Peloton Tread Review: beyond the drama
Listen, we cant ignore that pelotons. First treadmill made headlines after injuring several people and even killing a child, but this isnt that treadmill lets rewind a bit. Pelotons got two treadmills theres the tread plus, which launched back in 2018 and costs over four thousand dollars. I dont know about you, but forking over more than four thousand dollars for a treadmill that i can barely squeeze into. My apartment is absolutely bonkers. Thats. Why? At the height of the pandemic, peloton announced it was making the tread a sleeker, smaller and more affordable treadmill that would hopefully expand its reach to new customers. At least that was the plan. The reality is, the tread has had an incredibly rocky launch. It was supposed to arrive in february 2021 that got pushed to may and then just before its official launch. The tread got recalled alongside the tread plus because of a wobbly display fast forward. A few months. Pelotons made some design adjustments and it got the okay to launch the tread in august thats about when peloton started, pedaling itself straight off a cliff in case you missed the news. Pelotons business is a hot mess right now. In the past month, co founder and ceo, john foley stepped down and 2 800 employees were laid off after investing hundreds of millions into its north american manufacturing. Peloton also said that whole project was kaput and then some of the fired peloton employees gatecrashed new ceo, barry mccarthys first all hands.
You also have a horde of angry investors who want peloton to be sold to a bigger company like apple, amazon or nike. It makes perfect sense that theyre angry pelotons valuation plummeted from a pandemic high of 50 billion to 8 billion, so thats, where pelotons currently at which is absolutely wild. When you think about how successful the company was during the early days of the pandemic, usually when a company screws up this badly its because they have a bad product thats, not quite the case with peloton, the tread is actually an excellent treadmill. Its well built the rotating display is gorgeous, and these nifty knobs make it so much easier to control, speed and incline which, if youve ever been in a treadmill class. The last thing you want to do is tap the screen because you cant get the speed down fast enough, its a lot smaller and quieter than the tread plus to the point where most people would definitely be able to fit it within their homes without pissing off Their neighbors most treadmills are ugly as sin, but i wouldnt be ashamed to have one of these in my home. Pelotons also taken some effective measures to make this treadmill safer than its predecessor. Youve got the treadlock screen that requires you to input a passcode to unlock the display. The treadmill also wont turn on if the safety key isnt in place. Without these two components, you simply cant turn on the treadmill, its sort of like having two factor authentication and while the hardware is top notch, the classes are where peloton really shines, theres, so many to choose from with all kinds of instructors set to curated playlists.
I dont love treadmill running, but you know i felt myself inspired to push it in a few of the classes, because you have just king there and shes going girl. Can you give it an extra one percent which you know me running outside im, not gon na? Do that im gon na go really easy on myself, so once youve taken a class its easy to see why so many people are enamored with pelotons platform, its always easier to do hard things when someones cheering you on. Even if that person is inside of a screen – hello, jess king, basically, you have a winning combination of excellent hardware and software great right. So what does pelotons fall from grace? Have anything to do with you the most tangible way, pelotons floundering business impacts. Consumers right now is youve guessed. It price im gon na use the tread as an example again, but reminder this is the affordable peloton treadmill. So lets do some math it retails for 2, 500 and thats, not including the 40 monthly membership fee, but starting january 31st. Peloton tacked on another 350 charge for assembly and delivery, something that had previously been included in the original price at their q2 earnings, peloton admitted that it did that to boost the bottom line, so it was supposed to be pelotons more affordable. Treadmill is now pushing up on three thousand dollars, and the more expensive trend plus was a little over four thousand dollars, so were getting to the point where youre not saving more its, not really that much more affordable.
We dont know for sure whether this price hike is permanent. That depends a lot on mccarthys vision for where pelotons headed next in his first few interviews, mccarthy hinted that hes open to futzing around with pelotons entire pricing structure. That includes lowering the prices of the machines and possibly bumping up the cost of membership. Mccarthys also floated the idea of creating different subscription tiers, so you could totally buy into peloton now expecting one thing but get blindsided down the road. If and when things change and lets be real theres, a pretty good chance that things are going to change, pelotons misfortunes also point to a broader issue within the whole connective fitness industry, closed ecosystems lets say you decide to shell out for the tread. Technically speaking, you only own the hardware that shiny tablet cant do anything other than play peloton content. The treads tray also isnt big enough to prop up a tablet in case you want to watch your own content. Believe me, i tried at least the fancy treadmills at my gym. Can stream netflix and sync automatically with my apple watch? This is a machine thats been meticulously crafted to hook you into pelotons ecosystem? If you decide to cancel your membership, youre left paying a premium for something thats the same as any other treadmill. Perhaps peltons biggest problem so far. Is that its been confused as to what its real product is its not the bikes, its, not the treadmill, its the classes, but if peloton cant sort itself out, then that excellent product disappears and once again youre left with a bricked device that you paid too much For a lot about pelotons future is up in the air.
Well have to see whether pelotons new ceo can steer the company through a pretty severe cost restructuring plan, but on the bright side connected fitness is on the rise and its not like pelotons completely given up on its plans. There are a ton of products rumored to be in the pipeline, including a new connected rower, which has been rumored for forever, and the forthcoming peloton guide and as weve seen in the past, peloton knows how to make a good product. So im not saying pelotons destined for failure, its just something you have to think about. Alright everybody, great job watching this review.