thought they updated realtime? – PeteH Feb 5 '15 at 19:00
  • @PeteH they only upload the full ride to Garmin Connect once the ride has been stopped and saved. I think the blurb you're referring to is talking about LiveTrack which provides real-time updates to the Garmin website for fellow friends and family to watch. – Michael Jan 6 '16 at 10:41

Garmin Connect Edge 1000 has Wi-Fi which can auto-upload to Connect - and subsequently to Strava.

But the simplest solution is to use your phone? - however this has the disadvantage of draining the battery on it. So probably best used for those shorter training rides.

  • Strongly advocate just using phones. The battery issue can be sidestepped. 10-20Ah USB-outlet batteries exist and are easy to stow away (eg under saddle, USB cable tied to frame) without adding much weight, and will give an extra 10+ hours of full-on GPS. – Oli Feb 5 '15 at 10:11
  • I could use the many variations of GPS software on my N900 which does a lot more than most expensive TomToms! But as mentioned, it drains the battery quicker than getting ready to ride - well almost. If it didn't I would not have asked this question and I would not have bought a Garmin Edge 500. Thanks – Fandango68 Feb 6 '15 at 4:50
  • @Oli using a phone with a power source is viable, however I think it's nicer to know your phone is there for emergency purposes especially on longer rides. Additionally, I prefer the ruggedness and inherent weatherproof features of Garmins and other cycle computers. Having used "waterproof" cases with my phone in the past, I don't trust some of them. Regardless, your option is also perfectly fine and allows direct upload to Strava. – Michael Jan 6 '16 at 10:45

I'm not sure how to set it up on a PC, but you can upload the files directly to Strava and skip Garmin Connect altogether.

The Garmin 500 is just a usb drive like any other drive and you can upload the files using the Strava website.

This is not automatic, but it's a lot less painful than using any Garmin software.

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    I don't own one, but most of the time for stuff like this if you just don't have Garmin Connect installed, or make sure the background process isn't running. From the sounds of it, Garmin Connect will come up as soon as you plug it in. – Kibbee Feb 6 '15 at 0:56
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    I've downvoted this. The question specifically asks how to upload without connecting the device physically to a PC for uploading. It should happen automatically when within range of a router, PC, bluetooth or wifi. Thanks – Fandango68 Jan 4 '16 at 2:19

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