Campagnolo files a patent application in the United States for an “electronic device” which could be a hand crank power meter
Is Camapgnolo ready to add a power meter to its range?
In the past two months, the Italian brand has filed a patent application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office for a “bicycle component equipped with an electronic device”. It is supported by a previous Italian application filed in April 2020.
The patent includes “a processor and a wake-up unit” which will switch from “sleep mode to operating mode upon receipt of a wake-up signal from a wake-up unit”. Technically, this could apply to other electronic devices other than a power meter. However, the accompanying drawings clearly show a crank arm which enters the “full wake state” upon detection of rotation of said crank arm.
In addition, in the opening summary of the application, it is indicated that the alarm mechanism is best suited “to electronic devices such as torque meters or power meters applied for example to a crank arm or to a another transmission component “before saying” in this case the electronic device is preferably fixed on the crank or integrated into the crank “.
Going through the 18-page app, there is a continuous reference to the crank as a desired component for the device, such as point 117, which reads “When the bike component is a crank, the torque data from pedaling are obtained based on the force obtained from the output of a stress detector and based on the length of the crank.
Perhaps most revealing is that in the section of the application entitled “Detailed Description of Preferred Embodiments”, the crank arm is designated by its own number and used as the main component reference.
However, throughout the application reference is also made to the device used with other bicycle transmission components as well as with rotating parts such as the freewheel. So while there are clear indications that it is designed to be a hand cranked power meter, there is also no definitive evidence here. It’s probably also interesting to note that filing for a patent does not mean that the product in question will ever see the light of day.
That said, in the ongoing battle for group domination, Campagnolo is the only one of the “big three” not to offer a power meter. Instead, Campy users have to rely on third-party devices like Stages and SRM. Considering that SRAM now offers a power meter with its more affordable Force eTap AXS electronic groupset, it would be fair to say that the Italians are missing a tip.